Chicken Breeds with Arching Tails

By Chicken Pets on
Chicken Breeds with Arching Tails

Welcome to the fascinating world of arching-tailed chicken breeds! In this blog post, we’ll delve into the unique characteristics of these special birds and how to easily recognize them.

Chicken Breeds with Arching Tails

Arching-tailed chicken breeds are recognized for their distinct, elevated tail feathers that curve upwards elegantly. Some popular examples include the Sumatra, Phoenix, and Yokohama, each boasting their own unique traits and personalities.

Discovering the Beauty of Arching-Tailed Chickens

Arching-tailed chickens exude beauty and grace, making them a popular choice for backyard chicken enthusiasts who want to add some flair to their flock. But aside from their stunning appearance, these birds also boast distinctive personalities and behaviors. Let’s explore some of the most popular breeds with arching tails and what makes them unique.

Sumatra Chickens

Originating from the island of Sumatra in Indonesia, Sumatra chickens are known for their long, graceful tails and multiple spurs on each leg. Exhibiting both beauty and strength, this breed is perfect for those who value a striking appearance in their backyard flock.

Physical Characteristics

Sumatra chickens are equipped with lustrous, sleek plumage that comes in a variety of colors, including black, blue, and white. Their arching tails are characterized by long, flowing sickle feathers that can reach impressive lengths. Male Sumatras usually have three to five spurs on each leg, setting them apart from other arching-tail breeds.

Personality and Behavior

Sumatras are known for their agility and intelligence, making them excellent foragers. They’re also fairly independent, preferring to roam free and roost in trees, so a large, secure outdoor space is a must for this breed. While they are generally friendly, the roosters can be aggressive toward other males, so it’s essential to monitor their interactions closely.

Phoenix Chickens

The Phoenix is an elegant, long-tailed breed created in Germany through the careful crossbreeding of several Asian chicken breeds. Known for their incredible plumage, Phoenix chickens have gained a loyal following among poultry enthusiasts.

Physical Characteristics

Phoenix chickens come in numerous color variations, such as silver, black-breasted red, and golden – all with shimmering, iridescent feathers that shine in the sunlight. The breed’s distinctive arching tail consists of saddle and sickle feathers that can grow exceptionally long, up to 3 feet in some cases.

Personality and Behavior

These eye-catching birds have a calm and gentle temperament, making them a favorite among those who desire low-key backyard companions. Phoenix chickens require plenty of space to roam, but they also enjoy human interaction and will often approach their owners with curiosity.

Yokohama Chickens

Yokohama chickens are a Japanese long-tailed breed that savvy poultry enthusiasts highly regard for their exquisite feathering. The breed is perfect for individuals who can dedicate the time and effort needed to maintain their beautiful but delicate plumage.

Physical Characteristics

This charming breed showcases long, cascading tails that arch gracefully and often extend several feet in length. Yokohama chickens come in two primary color variations: Red-saddled and White. The Red-saddled variety has a beautiful, intricate plumage pattern with deep red feathers adorned with black, while the White Yokohama boasts snowy-white feathers.

Personality and Behavior

Yokohamas are docile and friendly birds, known for their adaptability and intelligent disposition. Keep in mind they prefer a quiet, stress-free environment, as stress can impede the growth of their magnificent tail feathers.

Practical Tips for Raising Arching-Tailed Chickens

Although these chicken breeds are beautiful additions to any backyard, their unique physical traits require extra care and consideration. Here are some practical tips to ensure that your arching-tailed breeds stay healthy and happy:

  • Spacious and Secure Coop: Arching-tailed chickens require a larger coop than typical breeds, as their long tail feathers need extra space. Additionally, make sure their indoor and outdoor areas are predator-proof.
  • Higher Roosts: These birds usually prefer to roost higher off the ground, so install roosting bars at varying heights to accommodate their natural instincts.
  • Maintaining Plumage: Keep an eye on your chickens’ tails, and remove any broken or damaged feathers. These breeds may require a sheltered area when it’s raining, as wet tail feathers are prone to breakage.
  • Diet and Nutrition: Provide a balanced diet that includes a variety of nutrients to promote feather growth and support their overall health.
  • Monitoring Social Interactions: Some arching-tailed breeds, such as Sumatras, may have aggressive tendencies towards other males. Monitor their interactions closely and separate them when necessary.

Benefits of Adding Arching-Tailed Breeds to Your Flock

Including arching-tailed breeds in your backyard flock offers several exciting benefits:

  • Aesthetic Appeal: These breeds add visual interest to your flock with their striking colors and extravagant tail feathers.
  • Unique Personalities: From Sumatra chickens’ intelligence to Phoenix chickens’ gentle demeanor, arching-tailed breeds boast engaging and diverse personalities.
  • Increased Chicken Diversity: Introducing new breeds into your flock promotes genetic diversity, which can help to keep your flock hearty and healthy.

While raising arching-tailed chickens may require extra attention compared to standard breeds, the rewards of their captivating beauty and charming personalities are well worth the effort. Follow our practical tips, and you’ll be well on your way to creating a healthy, happy, and enchanting backyard flock.

Caring for Long-Tailed Feather Growth

One of the main appeals of arching-tailed chicken breeds is their stunning long tail feathers. To ensure proper development and maintenance of these feathers, it is essential to provide the right care to your long-tailed chickens.

Proper Grooming

Gently groom their tails using a soft-bristled brush, removing any dirt or debris. Avoid yanking or pulling on the feathers, as this can lead to breakage.

Protection from Parasites

Mites and lice can pose a significant threat to your chickens’ beautiful tail feathers. Regularly check your chickens for any signs of infestation, and apply diatomaceous earth or other natural treatments to keep parasites at bay.

Understanding Arching-Tailed Chickens’ Ideal Climate

The ideal living conditions for arching-tailed breeds often depend on their origin. Understanding their specific climate preferences can help you create a comfortable and healthy environment for these special birds.

Sumatra Chickens

Sumatra chickens are native to a tropical climate, so they usually prefer warm, humid environments. However, they can tolerate colder climates when provided with proper shelter and protection against drafts.

Phoenix and Yokohama Chickens

Phoenix and Yokohama breeds are adaptable to a wide range of climates, but they require shelter and protection from extreme temperatures, rain or snow, and strong winds. Their long tail feathers may need additional care during wet or damp weather.

Choosing Compatible Breeds for Your Flock

When incorporating arching-tailed breeds into your flock, it is crucial to select compatible chicken breeds that share similar temperaments, needs, and environmental preferences. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Sumatra Chickens: Compatible breeds include Asil and Shamo, which share their intelligence and independence but require careful supervision to avoid aggression.
  • Phoenix Chickens: Sebrights, Sicilian Buttercups, and Silver Spangled Hamburgs are all adaptable and calm breeds that can nicely complement a Phoenix’s laid-back nature.
  • Yokohama Chickens: Consider adding Houdan or Silkie chickens to your flock, as these gentle breeds can coexist peacefully with docile Yokohama birds.

By selecting compatible breeds and providing the necessary care and attention, you can create a harmonious and eye-catching flock filled with arching-tailed breeds that are both entertaining and beautiful.

Frequently Asked Questions about Arching-Tailed Chickens

To help you better understand arching-tailed chicken breeds, we’ve compiled a list of frequently asked questions and their answers. These details can help you determine if these special backyard birds are the right fit for your flock.

1. How long do arching-tailed chicken breeds’ feathers grow?

Feather length varies depending on the breed, but long tail feathers in breeds such as Phoenix and Yokohama can grow several feet in length. Some impressive specimens have even been recorded with tails over 10-12 feet long.

2. Do long tail feathers require any special care?

Yes, their long tail feathers require extra attention, such as regular grooming, proper nutrition to support feather growth, and protection from wet or damp conditions that can cause damage or breakage.

3. Are arching-tailed breeds good layers?

While they’re not typically known for their egg production, most arching-tailed breeds, like Sumatras, Phoenix, and Yokohamas, can lay a fair number of small to medium-sized eggs throughout the year, making them reasonable layers.

4. How do I accommodate perching preferences of arching-tailed chickens?

These breeds prefer roosting higher off the ground, so install roosting bars at varying heights that allow them to choose a comfortable spot, and ensure the coop has plenty of space to prevent feather damage during perching.

5. Are these breeds friendly with children?

While each individual bird’s personality varies, arching-tailed breeds such as Yokohama and Phoenix tend to be gentle and docile, making them suitable companions for families with children. It’s important, however, to teach children how to properly handle and interact with these delicate birds.

6. How do I protect long-tailed breeds from predators?

Ensuring your flock has a secure, predator-proof coop and outdoor space is crucial, particularly for arching-tailed breeds that need extra protection for their long feathers. Implement measures such as hardware cloth, sturdy coop construction, and well-latched doors.

7. What kind of diet should I provide for arching-tailed chickens?

Offer your chickens a balanced diet, containing a variety of essential nutrients to support their overall health and feather growth. A high-quality layer feed along with appropriate supplements, such as oyster shells, can provide the necessary nutrition.

8. Can I keep multiple arching-tailed breeds in the same flock?

Yes, arching-tailed breeds can generally coexist well together. However, some breeds like Sumatras may have aggressive tendencies toward other males, so it’s essential to monitor interactions and separate them if necessary.

9. Are arching-tailed chicken breeds good foragers?

Yes, most arching-tailed breeds, such as Sumatra and Phoenix, are excellent foragers, making use of their agility and intelligence to find food in their environment. Providing them with ample space to roam and forage is beneficial.

10. Can arching-tailed chickens tolerate cold weather?

Arching-tailed breeds, like Sumatras and Yokohamas, can tolerate cold weather with proper shelter and preparation. Ensure your birds have a warm, draft-free coop and access to fresh water that doesn’t freeze during colder temperatures.

11. Do long-tailed chicken breeds need to be regularly bathed?

No, arching-tailed chickens do not require bathing. They usually keep themselves clean through natural dust bathing. However, you should regularly groom their long tail feathers with a soft-bristled brush to remove any dirt or debris.

12. How many eggs can I expect from these breeds per year?

Arching-tailed chickens are not prolific layers, but each breed varies in production. For example, Sumatras can lay around 100 eggs per year, while Phoenixes lay around 150 eggs per year. Yokohama chickens can lay 80-100 eggs annually.

13. How long do arching-tailed chicken breeds live?

The lifespan of arching-tailed breeds varies depending on factors such as genetics, diet, and overall care. However, with proper care, these breeds can live anywhere from 5 to 8 years, with some even living beyond 10 years in optimal conditions.

Like what you see? Share with a friend.


Popular posts from the hen house.

Egg-cellent job on making it to the footer, welcome to the egg-clusive chicken club! At, we are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program and other affiliate programs. This means that, at no cost to you, we may earn commissions by linking to products on and other sites. We appreciate your support, as it helps us to continue providing valuable content and resources to our readers.