Other common names: Íslenska hænan; Haughænsni; Landnámshænan; Viking Hen
The Icelandic Chicken (Íslenska hænan) is a landrace breed of chicken from Iceland. The breed is very old, and has been on the island since at least the 9th century, where it was raised by Norse settlers.
Over the years, as new breeds where introduced to Iceland, the breed became less common. In the 1970’s, a veterinarian from the Agricultural School of Iceland saved the breed from extinction. Today, there are estimated to be less then 3,000 birds in Iceland. The Icelandic was imported to the USA in 2003.
Varieties (Any Comb): Any color, some birds sport crests.
Uses: Eggs, Preservation
Weight: 3.5 - 5.5 lb
Personality: Friendly, energetic and undemanding.
Preferred climate: Any
Handles confinement: No
Egg production: Good 3/week
Egg color: White or Cream
Egg size: Medium
What else you should know:
Roosters work cooperatively to protect their flock, and the entire flock is attentive to the chicks.
backyard flock, curious birds, eager foragers, fabulous addition, phenomenal mothering instincts
rare breed chicken, flock range
My wonderful Icelandic hens
My Icelandic hens, were mostly and experiment for me to beguine with, I have a big ranch and thought i should get some hens to add some warmness to my home. At the beginning i just got 12 but shortly after i saw just how amazing this animal is,, they don't make so much noise, but are very friendly, they run free on my land, but always come when they see me bring food for them, they often follow me when i walk around my land, one even thinks she's a dog, always acts like one, follows me, and even fetches small things for me, i was really surprised by that because that was so unexpected, now i have 25 hens and i am very excited to say that i want more, not for the eggs but for the uniq way they look, their colour and how they are, pulse every one that sees them always talk about how friendly and good looking they are.
The hens are really loyal, and extremely good company!.
From Thoraltec Feb 6 2015 3:25AM
wonderful, rare breed chicken worth preserving
Icelandic chickens are a fabulous addition to the backyard flock. In addition to their beauty, they are eager foragers who prefer being outdoors free-ranging or in frequently moved pens where they find much of their nourishment. They are very cold hardy, curious birds who in my flock range from quite flighty to downright friendly. They can be fairly vocal, and this coupled with their need to range could make them challenging for folks on small plots or surrounded by sound-sensitive neighbors. These birds are alert to predators but do have an independent streak, meaning individual hens will sometimes wander far from the body of the flock. They lay a medium colored cream to white colored egg. I find these birds begin laying between 4 and 6 months of age with no supplemental lighting. Young birds will lay more regularly through the winter; older birds I find are more sporadic in winter, but I do not provide supplemental light to my flock. I have had very few Icelandic hens go broody but those who did had phenomenal mothering instincts and raised healthy, alert, well-adjusted chicks. Icelandic chickens present in a range of colors, in my flock they are mostly hues of brown and chestnut with white speckling. Some have small crests (which to not interfere with their as so the crests on Polish chickens) and some do not. I have both yellow- and slate-legged birds in my flock, although yellow is more common..
From sacredbough Nov 15 2012 3:49PM