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Golden Laced Wyandotte: Egg Laying, Broodiness and Temperament

gold laced wyandotte

The Golden Laced Wyandotte is possibly one of America’s most beautiful and beloved chickens and one that is hard to mistake with its stunning plumage.

It is a breed that was created in the fairly recent past by poultry farmers looking for a homegrown dual-purpose chicken.

At the time there were few truly dual-purpose breeds available and so they began their quest in search of perfection.

Keep reading to learn more about this lovely chicken and see if it is right for your flock.

History and Background of Golden Laced Wyandottes

The Wyandotte breed was created by four avid poultrymen (H.M. Doubleday, J. Ray, L. Whittaker, and F. Houdlette).

It was named after a helpful and generous Indian tribe of the area – the Wendat (later known as Wyandotte).

Their desire was to create a bird that laid well but could also serve as decent table fare, in other words, a great utility bird. At this time many chickens around were not the best layers and were pretty tough and scrawny.

Although people did eat chicken, it was not top of the list to consider because of its unappealing traits.

Many types of chicken were used in the genetics of the Wyandotte, but since no records were kept, it appears unlikely we will ever know the true composition of the Wyandotte.

It is suspected that the dark Brahma and the silver spangled Hamburg were involved along the way, but no one knows for sure.

Now as for the Golden Laced Wyandotte, this was created by Joseph McKeen of Wisconsin.

He started in 1880 when he crossed Silver laced Wyandottes with a bird described as “a black-red patterned fowl called a Winnebago”. His project was declared successful in 1888 when the Gold Laced Wyandotte was accepted to the APA.


The Golden Laced Wyandotte is basically the same shape as her sister varieties.
Her head is small and sports a rose comb which is ideal for cold climates.

The comb, wattles, face, and ear lobes should all be red. The beak is a yellow/horn color and the eyes are a bay red.

She is a curvy, glamorous, and plump hen. Her neck is short, but well arched making it look longer.

Her back is broad but short and the tail rises up to a perky angle. Legs are well spaced and sturdy (perfect for great balance) and she has four toes on each foot. Leg color is yellow as is the skin.

The rose comb of the Wyandotte is perfect for the colder climates where the breed was originally created. However, very occasionally you will find a Wyandotte with a single comb – a throwback to their ancestors.

There is nothing wrong with these birds, they will lay eggs perfectly well but they should not be used as breeding stock.

Feathering is dense to keep the cold at bay with quite a bit of under-fluff. The feathers should be ‘loose’ but not give the bird a Cochin-like appearance.

Feathers are a gold color with black lacing to the edges of each feather delineating each one perfectly.

Golden Standard

The original Wyandotte was silver laced and it was admitted to the American Poultry Association in 1883. The Gold Laced Wyandotte was admitted to the standard in 1888 along with its much rarer sister – the white.

There are now several varieties of Wyandottes that have been admitted to the APA standard, making a total of nine large breeds and 10 bantams.

The standard breeds that are recognized are:

  • 1883: Silver Laced
  • 1888: Gold Laced, White
  • 1893: Buff, Partridge, and Black
  • 1902: Silver Penciled
  • 1905: Colombian
  • 1977: Blue

The weight of the standard birds is 8½lb for males and 6lb for females. As for bantams, you should expect boys to weigh 26-30oz and the ladies to weigh 24-26oz.

Egg Laying and Broodiness

Golden Laced Wyandotte Roaming
They are good layers of medium-sized light brown eggs laying around 200 eggs per year, or just under 4 per week.

They do make great moms happily raising a batch of chicks for you. Of course, this means the Wyandotte has a tendency to be broody, which is a nuisance if you want eggs, not chicks.

This trait can vary from strain to strain though.

Disposition and Known Health Problems

Many Wyandottes have a strong personalities.

This means they don’t tolerate any other bird trying to peck them or pick on them. They are likely to put the aggressor into their place in very short order. Wyandottes are usually near the top of the pecking order.

Golden Laced Wyandottes are docile with their keepers, although their personalities can be said to be cool or aloof to humans. Many people say they are talkative and friendly but definitely not a lap chicken.

In general, they prefer their own kind and will usually stick together and ignore other breeds.

The Wyandotte is a strong and healthy bird, not prone to any health issues other than the standard parasites. As they are quite densely feathered, lice can be a problem, so keep a close eye and treat them as and when necessary.

All that feathering keeps them warm in winter making them very cold hardy, but summertime can be brutal for them; they need shade and cool water to maintain their comfort and to avoid heatstroke.

Gold Laced Wyandotte

Is The Golden Laced Wyandotte Right For You?

Golden Laced Wyandotte in Flock
If you want an all-American chicken that lays well and can handle the cold, the Wyandotte may be for you.

The Golden lacing of the bird certainly attracts many comments as it is quite stunning especially when highlighted by the sun. The clarity and depth of the lacing will vary from strain to strain; as always you get what you pay for.

Wyandottes are never in a hurry, they take life at their own pace. The only exception to this is when treats are involved, but even then they don’t exactly ‘go wild’.

They are docile, so are tolerant of children, but they are not a chicken that enjoys lap time or cuddling. This type of personality makes for ease of handling especially for newcomers.

As we mentioned before they have quite strong personalities and do not tolerate being bullied, this usually puts them near the top of the pecking order.

They are not bullies though – they prefer their own kind and will stick together ignoring other birds unless there is a problem.

She will do well enough in a confined space but is a great forager if allowed out and about. They can be a bit on the noisy side if you have a bunch of them, so close neighbors might be a problem.

They make great 4H project hens and are known to do well in competition and exhibition venues.


The Golden Laced Wyandotte is a really beautiful bird. The lacing is so intricate and the gold really seems to sparkle in the sun.

If you wanted a bird for ‘eye candy’ alone, this is a contender.

The only downside to this particular bird is its attitude and aloofness. It makes them hard to get to know – they could not care less if you are there or not.

Although some people have had great success with them and would not change them for another breed; so once again, the strain of the bird probably has a lot to do with the personality.

Do you keep Wyandottes? Let us know your experience with them in the comments section below…

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29 thoughts on “Golden Laced Wyandotte: Egg Laying, Broodiness and Temperament

  1. I think I have the Gold Wyandotte but my birds lay white eggs. The other characteristics and appearances are similar to your descriptions.

    1. My brown leghorn (white eggs) has the same markings around her neck as my Gold Wyandotte’s , but the rest of her is plain brown. Maybe that’s what you have?

  2. i have a lovely looking gold laced rooster who is the boss 1 hen who is second and 1 baby from these two the roosters do their job i got a 15 to 18 chick per egg ratio. sadly the mother squished all the eggs but five the other five were cross breed i know because i marked them after they were laid.

  3. I have two 4 week old Golden Laced Wyandottes and they are very cuddly. Lots of personality. I also have 2 Rhode Island Reds and 2 Buff Orpington. I would say they all seem to get along! Fingers crossed it stays that way. The Wyandottes definitely dont let anyone pick on them and I would say are at the top. They posture up on the others the most. I hope they dont become broody.

    1. Hi Lisa. I’m seeing your comment about your Wyandottes, RI Reds, and Buff Orpingtons a year later. I’m wondering how they are getting along now that they have matured as I was considering this combo myself and will be getting chicks this week. Does the Buff get bullied by them at all? How are they all in terms of being loud and noisy overall? I’m in suburbia so I have to be careful about this.

      1. I’m just reading about these birds as I have just purchased 2 of them, 2 buff orpingtons and 2 rhode Island reds. They are only 10 days old and I have them together. So far, they all seem to get along. It is funny to see them all lined up on the same side of the feeder with their heads buried in the food. I hope they will all be good together when they grow up

  4. First chicks this year were 2 blue lace red Wyandotte’s,March1st.
    Don’t understand why they are growing so slow. I even questioned the store owner about possibly having Bantam blood, but no. They are like pinballs. Fast moving, flighty, scared of everything yet stubborn. One insists on snuggling up to a certain Bronze turkey hen that doesn’t like to snuggle. She will endure being pecked till she gets her way. I’ve intervened several times and the Bronze hen seems to understand I don’t want her Peking the lil Wyn-o. Both were purchased the same day.
    May 1st We got 2 1month old Red laced Wyandotte. A full month younger ,yet they’ve outgrown the Blu/Red Wyandotte’s which also do not want me touching them.

  5. 14 chickens and 2 ducks = 1 happy family… 4 gold laced wyandotte, 5 cornish cross, 3 orpington and 2 barred rock… Goldie-gold laced, has a big funny personality- she jumps for worms. Definitely a boss! Only 7 weeks old…

    1. My yorkie, Pingo, and I have a pair of Goldens, Amir and Marcelo. They are very friendly and tolerant of us and our yard full of active, hungry squirrels. They can be playful and somewhat mischievous. Although they are warm with us they are wary of strangers and remember if they have been taunted or terrorized and run from the offender if they come to call. We leave the door open and they will come in for a visit or just to rest a while. Marcelo, in particular, has decided she wants to lay her eggs on the kitchen counter behind the coffee maker; a tribute to my faulty permissiveness.

  6. I have nine hens, all of different breeds. My Golden Laced Wyandotte is beautiful, but she is definitely noisy compared to the rest that are fairly quiet (unless they are proudly announcing a newly laid egg…lol). I live in the country, so her vocals aren’t a problem, however, I wouldn’t recommend them in close proximity to neighbors that might not like the noise.

  7. I have 5 hens. They are wonderful! I agree with the article, they are not lap chickens. They do not like to be picked up either. However they are quite content to follow me where I want them to go and they love to sit next to me on the porch or help when I garden.

    1. My GLW LOVES cuddling. She jumps right on me as soon as she sees me. I was surprised to see the breed is not known for this

  8. I have three Wyandottes, two silver laced one gold. Not quite started laying yet but they certainly stick together. However they let my barnevelder pick on them!

  9. My GLW is a Bantam I believe she was mixed in with black sex link chicks and I had no idea what breed she for a while. She started off the same size but didn’t start really getting much bigger in size until about 4 weeks! She was tiny now full grown But still much smaller than my standard size hens of different breeds. Her eggs are a creamy color and Bantam sized as well. This is by far the most accurate description of GLWs I’ve read, especially there temperament and “personalities”. They certainly will not tolerate being bullied, even when my girl was About 1/3 the size of the rest of the flock, she would run underneath the other legs when everyone ran to get to the food first. Very smart, she used her size to her advantage and would never let anything stop her. Definitely the strongest personality out of my 12 chickens of 9 different breeds! They aren’t the cuddly type, and it’s definitely hard to get to know them. They are hard to explain but, This article really explained there breed well. Oh and it goes without saying they are stunningly gorgeous! They are like little walking supermodels every turn of there head no matter what there doing they could be pooping lol take a picture and it will still be beautiful !

  10. My Wyandotte chickens lay lay a pinkish colored egg like a pinkish tan color I have silver lace and Golden lace the silver lace is more of a tan color the Golden lace is a pinkish color and I also feed them clam shells harden ourselves and it keeps the color better

  11. If you want a hen who lays more eggs than the Wyandotte, and more reliably, take a look at the Red Star . Although they prefer to be able to range and are really good foragers, they can deal with having less land than most other large chicken breeds.

  12. Golden laced Wyndottes are stunning especially in the sunlight. They are more passive then the silver laced variety and when I got my first few goldens I stopped purchasing the silver varieties. These were better. Mix them with a Jungle fowl rooster if you want to really show off the colors. They lay lots of nice big brown eggs and are easy to take care of. Great foragers too.

  13. I have every kind of Wyandotte. They are 7 weeks now. I have 31 birds all different breeds. My silkie is the funny chest bumper the most.. The Wyandottes seem just normal keeping to their own. I have a full grown astrolorp and full grown Easter egged and the astro is my top bird in the pecking order. She comes near and everyone runs lol. My leghorn is my ” dig” bird she follows me sits on my shoulder definitely my lapdog bird.

  14. I have 4 slw and 4 glw. They are 4 weeks old and yes they are all of what the article says except mine let me cuddle with them as long as it’s one at a time and there higher then the rest. Can’t wait to see how the grow up. These lady’s are my first chickens

  15. I raise wyandottes and love them alot, they are such a great brid for where I live in Maine with our winters that we have! I have white, black, chocolate, blue, blue laced and golden laced wyandottes. We also raise call ducks so much fun! I wish we could add pictures on here so we all could share pics of our poultry!!!

  16. I’m a new chicken mom and have 3 month old GLW’s. At least I thought they were until I read that GLW’s have yellow legs/feet. Mine do not. They are more of a gray/blue. Any thoughts?

  17. We have two Golden Wyandottes and they are the most standoffish chickens. They peck a few of the other chickens that are very sweet and now our black Mystic Maran (beautiful bird and great dark brown egg layer! Our favorite!) has a 1.5″ bare spot on top of rear back in front of tail that has huge holes where the feathers were completely pulled out :'( Had to hurt so badly. There mission is to attack the other chickens from behind. I believe their eggs are the smaller ones that are kind of light pink but not sure which are theirs really… I would love to trade someone for them. They have tormented another one and he cannot get his feathers in… I worry about being in coop all winter… They are not sweet at all and we cannot even catch them usually…. Just run around fulling big feathers out… I chase them away and they keep at it. Will never get them again, One was suppose to be another Maran but Tractor Supply messed up… Never again.

  18. Sometimes, I believe non-English spammers attempt to write one thing that is proper English, nevertheless it doesn’t all the time work out that way. Certainly one of my least favourite feedback is “Thanks for this put up, very informative and positively”. I didn’t miss a word. It ends with “positively”. There’s not a lot point itemizing different examples as they hold changing – just watch out for comments that don’t make an entire lot of sense.

  19. This is our first year with chickens. We have 8 GLW’s. They just started laying two weeks ago. We are averaging 6-7 eggs a day. They will eat treats from our hands but complain if you try to touch them. They are very friendly but not cuddly. They talk to us but are not noisy.

    This will be their first NW Montana winter so we’ll see how they do with the snow.

    So far we couldn’t be happier.

  20. I love BUFF Wyandottes. You rarely, if ever, see them. I think that the yellow legs with the golden buff color and the tight rose comb, with the round Wyandotte body is an absolutely beautiful combination. I had them for many years. Presently, I only have one. She is about 8 years old now and her name is Katherine (Catherine). If you get them, you have to make sure you get them from someone who breeds for type, otherwise the point of the comb may rise up, like a Hamburg, instead of following the head like a proper Wyandotte. But take it from me, they are beautiful and lay nice brown eggs.

  21. We have 3 golden Wyandottes and 2 black Marians (I think) — plus two guinea hens (Vanity and Narcissus.). The GLW are just as described — not particularly cuddly — don’t like to be picked up but first in line for treats and do “chatter” a bit. I thought it was me, but they are spot on like described, and one in particular is the “leader” and pecks the others. They do have a large area to roam, so everyone has lots of space. The pack came with 3 roosters (two Cochins and 1 Barnvelder (?); the boys have their own “Club” and roost in a different area so no mingling. (Just alarm clocks.) I do find them all fascinating. Had a bout with a family of black snakes who were constantly in the hen house this summer and that set everyone off of their laying …. But we finally re-homed all of the snakes and things are getting back to normal.

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