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Breeds of Livestock, Department of Animal Science

Poultry Breeds - Leghorn Chickens

Poultry Breeds - Leghorn Chickens


Origin: The Leghorn originate from a region in Northern Italy near the port for its namesake, Leghorn. The ancestors of this fowl are not known. The Leghorn arrive in America in the mid-1800’s by Captain Gates.  The APA recognizes many varieties of the Leghorn, but they all came at different times.

Characteristics: A small, spritely, noisy bird with great style, Leghorns like to move about. They are good foragers and can often glean much of their diet from ranging over fields and barnyards. Leghorns are capable of considerable flight and often roost in trees if given the opportunity. Leghorns and their descendants are the most numerous breed we have in America today. The The Leghorn has red wattle, white earlobes, and either a single or rose comb. Leghorns rarely go broody.

Standard Weights: Cock: 6 lbs; Hen: 4 ½ lbs; Cockerel 5 lbs; Pullet: 4 lbs.


Skin Color: Yellow

Egg Shell Color: White

Use: The Leghorn is primarily a layer. The hen lays around 200 or more eggs per year.


Chicken Breeds and Varieties (A2880), John L. Skinner, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Ekarius, Carol. "Chickens: Leghorn." Pocketful of Poultry: Chickens, Ducks, Geese, Turkeys. North Adams, MA: Storey Pub., 2007. 100-01. Print.

"Leghorn - Non Industrial - Chicken." The Livestock Conservancy. The Livestock Conservancy, n.d. Web. 30 June 2015.

Lewis, Celia. "Breed Profiles: Leghorn." The Illustrated Guide to Chickens: How to Choose Them, How to Keep Them. New York: Skyhorse Pub., 2011. 109-10. Print.


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Updated November 14, 1996



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