Frizzle (chicken breed)

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White Frizzle Chicken.JPG
A frizzle-feathered chicken at the Minnesota State Fair in Falcon Heights, Minnesota, USA; possibly not of the frizzle breed
  • Male: Standard: 3.2–3.6 kg[1]:121
    Bantam: 680–790 g[1]:123
  • Female: Standard: 2.25–2.7 kg[1]:121
    Bantam: 570–680 g[1]:123
Egg colourwhite or tinted[1]:121
Comb typesingle
EEStandard and bantam recognised[3]
PCGBsoft feather: heavy[4]
Illustration from the Geflügel-Album of Jean Bungartz, 1885

The Frizzle is a breed of chicken with characteristic curled or frizzled plumage. While the frizzle gene can be seen in many breeds, such as the Pekin and Polish, the Frizzle is recognised as a distinct breed in a number of European countries[3][5] and Australia.[6] In the United States frizzled chickens are not considered a breed, and at shows are judged by the standards of the breed they belong to.[7]:24


The origin of the Frizzle is unknown. The frizzle gene is thought to have originated in Asia;[8]:137 frizzled chickens have been reported from the Far East since the eighteenth century.[5] The Frizzle breed is the result of breeder selection for exhibition.[5][9]:102 It is recognised in nine European countries: Belgium, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Poland, Slovakia and the United Kingdom.[3][1]


The gene for the curling of the feathers is incompletely dominant over normal plumage; not all members of the breed have frizzled feathers. Frizzled birds are heterozygous for the gene; when two are bred, the offspring inherit the gene in the usual Mendelian 1:2:1 ratio: 50% are heterozygous and frizzled like the parents, 25% have normal feathering, and 25% are "over-frizzled", with brittle feathers resembling pipe-cleaners.[citation needed] The Frizzle has a single comb and is clean-legged – without feathers on the shanks.[1]:121 It is a good forager and is hardy.[5]

Four colours are recognised in the Entente Européenne standard: black, blue, cuckoo and white.[3] The Poultry Club of Great Britain recognises thirteen colours for both standard and bantam sizes;[10] not all of them are currently bred.[5] The Australian Poultry Standards recognise black, blue, buff, white, columbian, red and "any recognised colour".[6]


The Frizzle is reared exclusively for exhibition.[1]:121 It is a good layer of white or tinted eggs, and frequently gets broody.[8]:137


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i Victoria Roberts (2008). British poultry standards: complete specifications and judging points of all standardized breeds and varieties of poultry as compiled by the specialist breed clubs and recognised by the Poultry Club of Great Britain. Oxford: Blackwell. ISBN 9781405156424.
  2. ^ APA Recognized Breeds and Varieties: As of January 1, 2012. American Poultry Association. Archived 4 November 2017.
  3. ^ a b c d Liste des races et variétés homologuée dans les pays EE (28.04.2013). Entente Européenne d’Aviculture et de Cuniculture. Archived 16 June 2013.
  4. ^ Breed Classification. Poultry Club of Great Britain. Accessed August 2014.
  5. ^ a b c d e Welcome. The Frizzle Society of Great Britain. Archived 30 September 2012.
  6. ^ a b Australian Poultry Standards (2nd ed.). Victorian Poultry Fanciers Association (trading as Poultry Stud Breeders and Exhibitors Victoria). 2011. p. 79. ISBN 9781921488238.
  7. ^ Carol Ekarius (2007). Storey's Illustrated Guide to Poultry Breeds. North Adams, Massachusetts: Storey Publishing. ISBN 9781580176675.
  8. ^ a b Frances Bassom (2009). Chicken Breeds & Care: A Color Directory of the Most Popular Breeds and Their Care. Buffalo, NY: Firefly Books. ISBN 9781554074730.
  9. ^ Chris Graham (2006). Choosing and Keeping Chickens. London: Hamlyn. ISBN 9780600614388.
  10. ^ Frizzle Breed Standards. The Frizzle Society of Great Britain. Archived 16 October 2012.