Birchen is one of the rarer varieties of Bantam Cochin. They were accepted into the APA and ABA standard in 1977. The Bantam Cochin is in the Feather Leg Class. Bantam Cochins should be in the following weight range: Hen: 26 oz, Rooster: 30 oz, Pullet: 24 oz, Cockerel: 26 oz. Bantam Cochins lay a small cream-colored egg. They are friendly birds that are perfect for showing or as pets. The hens are notorious for being broody and tend to be good mothers.
Birchen is genetically E^R/E^R. They are not the inverse of Columbian. Columbian is on its own allele, Co/Co. Crossing Birchen and Columbian will mess up both varieties!
Birchen is signified by a black body with silver lacing in the head, neck and chest of females. Males have silver lacing in the head, neck, chest, hackles, saddle, and into their cushion. They are on a crow wing, which means they have solid black primaries and secondaries. The males do have silver wing bows.
Birchen is a complex pattern to get the correct balance of silver lacing to black body. The feathers should be clear of shafting or white anywhere but the edge of the feather. The lacing should be solid and should go completely around the whole feather. While undermarked or over marked birds are useful in the breeding pen, they are undesirable in the show ring.
We have been breeding and showing birchen cochins since 2017. Below are some of our birds. We are a current member of Cochins International.
CI Birchen Exhibitor of the Year: 2018, 2019, 2020