A Partridge Cochin cockerel
|Country of origin||China|
|Weight||Male: 5 kg|
|Female: 4 kg|
|PCGB||Soft Feather: Heavy|
Gallus gallus domesticus
The Cochin or Cochin China, is a breed of chicken. The name Cochin came from the original Chinese name 九斤黄(in pinyin: jiujin huang, pronounced jil jin hwaang), meaning nine jin yellow, erroneously conflated with the then-current names for what are now parts of southern India and Vietnam, where jin is a traditional Chinese measurement of weight. In China itself, the name 九斤黄 is actually used for any large chicken or even a dish made from one.
This chicken was originally bred in China and later exported to Britain and America in the mid 19th century. As a very distinctive breed of chicken, it apparently created a bit of a craze among poultry lovers in the English-speaking world, effectively launching poultry fancy as we know it today. Not only was this breed one of the largest seen, with cocks weighing up to 5 kg (11 lb), but also the soft and plentiful plumage makes the bird quite conspicuous by exaggerating its already large size. Once in the United States, the breed underwent considerable development into its current state. There is also a bantam version, which is often called the "Pekin bantam", but should not be confused with the separate true Pekin bantam.
As above, the most distinctive feature of the Cochin is the excessive plumage that covers leg and foot. The skin beneath the feathers is yellow and the egg colour is light brown. Eggs are also medium in size. Standard weight is 5 kg (11 lb) for a cock, 4 kg (9 lb) for a cockerel, 3.9 kg (9 lb) for a hen, and 3.2 kg (7 lb) for a pullet. Colour varieties include buff, black, partridge, blue, silver laced, splash, golden laced, and white. Cochins can be frizzled, with the feathers curling outwards. Cochins are well known as good mothers, even as foster mothers for other breeds, and they can lay many eggs, but usually not for extended periods of time. Cochins are also known to be good pet hens for the garden, as they are tame and regarded as one of the most 'friendly' chicken breeds. Cochins are rather quiet chickens, and tend to be quite calm as well.
- Delayed feathering in chickens, a condition found in this breed.
Media related to Cochin (chicken) at Wikimedia Commons