It is a decent layer and a good table bird for hobbyists who wish to combine utility with a little living history. The breed is hardy and makes a good backyard hen. However the rarity of the breed can cause some difficulties. Hens can be rather untrustworthy as broodies.
- Developed by Professor Punnett and Mr Pease at Cambridge in the first half of the 20th century as an auto-sexing breed with the characteristics of a Light Sussex, the leading breed at the time
- Brown Sussex and Barred Rocks were used initially to create the auto-sexing plumage with utility strains of Light Sussex added to improve productivity
- The breed was standardised in 1952
- Although popular in the Auto-sexing Breeds Association, Brussbars never caught on commercially and so have remained very rare, only surviving through the 1960s thanks to one breeder near Bedford
- The Brussbar is a large well-built bird, similar in size and shape to a Sussex.
- The breed originally came in gold and silver but the silver is now extinct.
- The Brussbar has the distinctive ‘crele’ plumage, a mix of blonde and gold with barring throughout.
- The breast, upper legs and tail have barred grey plumage.
Did you know?
The Brussbar is an auto-sexing breed. Unlike chicks of other breeds which look the same on hatching, the chicks of auto-sexing breeds look very different depending on sex, with male chicks tending to be much lighter than brown female chicks.
The Rare Breeds Survival Trust is the leading national charity working to conserve and protect the United Kingdom's rare native breeds of farm animals from extinction. We rely on the support of our members, grants and donations from the public to raise the £700,000 a year needed to maintain our conservation work with rare UK native breeds of farm animals. Visit www.rbst.org.uk to see how you can help.