Fayoumi Chicken

Fayoumi chicken is a very active and hardy breed originating in Egypt. It is a truly ancient chicken breed and has been raised along the River Nile in Egypt for centuries. And they are named for the Faiyum Governorate southwest of Cairo and west of the Nile.

Egyptians have been raising them since B.C. Fayoumi chickens were first imported to the west during 1940s by a professor from the University of Iowa.

But they are not included in the American Poultry Association’s Standard of Perfection.

Fayoumi chickens are believed to be descendants of jungle fowl hybrids with domestic fowl that have adapted for life in thorn palm forests and marshes in Egypt (about 3,000 years ago).

It’s a very common and popular chicken breed in Egypt and they grow very fast.

Characteristics of Fayoumi Chicken

Fayoumi chickens are quite small in size with large dark eyes and tails held high. They are sometimes likened to a roadrunner with their forward jutting breast and neck and upright tails. They are a light weight chicken breed that appear only in a single variety.

They have slate blue legs, red earlobes and a single medium comb. There are white spot in their earlobes. The skin color of Fayoumi chicken is slate blue and they have dark horn colored beaks.

Hens have silver-white hue color necks and heads with rest barred. And the roosters have plumage with silver-white on the head, neck, saddle and back, with the rest in a white and black barring.

Fayoumi hens are good layers. They lay small size off-white colored eggs. They are not given to broodiness as pullets, but can be when they reach two or three years of age.

They are incredibly resistant to disease which has given them the reputation of being virtually indestructible by bacteria or virus. They are also known to be naturally resistant to Marek’s Disease and to many other illnesses.

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Fayoumi chicken is also one of the fast maturing breeds. Cockerels start crowing at an unbelievable five or six weeks, and hens can begin laying eggs as early as 4 and a half or 5 months.

On an average, a cock weights about 2 kg and a hen weights about 1.6 kg. Silver penciled is the most common and only variety of Fayoumi chicken.


Fayoumi chicken is particularly well suited to hot climates and are very active and hardy breed. They are very good foragers and need very little feed to survive. So they are very economical breed.

Fayoumi chicken will become very vocal when picked up, because they don’t like being handled at all. They will never be fully tamed. Although they can be tamed to a degree with treats. They are lively birds, very flighty and love to roost in trees. So care needs to be taken with boundary fencing.

Fayoumi chicken is bossy but they are not particularly aggressive and roosters are tolerant of each other. Hens are not given to broodiness as pullets, but can be when they reach two or three years of age. So incubation is required for egg hatching.

Fayoumi chickens are very hardy foragers and do well free-range. They have reputation as a good free range predator resistant chicken to raise on your farm or acreage.

They also do well within a large pen or barn and like to roost as high as they can. This breed is very suitable for small farm. Review full breed profile of Fayoumi chicken below.

Breed NameFayoumi
Other NameNone
Breed PurposeOrnamental
Breed TemperamentFriendly, Flighty
Breed SizeMedium
Climate ToleranceDo Well in Hot Climates
Egg ColorOff-White
Egg SizeSmall
Egg ProductivityMedium
Feathered LegsNo
VarietiesSilver Penciled is the Only Variety

The Good

  • Alert
  • Very active
  • Beautiful
  • Efficient layers
  • Economical eaters
  • Friendly
  • Independent
  • Very hardy
  • Protective but not aggressive
  • Very fast maturing breed
  • Roosters are tolerant of each other
  • Very predator resistant
  • Good foragers
  • Perform well in free range and need less feed

The Bad

  • Flighty
  • Sometimes the roosters can be noisy
  • Don’t like being handled
  • Loud
  • Small eggs
  • Not good for meat production

Is Fayoumi Chicken Good for You?

Fayoumi chicken is good for you if you…….

  • Want to raise some very active and hardy birds.
  • Are looking for some chicken breed which are great foragers and perform well in free range.
  • Are looking for beautiful chicken breeds for ornamental purpose.
  • Want to raise some chickens which are economical eaters and require less feeds.
  • Are willing to have some chickens which are small in size and require less space to live.
  • Want to raise some very early maturing chickens.
  • Are searching for predator resistant chicken breed.

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