Chief is our Black Australorp rooster.
Australorps originated in Australia and became a popular breed in the 1920’s after breaking world records for egg laying.
I love them for their glossy black feathers, shimmering with green.
Their red combs and wattles against the black plumage is really striking.
When crossbred with other breeds, like the Buff Orpington, their eye color is often dominant, producing gorgeous golden birds with black eyes.
Australorps also produce light brown eggs.
Recently, Chief developed black spots with white on his comb.
I’m watching him and my hens carefully for any other signs.
Chickens can actually get a form of pox (not the same as human chicken pox) that is spread by mosquitoes and lasts a few weeks.
Chief has had these spots for about two months, and I’ve noticed they’re slowly disappearing.
He’s never acted sick, so if it was a virus, it was the dry form and mild.
This was a first. Having raised chickens for twenty years, we’ve never had any viral issues.
We did have a lot more moisture and heat toward the end of our long summer this year- and that brings mosquitoes.
More about Avian Pox here.
He’s a beautiful rooster and should help produce some gorgeous chicks next spring!