About California Gray Chickens
chickens are an American breed developed by James Dryden during the 1930s. They
are a dual-purpose chicken: they are good for meat production and egg laying.
First the California
White breed was developed with a White Leghorn rooster bred to three Barred
Plymouth Rock hens. Then a Barred Plymouth Rock rooster was bred to California
White Leghorn hens to make the California Gray.
Rock chickens are a very popular and heavy dual purpose breed with alternating
black and white stripes. On the other hand, White Leghorn chickens are white,
small in size and excellent white eggs layer. The result was a naturally
autosexing breed with gray barred plumage. They are not as large as the Barred
Plymouth Rock chickens but heavier than the White Leghorn chickens. Being a
crossed breed, California Gray chicken breed have never been admitted into the
American Poultry Association’s Standard of Perfection.
California Gray chicks
are primarily black with a white spot on the top of the head. And the chest,
abdomen and wing tips are white. Young pullets (females) are darker in color
than the young cockerels. So, gender of the young birds can be easily
determined by color. Feathers of mature birds are barred, black and white, and
the hens are darker black than the roosters. Their color is similar to the
Barred Rock, but the body style more resembles the Leghorn chicken breed.
Their shanks and
toes are yellow. They have a single red comb. They have small white earlobes
and red wattles. On an average, California Gray roosters weight about 2.5 kg
and hens about 2 kg.