The White Faced Black Spanish Chicken is one of the oldest breeds out there. It goes by many different names, one of which is Cara Blanca.
Sometimes, this chicken is also referred to as the Clown Faced Chicken. This is because their faces resemble the full white face of a clown. However, aside from the white face, these birds are nothing like clowns. They might catch people’s attention, but you can be sure it is not for silly acts.
These birds hold an air that would remind you of aristocrats, and later on, you will see that they resemble esteemed aristocrats more than any clown in more ways than one.
This article will cover
- Background and History of White Faced Black Spanish
- Breed Standard and Appearance
- Personality and Temperament
- White Faced Black Spanish ChickenEgg Laying
- Health Issues and Care
- 4 Tips for Raising White Faced Black Spanish Chickens
Background and History of White Faced Black Spanish
These birds are one of the oldest of the Mediterranean fowls. Their history has a deep root, and they have been roaming for thousands of years already. The belief is that they have been here even before the conquests.
They are highly associated with Minorcas, but the White Faced Black Spanish Chickens are much older than these fowls. They likely came from the Castilian chickens instead. You can learn about this breed here.
We have the Spaniards to thank for these birds as they originated from their country. The White Faced Black Spanish Chickens are generally known to be one of the earliest birds the Spaniards have allowed going out of their land for distribution to other parts of the world.
For some time, they became one of the crowd favorites of productive birds. However, they lost this title as they got replaced by breeds that were able to provide more, and at the same time, required less when it came to maintenance. In other words, you could say they lost their place in the commercial world.
However, their unique appearance has allowed them to sport a new title. After the White Faced Black Spanish Chickens declined in the market, poultry enthusiasts focused their attention on making this breed an ornamental bird.
They then became a common participant in poultry shows. If you’re interested in seeing these birds in poultry shows, then you can click here to get news regarding poultry shows near you.
Aside from losing their spot in the market, they have also almost lost their place on the planet – completely. At one point, they have become endangered, but fans of the breed have slowly tried to fight for these beauties’ survival.
While they have not regained their commercial status – and it looks like they will not regain it anytime soon – they are surviving and thriving. If you are interested in seeing one or owning one, there are hatcheries still marketing these fowls, such as the Murray Mcmurray Hatchery.
Breed Standard and Appearance
The White Faced Black Spanish Chicken is recognized and accepted by a number of official organizations and associations, such as the American Poultry Association (APA). It was introduced in the association in 1874, only just a year after the organization’s founding.
These birds are on the larger part of the spectrum weighing around 2.5 kg. Their bodies are mostly made up of black feathers that help in accentuating the White Faced Black Spanish Chicken’s most beautiful features. However, under all that feathers, their skin is white.
The White Faced Black Spanish Chicken’s crisp plumage color leads you to turn your attention to its white face from which it got its name. While there are other birds that also sport a white countenance, there does not seem to be any other chicken that holds such a crisp and well-defined full shade. Furthermore, this color extends to their overdeveloped earlobes.
Additionally, it is also impossible to miss this breed’s comb. It sits upon the head like a crown in a bright red shade. It is a single comb with five well-defined points, from which you can also tell if you have a hen or a rooster. It is upright for roosters, while it droops to the side for hens.
Personality and Temperament
One of the reasons the popularity of these birds went down would have to do with their personality. They are not the friendliest birds around, and so they are a little harder to manage than the more companionable breeds.
However, you can’t say they are entirely aggressive birds. White Faced Black Spanish Chickens are just wilder than others. They are not known for bullying other chickens at all. It’s even likely they would run around with the flock. They would just rather roam around than sit on your lap. They are a little like a five-year-old on the playground.
Additionally, they are also flighty and vocal birds, which would pose a problem if you have limited space and you are worried about the neighbors. Furthermore, they would rather be free, but they can still tolerate confinement. If you can give them enough space to move around, you will not have trouble in this area.
In summary, White Faced Black Spanish Chicken would rather run around than be cuddled. Their wild behavior is undoubtedly a challenge one would have to face in handling these birds. On the flip side, this helps with avoiding predators. There’s not a lot of vigilant birds like White Faced Black Spanish Chickens.
White Faced Black Spanish ChickenEgg Laying
They were once renowned for being prolific egg layers. Their egg productivity never really declined; they could still offer you a good number of eggs today. A White Faced Black Spanish Chicken could lay up to 180 white large-sized eggs each year.
Furthermore, they don’t tend to go broody, so collecting their eggs will not be a problem. However, this might pose a problem if you want to hatch and grow your own White Faced Black Spanish chicks. It could be solved if you have other hens on your farm that do tend to go broody.
Health Issues and Care
Another reason this breed has lost its popularity is its susceptibility to health issues. Compared to other breeds, they require more in this area. While they don’t get sick often, they are innately weaker than other birds. In this respect, they need special attention and treatment than other fowls.
However, they were not always like this. Nature did not intend for them to be this frail. This weakness is pretty much man-made. Focus on this breed’s physical appearance and beauty has negatively impacted their health. In a sense, they have a weaker immune system than other birds.
Furthermore, they are not a hardy breed. They are neither hardy to the cold or the heat. You would need to keep a close eye on them when winter or summer rolls in. Proper conditions must be observed and preserved, especially on cold or hot days.
They are not prone to any specific illness, but you have to watch out for their overall health. However, if you manage to keep an ideal condition for these birds, they could live a long and happy life. There have been instances that these birds have lived for more than eight years!
4 Tips for Raising White Faced Black Spanish Chickens
- Ideal Conditions: The key to raising the White Faced Black Spanish Chicken is to keep ideal conditions, as best as you can. Make sure you’re prepared for the cold days and the hot days. Chickens, in general, can die from extremely cold or hot weather, after all.
- Tender Loving Care: Prepare to give lots of tender loving care to your White Faced Black Spanish Chicken. However, maybe not in the way you’d expect. They won’t cozy in for a hug, but make sure you show them love by always keeping an eye out for them.
- Prevention Vs. Cure: Take extra caution with your White Faced Black Spanish Chickens. If you see and think something is wrong with them, do not hesitate to make sure it is not serious. Treating any illness is easier if you see it early on. Minor health issues could already be a serious condition when it comes to your White Faced Black Spanish Chicken.
- Patience: There’s nothing wrong with your White Faced Black Spanish Chicken if you’re not seeing results right away. Overall, White Faced Black Spanish Chickens take their time in maturing. For whatever reason you’re keeping them, don’t expect that you’ll get it immediately.
The White Faced Black Spanish Chickens are undoubtedly one of the most beautiful breeds out there. They could serve you as your award-winning show bird or as one of your most excellent egg layers. However, in exchange, they would need you to take extra good care of them. We do believe they deserve extra tender loving care after everything! Their whole line has already been through a lot in the past, after all.
Don’t let the hard stuff stop you from getting involved in this rewarding experience! At the end of the day, you will not be working for anything. Just imagine these birds on your farm, walking beauties. We think that’s already a motivation to consider adding the White Faced Black Spanish Chickens to your flock.
These birds are not the easiest breed to take care of. The White Faced Black Spanish Chicken is not a breed meant for everyone. However, if you’re up for some challenge and you think you could give them the TLC that these aristocrats deserve, then we believe that these birds would surely reward you. You know what they say nothing good ever comes easy!
Joseph Hudson has been raising chickens for over 15 years. In 2018, he completed the Agriculture & Natural Resources program at Mt. San Antonio College. He currently raises over 1400 chickens on his 7.5-hectare farm. He keeps sharing his experience on raising healthy and happy chickens on Chicken Scratch The Foundry.