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    Chicken Breed

    An ornamental breed known for their game-like appearance and long tails.


    Authored by Sam Peterson

    Breed type


    Egg color


    Pen or free-range?

    Does well in either


    Can be flighty

    Yokohama quick facts

    Lifespan: 6-8 years

    Weight: Females (Hens) - 4 to 6 lbs; Males (Roosters) - 5 to 7 lbs.

    Appearance: Pure white or red-saddled with long tails of feathers

    Egg Production: Approx. 100 eggs per year

    Good for Beginners: Yes

    History of Yokohama birds

    The Yokohama is an ornamental breed known for their game-like appearance and long tails. They are descended from famed Japanese long-tailed breeds, which were known to grow tails as long anywhere from 2 to 12 meters long. These long-tailed show chickens—like the Onagadori—found a following in Germany during the 19th century and were used to develop several popular modern breeds. The Yokohama is one of these descendants, a German breed named after the Japanese port of Yokohama. Though the breed has been around abroad for many years, here it was only recently standardized by the American Poultry Association in 1981.

    Temperment and good-to-knows

    The temperament of Yokohamas can vary widely, but most owners agree they are quite friendly. Fitting for their game-like appearance, ​this breed of chicken can be highly active​ and​​ alert​. They love room to roam and make great free-rangers and foragers if you have the room to do so. It is recommended to allow them plenty of room to roam with their long tails, especially in a larger flock. They are not aggressive birds and may not mix well with more assertive breeds that sit high on the pecking order.

    As an ornamental breed, Yokohama does not have great egg ​laying ​or meat production. Their small size makes them unsuitable for meat. Yokohamas will lay anywhere around 100 small, tinted eggs per year, with a strong tendency to go broody as well. Depending on your priorities, this may be a bonus, as Yokohama hens are known as fine mothers. Owners may be able to hatch their own Yokohamas or have their hens hatch eggs from other breeds.

    Visual characteristics of Yokohama birds

    What immediately stands out about the Yokohama breed is their graceful, flowing appearance, the product of many white feathers that end at the end of a long tail. Though Yokohama tails may not grow if their ancestors, the Onagadori, strike a great compromise between beauty, hardiness, and maintenance. The extremely long tails of Onagadori required many hours of careful care and special perches in order to keep their tails out of the mud. They were also not seen as hardy chickens and struggled without proper care or environment. The care needs of Yokohamas are simplified on this front but keep a tail long enough to ‘wow’ viewers. With the proper care, tails of three to four feet long can be grown by healthy Yokohamas. This breed is structurally quite like the Phoenix and Sumatra chickens, both of which were used in the creation of the Yokohama.

    While other breeds come in many different color varieties, the Yokohama is known only for its pure white and red-saddled variants​–known more formally as the White Yokohama and Red Shouldered Yokohama breeds​. These simple, understated color patterns let the gracefulness of the Yokohama shine. The contrast between their white tailfeathers and red saddle feathers is an appealing, classic combination. They have waddles and short combs which range from a deep red to pink, along with bare yellow feet. They are slightly smaller birds that clock in at around 5 pounds for males and 4 pounds for females, with bantam varieties also available. The simplistic beauty of Yokohama looks great on show or as part of a backyard flock.

    Health and care

    Unlike its picky ancestors, the Yokohama is quite the hardy breed, though it much prefers warmer climates as opposed to cold and wet ones. They are not well-adapted to extreme cold and will suffer, especially if their environment is wet. Yokohamas with especially long tails may need cleaning or areas to self-clean. If you provide ​this chicken breed​​ ​with elevated perches, they will be happy! Keeping them warm and dry​ in their coop​ should be primary concerns alongside general bird care and maintenance.

    Frequently asked questions about Yokohama chickens

    What do Yokohama chickens eat?

    Yokohama chickens do best with a varied but balanced diet that includes grains, seeds, insects and vegetation.

    Do Yokohama chickens require special housing?

    While Yokohama chickens don't have specific housing requirements, they do well in spacious and well-ventilated coops with adequate protection from predators.

    Are Yokohama chickens cold hardy?

    Yokohama chickens are moderately cold hardy. They can tolerate colder temperatures, but in extremely cold climates, breeders and owners should ensure they have proper coop housing, including protective insulation, to keep them warm.

    What color eggs do Yokohama chickens lay?

    Yokohama chickens lay eggs with a distinct cream-colored shell that’s both visually appealing and unique.

    Are Yokohama chickens suitable for free ranging?

    Yes–this breed can adapt well to free-ranging, as they are good foragers and enjoy exploring their surroundings.

    Everything your flock needs

    Chicken Care Guide

    Find all the information you need about raising chickens. Get an overview, then find helpful links to more in-depth education.

    Read more >

    Coops, Pens and Nesting Boxes

    Browse coops for the perfect roosting spot and space for laying all those eggs. Don't forget nesting boxes, bedding, fencing materials to bring it together.

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    Poultry Feed and Treats

    Find starter feed, layer feed and scratch grain, as well as delicious treats and live insects.

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    Poultry Care

    Shop poultry supplements, pest control and dewormers. Prepare for illness and injury with a stocked first aid kit.

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