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Paduan hen:price, breeding and characteristics of Paduan hens. Ornamental use or breeding as a laying hen.
The "Paduan hen” it is a very popular breed. It is famous for being described and illustrated in the text "Ornithologiae" by Ulisse Aldrovandi, written between 1599 and 1603. Already from this first approach you will understand that it is a highly appreciated ornamental breed. The origin of the breed is uncertain: it is assumed that thePaduan henmay be the result of crosses between different European breeds such as the Polish hen, the Dutch one and the Houdan.
Despite the popularity of this breed, the number of specimens has gradually decreased until it almost disappeared around the 1960s. It was the work of careful breeders that brought the populations of Paduan hens back to their ancient splendor, also thanks to the Professional Agricultural Institute of Padua which was able to enhance the specificity of the breed.
Due to its importance, the Paduan hen is included in the National Plan on biodiversity of agricultural interest as native breed.
The photos in the article are taken from the website of theBreeder dr. Andrea Pozzato, from the gallinapadovana.net website. Its portal can be an excellent point of reference for those who want to raise Paduan hens.
The main feature of thePaduan henit is the conformation of the skull which, at the top, bears a bony protuberance covered by an exuberant tuft of feathers. The tuft of feathers on the head is not the only one that this ornamental hen sports: there is also a "beard", two tufts under the eyes and small "big ears" (not very visible because they are hidden by the sideburns of the main tuft.
Among the ornamental hens, the Paduan is appreciated not only for its appearance but also for itselegant bearing is slow. Those who are not very accustomed to the world of hens can distinguish the Paduan one by observing its legs which are slate blue (lead gray). In Italy, the only other breed with such legs is the black Valdarno hen.
The dimensions are average: the rooster weighs an average of 1.8 - 2.3 kg while the hen has a weight of about 1.5 - 2 kg. The female has a compact tuft with short feathers and rounded apex. The Paduan roosterinstead, it has a more expanded tuft with elongated and pointed feathers.
The Italian Federation of poultry associations, for thePaduan hensrecognizes nine colorways, although when it comes tobreeding, we find mainly eight:
- Black and white Paduan hen (monochrome)
- Hemmed as plumage silver edged with black, or blue edged, chamois edged with white or gold edged with black.
- Crossed out (like the Paduan hen Sparviero)
- Taped (they can be tricolor or edged and tapped in white ...).
Paduan laying hen
The Paduan breed can also be counted among laying hens. This breed, in fact, has a triple attitude: due to its appearance it looks like the perfect ornamental hen but also manages to offer a good production of eggs so it can be defined, in all respects, a laying hen.
How many eggs does a Paduan hen produce?
Speaking of eggs, the production reaches 150-180 eggs per year, weighing 55 grams each. TherePaduan henit is appreciated for its white eggs.
There is no shortage of breeders who choose the Paduan breed for the production of meat even if, as stated, it is a light breed and therefore it is proposed for those who aim at a production of quality and not quantity. The production of meat from this breed therefore represents a niche market.
The meats are particularly lean, darker in color than chicken meat that we find in the supermarket and have an incomparable flavor: tasty and genuine. Due to its particularity, thePaduan hensare mentioned in the Atlas of traditional Venetian products and constitute aSlow food presidium, that is, a traditional gastronomic heritage.
As an ornamental hen
From an ornamental point of view, the hen, despite having an elegant bearing, can be much loved by children because it has an almost funny gait. Walk slowly and bizarrely because the large tuft partially obstructs the view.
Due to its physical characteristics, the Paduan can be "adopted" in agritourisms and educational farms: it will undoubtedly be a much loved hen.
The cost can vary greatly depending on the breeder. Taking a look at the sales announcements, an adult and reproductive specimen can cost around 20 euros.