Trio of Ameraucana hens. Photo: Steven Walling
Thanks to Martha Stewart, everyone knows that Araucana chickens lay blue-shelled eggs; and again, thanks to Martha's commercial zeal, many living rooms are painted that blue color--giving new meaning to the paint term "eggshell finish".
With the word "Americana" on all our lips this Independence Day weekend, and the possibility of social gaffes looming when the party conversation turns, as it inevitably does, to poultry, here's the difference between Ameraucanas and Araucanas.
- The breeds evolved separately and both come in lots of colors, so you can't tell by the feathers.
- Ameraucanas have tails.
- Araucanas have ear tufts.
- Both breeds lay blue eggs, have pea combs and red earlobes.
You didn't know that chickens had earlobes until just now, did you?
Here's the tricky part. Ameraucanas are very rare:
- If the hen lays blue eggs and the owner says it's an Ameraucana, odds are it's actually a mixed-breed hen in the catch-all category of Easter Egger. A real Ameraucana has slate-blue legs.
But don't bring that up, unless you want to ruin the Fourth of July party.
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