The La Fleche chicken is a French dual-purpose breed. They are beloved for their delicious meat, slow development, and easiness of fattening. Because of their slow growth throughout their lifetime, you should adjust their diet to suit their growth.
They are an endangered breed and very rare in the United States. Hens will lay around 180 large white eggs per year and are not likely to go broody.
La Fleche Chicken Breed Quick Info
La Fleche Chicken Description
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La Fleche Egg Production
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La Fleche Meat Production
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Origins of La Fleche Chicken
The La Fleche chicken breed originated in the Valley of Sarthe in France. They resulted from crossbreeding Black Spanish, Crevecoeur, and DuMans chickens.
The breed made its way to America in the 1850s and was recognized there as a standard breed in 1874. They had moderate success in the United States but then lost popularity as faster-developing, hardier meat birds became common.
Today, they remain rare and are on the Critically Endangered List of the United States Livestock Conservancy.
Some Things to Know About La Fleche Chicken
The La Fleche has a unique “V”-shaped comb that resembles horns. This is why they are named La Fleche, or “the arrow” in French (though they are also named after a town).
They are a medium size with glossy black plumage, white earlobes, and a full, curvaceous tail. The La Fleche has stout, dark grey legs and a red face, as well as large red wattles. They have a similar appearance as the Spanish chicken, except for their combs.
How Easy is it to Keep La Fleche Chickens?
La Fleche chickens are good foragers and active birds. They are not aggressive towards people but are cautious and not good pet chickens. They do well in warmer climates but do not do well in the cold.
They love to forage and even roost in trees, so they enjoy large expanses of land and are very independent. They are good flyers and are known to avoid human contact, so they require a high fence and extra attention if they free range. They also do well in confinement.
Special Care and Considerations for La Fleche Chickens
The La Fleche chicken is a generally healthy breed. They tolerate heat very well but do not do well in the cold, so they require special care in cold temperatures, such as putting vaseline on their combs and wattles to prevent frostbite.