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Norfolk Grey Point of Lay

Norfolk Grey Point of Lay
Norfolk Grey Point of Lay Norfolk Grey Point of Lay Norfolk Grey Point of Lay Norfolk Grey Point of Lay Norfolk Grey Point of Lay
Breed: Norfolk Grey
Product Code: ng4
Availability: In Stock
Price: £22.00
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The Norfolk Grey has had a very chequered career since it’s creation by Fred Myhill near Norwich between 1910 and 1912. Myhill was on the point of registering the breed when he was called up to fight in France in 1914. On his return he found that all his breeding development had been ruined as his birds had been allowed to roam and had been breeding with the local cockerels. Starting from scratch, by 1920 he had a working flock of hens breeding true and entered some birds at the Dairy Show.

Unfortunately he decided to call them Black Marias, the slang name of a German artillery gun that emitted a lot of black smoke, and when that didn’t catch on he re-named them Norfolk Grey. Although the  Norfolk Grey had a strong following amongst local farmers, it was largely confined to Norfolk, and after Myhill’s death in the late 1950s the breed all but became extinct. In the 1980’s Roland Axman, a rare breed enthusiast from Norfolk helped to revive the breed’s fortunes and got the Norfolk Grey registered on the Rare Poultry Society list. In 1984 he exhibited some Norfolk Greys at the Royal Norfolk Show and caused quite a stir.

The Norfolk Grey is a much under-rated hen that is hardy, friendly, and always seems totally unaffected by bad weather; it is one of the very best foragers and as a result is very cheap to keep, and ideally suited for anyone with limited experience of poultry keeping. As you can see from the photographs the Male is the more striking of the sexes, but both have an attractive beetle-green sheen on their black feathers.

I have kept this breed now for several years and the only drawback is the shortage of other breeders and therefore a limited supply of fresh bloodlines. The breed is on the rare breeds list, but I hope I can persuade some first time poultry keepers to keep them, as it really important to keep this breed going.

Description

The Norfolk Grey has had a very chequered career since it’s creation by Fred Myhill near Norwich between 1910 and 1912. Myhill was on the point of registering the breed when he was called up to fight in France in 1914. On his return he found that all his breeding development had been ruined as his birds had been allowed to roam and had been breeding with the local cockerels. Starting from scratch, by 1920 he had a working flock of hens breeding true and entered some birds at the Dairy Show.

Unfortunately he decided to call them Black Marias, the slang name of a German artillery gun that emitted a lot of black smoke, and when that didn’t catch on he re-named them Norfolk Grey. Although the  Norfolk Grey had a strong following amongst local farmers, it was largely confined to Norfolk, and after Myhill’s death in the late 1950s the breed all but became extinct. In the 1980’s Roland Axman, a rare breed enthusiast from Norfolk helped to revive the breed’s fortunes and got the Norfolk Grey registered on the Rare Poultry Society list. In 1984 he exhibited some Norfolk Greys at the Royal Norfolk Show and caused quite a stir.

The Norfolk Grey is a much under-rated hen that is hardy, friendly, and always seems totally unaffected by bad weather; it is one of the very best foragers and as a result is very cheap to keep, and ideally suited for anyone with limited experience of poultry keeping. As you can see from the photographs the Male is the more striking of the sexes, but both have an attractive beetle-green sheen on their black feathers.

I have kept this breed now for several years and the only drawback is the shortage of other breeders and therefore a limited supply of fresh bloodlines. The breed is on the rare breeds list, but I hope I can persuade some first time poultry keepers to keep them, as it really important to keep this breed going.

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