Polish chickens have one of the most unusual appearances of all chicken breeds available today.
These beautiful birds come in standard and bantam sizes and are available in various colors and patterns.
But the most notable feature of the Polish chicken is the fluffy crest of feathers on its head.
The head feathers grow long enough to cover the Polish chicken’s red color eyes and obstruct its vision.
Since the Polish chicken cannot see very well, it has a seemingly anxious temperament even though it has a sweet personality.
Because of their abundance of feathers, Polish chickens are not suited for wet or cold climates.
Special care must be taken to keep the crest of feathers dry and warm in the winter months to avoid frostbite on the Polish rooster’s v-shaped comb.
They are not prolific egg layers.
Still, backyard chicken enthusiasts adore the Polish chicken’s fuzzy appearance and calm temperament.
Polish chickens begin laying eggs earlier than most heritage breeds and may be encouraged to lay more eggs with high-quality feed.
Read on to learn more about Polish chicken eggs and laying habits.
Are Polish Chickens Good Egg Layers?
Polish chickens are not known as reliable egg layers. If a Polish hen is not fed a nutritious diet, she may stop laying eggs altogether. While Polish chickens are somewhat cold-hardy, they prefer a warm climate and may not lay eggs during the cold months.
Since Polish chickens are small, with an average size between 4-6 pounds, and not prolific egg layers, so they are often kept as ornamental birds.
Ornamental breeds, like the Polish, are often raised strictly for exhibition purposes.
And they are a popular choice in poultry shows.
Aside from being beautiful exhibition birds, many backyard flock owners raise Polish chickens as pets.
These friendly chickens love being held and get along well with children.
Polish chickens often get a reputation for being flighty or skittish because they do not see very well, but they just need reassurance to feel safe.
It is recommended to handle Polish chickens very gently and give them a great deal of affection.
These gentle birds are best-suited to compassionate chicken enthusiasts who can devote extra time and special consideration to give them the support they need.
How Many Eggs Do Polish Chickens Lay?
On average, Polish hens will lay around 2 to 3 eggs per week. Yearly egg production in Polish chickens ranges from 150-200 eggs. Once Polish chickens begin laying, their egg production is usually consistent.
Although Polish chickens are not prolific layers, many backyard chicken keepers do not mind.
This is because they understand these birds are an ornamental breed.
To raise chickens for fresh farm eggs, you may want to consider more persistent layers like the Leghorn, Rhode Island Red, or Buff Orpingtons.
However, Polish chicken is the best choice if you want a beautiful chicken with personality.
These beloved chickens have remained a backyard flock favorite. This is largely due to their bouffant of feathers and curious, friendly personalities.
When Do Polish Chickens Start Laying Eggs?
Polish chickens start laying eggs when they are around five months old, much earlier than other heritage chicken breeds. Some heritage chickens do not begin laying eggs until they are more than eight months old, while standard breeds may start laying as early as 18 weeks of age.
Polish chickens traveled from continental Europe to England in the 18th century before coming to North America in the late 1800s.
This makes the Polish chicken one of the oldest heritage breeds of chickens in the United States.
The age at which chickens start laying eggs directly correlates to how old they are when egg production begins to decline.
Hens laying eggs at a young age will have decreased egg production earlier in life compared to those getting a late start.
Polish chickens have an average lifespan of 8 to 9 years, and their peak egg production occurs within the first 2 to 3 years.
Once the birds are 3 or 4 years old, the hens start laying fewer eggs before a significant decrease in egg production at 6 to 7 years of age.
How Do You Encourage Polish Chickens To Lay More Eggs?
Polish chickens lay more eggs when fed a layer feed with a high protein content of at least 16%. In addition to a high-quality layer feed, egg-laying Polish hens also require a calcium supplement. The extra calcium supports bone health as well as eggshell development.
A high-quality layer feed, such as this one, contains 16% protein from tasty grubs and other essential vitamins and minerals.
In addition to their regular diet of high-protein feed, you may give your Polish hens occasional treats like mealworms, cracked corn, and finely chopped greens to stimulate egg production.
Your Polish hens will also be encouraged to lay more eggs when provided with plenty of fresh water, clean nesting boxes, and open areas to free-range during the day.
It is also recommended to regularly inspect your Polish hens for signs of injuries or parasites.
Treating problems right away ensures you have healthier hens who produce more eggs.
Do not be concerned if your Polish hens lay fewer eggs in winter.
Egg production naturally decreases in most chicken breeds during cold weather before increasing again in the spring.
Your Polish hens will never be prolific egg layers, but by following these tips, you will have more consistent egg production.
Do Polish Chickens Lay Green Eggs?
Polish chickens generally lay white eggs, but very rarely, the eggs may have a slight blue or green tint due to a pigment known as biliverdin. This green pigment only occurs when the spleen does not convert biliverdin into bilirubin or when a Polish hen has been cross-bred with an Easter Egger.
If you see a greenish egg in your Polish hen’s nesting box, there is no need to be concerned.
Green egg color does not signify an illness in Polish hens, but it is simply a random phenomenon caused by body processes.
If you know your Polish hen results from cross-breeding with an Easter Egger chicken, you will likely see green eggs in the nest.
The only breed of chickens known to reliably lay green eggs is the Olive Egger.
Olive Eggers are technically not a separate breed, but they are a cross between a blue egg layer and a dark brown egg layer.
For instance, if an Ameraucana hen mates with a Marans rooster, the resulting hen chicks will be Olive Eggers and lay olive-colored eggs.
Do Polish Chickens Want To Hatch Their Eggs?
Polish chickens are raised as show birds, and the hens rarely go broody long enough to hatch baby chicks. While Polish hens are beautiful and intelligent, they do not possess much in the way of motherly instincts and have little desire to raise their baby chicks.
This is not to say your Polish hen will never go broody, but the chances are slim.
Even if your Polish hen does manage to go broody, she will not likely sit on her eggs long enough for them to hatch.
If you are interested in hatching your Polish chicken eggs, you will probably need to invest in an egg incubator.
Modern chicken incubators take most of the guesswork from hatching eggs by maintaining consistent temperatures and humidity levels.
Some incubators also periodically turn the eggs to ensure even incubation and simultaneous hatching.
You may also consider placing the eggs in the nest of a broody hen from a different breed, such as a Silkie or Cochin chicken.
Silkies and Cochins are both well-known for their broodiness and willingness to hatch another hen’s eggs and raise the baby chickens as their own.
Some of these hens will even hatch the eggs from other species, like ducks or quails.
How Long Do Polish Chicken Eggs Take To Hatch?
It takes an average of 21 days for Polish chicken eggs to hatch. If the eggs have not hatched within 23 days, you must check the eggs by candling them to see if they are viable. The baby chick will completely emerge from the egg in 5-7 hours, but sometimes the process may take 24 hours to complete.
It is unlikely for all of the eggs in the clutch to hatch at the same time.
The peeping from the baby chicks who have already hatched usually encourages the others to begin hatching.
If you are hatching your Polish chicken eggs in an incubator, there is a high probability some of them will not hatch at all.
The hatch rate for incubated eggs is relatively low, with the highest rate being close to 50%.
Removing unhatched eggs from the nesting box or incubator is crucial once you have determined they are not viable.
Unhatched eggs will begin to rot and spread dangerous bacteria if left with the others.
Further Reading: Sexing the Polish Chicken Rooster Vs. Hen