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The Phoenix is one of many breeds of chicken that resulted from European selective breeding of onagadori, a long-tail fowl bred in Japan for a thousand years. They molt every other year, unlike most chicken breeds that molt every year. The breed is famous for its wide, rigid sickle feathers two to five ft. long, with their saddle feather growing from 12 to 18 inches.
The first president of the National German Poultry Association, Mr. Hugo du Roi, is credited with the creation of the Phoenix breed. The long-tailed birds imported before 1900 represented a small population of chickens with delicate constitutions. Mr. du Roi made the decision to outcross to try and invigorate this small population and keep alive long-tailed fowls in Europe. It is worth speculating that the name “Phoenix” was given to the resultant chickens to acknowledge the seeming “rise from the ashes” of their soon lost parents. The Phoenix breed was accepted into the American Poultry Association Standard of Perfection in 1974 with the Gold and Silver varieties. Recently the Black Breasted Red variety has also been included.
The Phoenix chicken is just one of the many unique and beautiful birds you can see at Spokane’s premiere Petting Farm, brought to you by Mountain Valley View Farm. We have both Silver and Golden varieties.