Fayoumi Chicken – Breed Profile & Facts
Fayoumi chicken is an excellent breed for any farmer looking for an active, hardy, and calm breed. This breed is tenacious and fun to raise. Fayoumi chickens are beautiful chickens with terrific laying abilities.
These ancient chickens are increasingly becoming popular in North America, especially in the US. Fayoumi chickens are awesome foragers and highly adaptable to hot climates.
What is a Fayoumi Chicken?
The Fayoumi chicken is an ancient chicken breed from Egypt. Fayoumi chickens are cousins of the wild Egyptian Fayoumi chickens, which are prevalent along the Nile River in Africa. Although Fayoumi chickens have been around for centuries, these chickens are relatively new in North America, specifically the US.
Chicken keepers raise these chickens specifically for eggs. Despite their stunning appearance, the APS (American Poultry Association) doesn’t recognize these birds for bird shows and exhibitions.
Fayoumi Chicken Characteristics
The Fayoumi chicken is typically a small-sized chicken breed. The breed doesn’t have many variants like other breeds. Fayoumi chickens, however, look elegant, and they are pretty beautiful chickens. These birds have large dark eyes. They also hold their tails high, unlike most fowl. The Fayoumi chicken has a large single comb, silvery head, and dark eyes.
Fayoumi chickens have unique black-speckled bodies that make them look like roadrunners. The Fayoumi chicken has silver or white feathers around the neck. Its body is rich in darker colors, mostly gray or black. The color pattern gives the Fayoumi chicken authenticity, making the fowl one of its kind. Fayoumi chickens have large and fluffy tails. Their tails are usually dark-colored.
– Size & Weight
Fayoumi chickens are small-sized chickens. Fayoumi roosters weigh between 1.35 and 1.8 kg, while hens weigh between 0.9 and 1.6 kg. Bantam Fayoumi chickens weigh 430 grams for roosters and 400 grams for hens.
Fayoumi chickens are lively and active birds. Although these chickens aren’t bossy, they are fast and noisy. Fayoumi chickens don’t tolerate human handling, so they aren’t your ideal cuddly bird pets. They are somewhat nervous, and they aren’t tamable. It would help if you had a high fence to keep these flighty birds from flying before you add them to your flock.
Fayoumi chickens love freedom, so they require adequate space to roam. These chickens are great for chicken farmers searching for suitable-free-range chickens. It isn’t expensive to raise Fayoumi chickens because they will get enough food through foraging.
Fayoumi chickens are vocal and will make noise as soon as they see a predator. These chickens are pretty alert to predators, so you can add these birds to your flock if you want to know when a predator is preying on your backyard flock. These independent chickens know how to care for themselves, so you should give your Fayoumi chickens plenty of freedom.
The Fayoumi chicken is a strong, healthy, and robust breed capable of living around 5 and 8 years. Fayoumi chickens can live for almost a decade if accorded outstanding care. Like other breeds, some factors can cut short the life of your Fayoumi chickens.
For instance, Fayoumi chickens at risk of predators can’t live close to half their average lifespan. Furthermore, exposure to chicken diseases can make your Fayoumi chickens vulnerable and less likely to live for long. Overall, the Fayoumi chicken is a robust and dependable breed that can live for a long time in good conditions.
– Egg Production
Fayoumi chickens start laying quite early. These chickens also lay plenty of high-quality eggs, notwithstanding their tiny size. Fayoumi hens usually lay between 150 and 200 cream-white eggs annually.
While their eggs are smaller than other hens’ eggs, the eggs from Fayoumi chickens are highly delicious. Moreover, eggs are low in cholesterol, thus excellent for persons struggling with weight problems and diabetes.
– Meat Production
Fayoumi chickens are undoubtedly impressive layers. That’s precisely why chicken enthusiasts raise these fowl for egg production. However, they aren’t suitable for meat production.
Because Fayoumi chickens are pretty small, you can’t expect to get decent quantities of meat from these birds. Thus, you should get another bird rather than the Fayoumi chicken if you want to raise chickens for meat production. Nonetheless, the meat from Fayoumi chicken is sweet and can be sufficient for small families.
Fayoumi Chicken Care
Fayoumi chickens are excellent layers and worth raising for tasty eggs. These birds have very little maintenance compared to other fowl. The best part about keeping Fayoumi chickens is that these fowl hardly fall sick.
Again, they are fantastic heat-resistant birds suited for scorching climates. However, Fayoumi chickens need proper care. Here is a breakdown of how to care for your Fayoumi chickens.
– Feeding & Nutrition
Feeding is vital for Fayoumi chickens because your Fayoumi chickens won’t live a healthy and happy life without proper nutrition. So it matters what you feed your chickens. First, Fayoumi chickens are avid foragers, so that they can satisfy their nutritional requirements by foraging.
But even while foraging, your Fayoumi chickens will need more nutrition, and you need to make up for what your chickens are missing when foraging out there.
For instance, you can’t expect newly hatched Fayoumi baby chicks to forage like adult chickens. Chicks are pretty fragile and vulnerable to predators and harsh weather conditions. Thus it could be a better idea to let your Fayoumi baby chickens go foraging, even with their mothers. Again, baby chicks aren’t old enough to eat tough food items that free-range Fayoumi chickens eat.
That’s why you must boost their nutrition with a high-quality and nutritious starter feed. An ideal starter feed for Fayoumi baby chicks has multiple nutrients and minerals. It’s particularly rich in protein, which baby chicks from all breeds, including Fayoumi chickens, need for steady development and growth.
Nonetheless, all starter feeds for Fayoumi baby chicks aren’t equal. Some are healthier and more nutritious than others. It’s good to check the label before selecting a starter feed for your Fayoumi baby chicks. Check if the starter feed has around 20% protein because your chicks will need more of this nutrient from hatching. Otherwise, the tiny birds won’t develop muscle or grow feathers.
The starter feed must have other minerals, such as phosphorus, calcium, and iron. For instance, your chicks’ bone development and health depend on their calcium consumption. The more calcium your baby chicks consume, the stronger their bones will grow, so you must ensure the starter feed has at least 5% calcium.
Young Fayoumi chickens can eat various foods, so there aren’t any diet restrictions for such chickens, especially when they are free-ranging. Many Fayoumi chicken raisers, especially those rearing their fowl indoors, opt for chicken feed while raising their young birds. However, your young Fayoumi chickens won’t get adequate minerals and nutrients if they strictly consume the chicken feed.
Your chickens will require additional food sources to get enough nutrition. For instance, growing Fayoumi chickens need vitamins such as B2, C, D, and A. These vitamins enhance their immunity, making the fowl hardy enough to withstand multiple diseases. Your chickens can derive these vitamins from various fruits and vegetables.
For instance, fruits like berries and oranges can be excellent Vitamin C sources for younger and adult chickens. Chickens experiencing a vitamin C deficiency have defective immune systems and are at risk of falling sick. Vegetables, such as kale, chards, broccoli, cabbages, and lettuce, are also rich in vitamin A, which Fayoumi chickens require for good eye health. Fayoumi chickens will need a lot of fresh and clean water like other birds, particularly during hot weather.
Although you can free-range your Fayoumi chickens, your birds need a coop to sleep in at night. After all, Fayoumi chickens are vulnerable to multiple predators, so you can’t expect your chickens to spend the night outside safely.
Fayoumi chickens don’t have complicated housing requirements because of their small size. Moreover, you can house several Fayoumi chickens in a standard cage because these birds only need a little space. Every Fayoumi chicken will require around three square inches of space. Nonetheless, your Fayoumi chickens should have room to run and move freely.
Because Fayoumi chickens are laying dynamos, these birds must have places to lay. Consequently, these chickens will need nesting boxes. The more Fayoumi hens you have, the more nesting boxes your birds will need for laying. The ideal ratio of nest boxes for Fayoumi chickens is one nesting box per Fayoumi hen.
It would help to prioritize the safety of your Fayoumi chickens when housing your birds. For instance, you must house your chickens in an entirely secure cage, or predators will come for your birds. Avoid using flimsy chicken wire on your coop because some sneaky predators will get to your birds through the wire. Again, use strong latches on the coop’s door because raccoons and dogs can easily open doors with weak latches.
Finally, insulate the cage during cold months because cold affects Fayoumi chickens. While Fayoumi chickens are suitable for hot climates, too much heat can affect them and so ensure their coop has good ventilation.
– Health Problems
These are some health problems your Fayoumi chickens are likely to encounter, although these chickens are disease-resistant.
- Newcastle disease- This is a contagious disease that affects domestic fowl. Fayoumi chickens with Newcastle disease have signs such as drooping wings, coughing, sneezing, depression, and nasal discharge.
- Marek’s disease– The viral infection is usually prevalent in ducks, although chickens can suffer from this condition. Fayoumi chickens with Marek’s disease have signs such as paralysis, weight loss, pale combs, and loss of appetite.
- Avian Influenza– Also known as bird flu, this disease affects Fayoumi chickens, especially during cold months. Its symptoms in Fayoumi chickens include nasal discharge, lack of coordination, and decreased egg production.
How Much do Fayoumi Chickens Cost?
Fayoumi baby chicks cost around $7 per chick, hens cost about $15, and roosters cost below $10.
Are Fayoumi Chickens Good for Beginners?
These chickens are fantastic for beginners, particularly those venturing into egg farming. These birds are disease-resistant, active, and easy to maintain.
Are Fayoumi Chickens Hardy?
Fayoumi chickens are hardy. They are among the few chicken breeds that can withstand hot temperatures and survive several chicken diseases.
Can Fayoumi Chickens Fly?
Fayoumi chickens are excellent fliers. They usually fly while running away from predators. So it would help if you had a tall fence while keeping free-range Fayoumi chickens.
Tips on Keeping Fayoumi Chickens
- Have a high fence while raising free-range Fayoumi chickens.
- Provide quality foods that meet your Fayoumi chicken’s growth
- Give your Fayoumi chickens treats and snacks to keep the chickens happy
- Avoid handling your Fayoumi chickens because they don’t tolerate human handling
- Ensure the chickens have access to the best possible living conditions
Fayoumi chickens are superb ancient chickens to raise, particularly for egg production. These beautiful chickens are adept foragers with little nutritional and maintenance needs. Their stunning beauty and remarkable laying capabilities make Fayoumi chickens pleasant birds to raise.