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Author Topic: Bare Neck Chicken  (Read 6611 times)


  • Joined Feb 2008
  • St. Mayeux, Brittany
Bare Neck Chicken
« on: October 30, 2008, 10:41:47 am »
About a month ago we bought six chicks (6 wks old) to fatten up for the freezer.  They are growing nicely but obviously still have a few weeks to go.  There are 3 grey ones, 2 white ones and a red one which doesnt have any feathers on her neck.  I'm growing quite attached to the red one whom we call the Ugly Sister and the thought of wringing that little bare neck is becoming unattractive!  As we lost one of our laying hens a while back I am thinking of adding Ugly Sister to the layers to make up the numbers to 6 again.  Does anyone know anything about these bare necked chickens and are they good layers?  I feel like knitting her a scarf for the winter!

garden cottage

  • Joined Sep 2008
  • forest of dean
Re: Bare Neck Chicken
« Reply #1 on: October 30, 2008, 01:52:26 pm »
Hi hilary found this on google.............neil ::)
These have to be the strangest looking chickens in the poultry world. They look like a cross between a turkey and a chicken with their completely featherless necks and faces and this was a common myth when they were introduced to this country in the 1920s when they were described as Churkeys! The exposed skin actually turns bright red in sunlight just like that of the turkey. They originate from Hungary but it was in Germany that the breed was perfected and the lack of feathering on the neck is due to a dominant gene. They actually possess half the total number of feathers in other breeds which makes them much quicker to pluck than other table birds. They are currently very popular in the hotter Eastern countries where they are kept as table birds because they are able to withstand much hotter temperatures than other birds. They have existed as free ranging birds in France for centuries where they remain popular to this day. They are heavy birds with long, elongated bodies. The legs are featherless and slate blue in dark feathered breeds or yellow in the paler feathered varieties with four toes on the feet. The neck is totally without feathers and this bare skin continues right up to the crop. The top of the head has feathers on and they usually have a single comb or sometimes a rose comb and large wattles. The earlobes are red and the eyes are reddish bay. There is also a bantam version of this breed. 
They are good layers, producing brown eggs and are hardy, vigorous birds. They are happy to free range or be confined in runs and are not known as being particularly good fliers. They need protection in extremely cold temperatures because of their lack of feathers but can cope remarkably well in very hot climates. They are easy to tame and are very placid, calm birds. They are not good broodies as their lack of feathers makes it hard to keep the eggs warm but if allowed to sit on just a few eggs, they are capable of hatching their own eggs and the resulting chicks are born with their necks already exposed and featherless. Males weigh around 7-8lbs while the females are 5½-6½lbs. 
The Naked Neck can be found in several different colour varieties including black, white, cuckoo, buff, red and blue. 
Status: Rare 
his on google---


  • Joined Feb 2008
  • St. Mayeux, Brittany
Re: Bare Neck Chicken
« Reply #2 on: October 31, 2008, 07:59:41 am »
Thanks for that Neil, I spent ages searching on'tinternet and didnt find this.  So they are good layers, thats good.  My next problem is, what do I do about feeding her?  If I put her in with the layers now she will get layers pellets which she is too young for and if I leave her with the growers she will get fat.   :-\


  • Joined Oct 2008
Re: Bare Neck Chicken
« Reply #3 on: October 31, 2008, 07:07:07 pm »
They are called naked neck turkens. They are dual purpose birds that are mostly seen in the show circuit these days! They are quite rare! I would keep her for sure! I'm sure she would make a nice layer! Good luck!


  • Joined Oct 2008
  • Normandy, France
Re: Bare Neck Chicken
« Reply #4 on: October 31, 2008, 10:02:19 pm »
In France they are called Canues - that is how it is pronounced but possibly wrong spelling.  I love them and the information re laying is absolutely correct - they are fantastic layers. They are favourites with the French for this purpose.  I have to say that here in the French countryside, the birds are all fed the same. They have 'baby' food, then go on to the next stage food, and then that is it, they are out there with the adults.  They lay when they are ready and we have never had a problem and nor have generations of French farmers.

Enjoy your chook and the lovely eggs that she will eventually lay for you!

Kate  :chook:
Bonjour et avoir un bon jour !


  • Joined Aug 2008
Re: Bare Neck Chicken
« Reply #5 on: November 01, 2008, 07:13:36 pm »

I too have naked necks and hatched naked neck chicks also.
Good layers and good meat birds also, so I am told.
Cou nou in french I think, come in black and golden colours.


  • Joined Oct 2008
  • Normandy, France
Re: Bare Neck Chicken
« Reply #6 on: November 03, 2008, 05:48:55 pm »
Yes both colours.  I have both and I find that the red/golden hens are smaller and more delicate than the black hens that are huge in comparison.  Also with black hens are naked neck but have well covered heads, whereas the other type have little hats on.  Almost like suede.  I just love them.  I had a little black one hatch a couple of months ago, but as I posted on another thread, it was born too late and just couldn't keep up with its siblings.  My theory was that with no feathers on its neck it lost a lot of body heat, and just didn't grow despite my best efforts to help it along.

They are really fab chooks and I do recommend then - blacks as dual purpose and the reds as good layers but a little smaller for eating unless they are cocks of course.

Our cock is red and he called Clyde and he also has a hat, and of course the two little red hens are his Bonneys because of their bonnets!  How sad am I????

Katie :chook: :chook: :chook: :chook: :chook:
Bonjour et avoir un bon jour !


  • Joined Feb 2008
  • St. Mayeux, Brittany
Re: Bare Neck Chicken
« Reply #7 on: November 08, 2008, 05:16:39 pm »
Oh bless, Clyde and his Bonneys!  Ugly is getting really friendly now and likes to be picked up for a cuddle when I take their food in.  I'm waiting a couple more weeks then when the others are ready for the chop she will come out to join the layers.  Its amazing how quickly they are all growing now, I've felt some nice plump drumsticks already!  When we get the next batch of youngsters (6 wks old) to bring on I'm going to ask for a coq to raise to go in with the ladies so next spring we can start hatching our own hopefully (best laid plans of mice and men as they say).  We've also decided to expand the number of layers we have in the spring and ween them off layers pellets onto the mixed grain which is a lot cheaper.  We'll keep these on layers pellets during the winter though.
« Last Edit: November 08, 2008, 05:23:35 pm by Hilbillie »


  • Joined Jan 2009
Re: Bare Neck Chicken
« Reply #8 on: January 15, 2009, 07:56:03 pm »
no i think theyre called cou-nues meaning naked neck

all round good bird nice eggs and good meat most of the supermarket chickens in france are naked necks.


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