New Zealand Rare Breeds Website: – Information


A Rare Breed of Dutch Origin

Group of Barnevelders
Black Laced (standard) Barnevelder and Blue Laced Barnevelders
owned by Heather McCormick

The Barnevelder is one of the smaller heavy breeds with beautiful markings. Good examples of the breed look as though their feathers are painted with their double lacing on red-brown background.

The breed is best known for the dark brown eggs it lays but here in New Zealand the eggs are not as dark as in the breed’s home country. Some hens lay a slightly speckled egg (mid-brown speckles on a light-brown ground colour) but most hens lay a light or mid-brown egg. Egg colour is not judged at poultry exhibitions so there was no incentive for exhibitors to select for dark egg colour during those years when our heritage breeds almost died out.

Fortunately, the Barnevelder with its unique markings was kept alive by the poultry fanciers of the mid 20th century so that we are still able to enjoy this most beautiful breed.

Barnevelder eggs
Barnevelder eggs
Barnevelder feathers
Close-up of the intricate feather pattern
Thanks to Marina Steinke for supplying information and photographs.

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