Feathered Legged Ameraucana

Well, it happens. It isn’t supposed to, but it does.  The wheaten Ameraucanas have a few hidden genetic traits that pop out and surprise you every once in a while and this year’s hatch is no exception.

There are three feathered legged genes in chickens – PT1, PT2, and PT3. The first two are dominant traits, so only one parents needs to have it for the chicks to show it. Those two are what make the feathered legs on most of the more common feathered legged large fowl – brahmas, Cochins, etc.  The third gene, PT3, is not as common and is recessive.  So, both parents have to be carrying it for it to be expressed in any of their chicks. Apparently, in my main breeding pen, my rooster and at least one of my hens are heterozous for feathered legged gene, PT3.

Only one of the three in these pics have the feathered legs and he will be culled. I can’t use him in a breeding program for Ameraucanas, no matter how pretty he is.

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