Sebright Chicken– Characteristics, Origin, Breed Info and Lifespan


Here in this article, you will learn everything that you need to know about the Sebright chicken.

You will get to learn about its characteristics, egg-laying capacity and other unique features.

Sadly, the Sebright chickens are not great egg-laying birds.

So, don’t expect so much from them.

However, there are other amazing things about the Sebright chicken that makes it stand out.

Continue reading to get all the facts about them.

Table of Contents

What is a Sebright Chicken?

The Sebright Chicken is a dynamic and true Bantam Chicken.

This means that it is a very small chicken that has no equivalent bigger counterparts.

It’s the oldest British Bantam breed used for ornamental purposes.

Because of its miniature size, it is not best for meat production neither is it a prolific egg layer.

Therefore, unlike most other Chicken breeds, the Sebright Chicken is not a dual-purpose breed.

Just as the name sounds the Sebright chicken is bright, captivating, beautiful and attractive in appearance.

Despise its petite appearance, you can call it a mighty chicken.

And just so you know, it’s was named after its creator.

What is the Origin and History of a Sebright Chicken?

The Sebright Chicken is the product of Sir John Saunders Sebright’s creative ideology and artistic dispensation.

This bantam breed came into existence in the 19th century as an ornamental breed.

He was the 7th  Baronet of Besford Worcestershire and a member of the parliament of Hertfordshire. 

He was also a breeder of cattle, pigeons, chickens and other animals.

Sir John Sebright wrote a number of small booklets on animal keeping and breeding.

His write-ups helped Charles Darwin in his inception of Darwin’s theory of natural selection.

Most creative John Sebright wanted to bring into existence a small bantam with a beautifully laced plumage.

So he did different cross breedings to make Sebright chicken a reality.

However, the true composition of this breed remains unknown and hidden.

But it is speculated that the Nankin, Hamburg, Polish and Rosecomb breeds were used in the forming Sebright.

Despite some challenges, Sir John Sebright finally achieved his goal and the Sebright Chicken came into existence.

Also around the year 1810, he founded the first single breed association for chickens and called it the Sebright Bantam Club.

And finally, in 1874, the Sebright Chicken was added to the first Standard of Perfection of the American Poultry Association.

Nowadays, the Sebright Chicken is known as one of the ten most popular bantam chicken breeds.

Sebright chicken

What are the Characteristics of the Sebright Chicken?

The carefully made features of the Sebright Chicken are very captivating. 

Let’s look at their unique features;

1. The Sebright’s are ornamental breeds:

Indeed the Sebright Chicken is a beauty to look upon.

They have quite an attractive appearance.

With its laced plumage and stylish nature, it has warmed its way into the hearts of people during shows.

2. The Sebright chicken is a true Bantam:

The Sebright Chicken was created as a true Bantam Breed.

This means that it has no standard counterpart.

And it’s very smallish in nature.

The males weigh about 620g (22 ounces) and the females about 510g (20 ounces).

3. Not good for meat production:

Because of the miniature size of the Sebright Chicken, they make poor meat producers.

Therefore raising a Sebright Chicken for meat wouldn’t be a good idea.

4. These little birds are friendly and active:

Apart from the fact that they are beautiful, Sebrights are also very friendly and active.

This makes them very easy to interact with and also very easy to train for shows and competitions

You could easily fall in love with them.

5. Sebright are not prolific egg layers:

Because they are developed mostly as show birds, these little birds do not produce abundant eggs for the household.

You wouldn’t count on a Sebright for your big egg production.

Because all you would get are a bunch of small eggs mostly an average of 60 – 80 eggs in a year.

6. They have colour varieties:

The American Bantam Association had accepted two standard Sebright colours which are Silver laced and Gold laced.

But the Buff laced Sebright Chicken also exist.

7. Sebright chicken are strong fliers:

Because of their enormous wings that are approximately bigger than their bodies, they can fly very well.

Especially when frightened or startled by an external force.

8. These birds are not very broody:

The Sebright hen rarely goes broody.

And they do not make exceptional mothers.

So, you would be better of raising your Sebright Chicks in an incubator or allowing another broody hen to play the mother.

9. Sebright chickens are not very good foragers:

Because of their size, the Sebright Chicken does not make excellent foragers.

As they can easily fall prey to other bigger animals.

10. It is hard to differentiate a Sebright rooster from a Sebright hen:

This is so because both male and female Sebright has the exact same feathering.

Table summarizing the Sebright Breed information

Skin colourYellow
Egg colourWhite
Comb typeRose
Especially DocileNo
UseOrnamental breed show and exhibition
Cold HardinessHardy in winter
Conservation statusThreatened
Heat ToleranceTolerates heat well.
Also Known AsSebright
PersonalityFriendly, Active Spritely and cheeky.
Country of originUnited Kingdom
StandardTrue BantamSoft feather-light breed
Bears ConfinementBears confinement well 
WeightMale: 620g or 20 – 22 ozFemale: 510g or 18 – 20 oz
VarietiesSilver lacedGold lacedBuff laced

Why Choose Sebright Chicken?

Below are a few reasons why Sebright Chicken may be the right chicken breed for you.

1. They are cold hardy:

If you reside in very cold climates, the Sebright Chicken could be a good catch.

2.  Sebrights are Friendly and interactive:

If you want a good bird you can form a cordial and entertaining relationship with, then the Sebright chicken could be quite useful.

3. They are naturally beautiful and attractive:

Sebrights are some of the most beautiful and attractive birds.

And would most definitely add colour to your backyard farm.

4. They Sebright chicken breeds make good pets:

Yes, Sebright chicken can make very good pets when trained well.

5. Sebrights are not aggressive birds:

These little bantam chickens are not bullies.

6. They can get along well with other Chicken breeds:

They have a friendly nature and so get along with other chicken breeds.

7.  They make Great Show birds:

Sebright is mostly developed as an ornamental breed.

They are very good for shows and exhibitions

8. They have large wings and laced feathers:

Their laced plumage and large wings which are bigger than their bodies give them an edge over their small bodies.


What are the Disadvantages of Sebright chicken?

Let’s look at some reasons why the Sebright chicken may not be a good choice for you.

1. Their meat production is very low:

This set of chickens are not good for meat.

Due to the small nature of Sebright chicken, they are not good meat-producing birds.

2. Sebright chickens are high maintenance birds:

Oftentimes the Sebright chicken could be quite difficult to breed.

And because their conversation status is threatened, you may require an extra license to own and keep them in your garden.

3. The Sebright’s egg production status is very low:

They are not prolific egg layers.

If you are looking for a chicken with good egg-laying capacity then Sebright isn’t the one for you.

4. They are not broody:

Sebright hens are rare brooders and do not make very good mothers.

5. Their petite nature makes them prone to predators:

Sebright chickens fall prey easily to predators because of their small size.

They, therefore, require extra protection.

6. They are flighty birds:

This means you’ve got to keep an eye on them because they can take off at any time.

You would also provide confinement that can keep them contained yet spacious.

7. They are not very good foragers:

Sebright chickens are not good at foraging.

So if you are looking for a good forager to cut down the cost of feeding, Sebright won’t be of any help.

8. Sebright chickens are noisy:

Sebright chickens tend to be talkative and noisy.

They tend to imitate the Rhode Island Red Chicken breed.

Very loud birds 

9. The Sebright’s are not healthy birds:

Sebright chickens are prone to Marek’s disease and some also suffer from low fertility.

Apart from this though they are quite healthy chickens and they are not prone to frostbite.

Frequently Asked Questions About Sebright chickens

1. What is the lifespan of Sebright chickens?

Sebright chickens are known to have an average lifespan of about  8 years.

But this depends on the quality of care you provide for them.

They may live longer or shorter than their average lifespan.

2. Are Sebright chickens good for meat?

Oh no! 

Sebright chickens are too little for meat production. 

Therefore, they are not raised for the purpose of mass meat production.

3. Can Sebright chickens be trained as pets?

 Sebright chicken has a very friendly and active nature and can be easily trained as pets. 

Sebrights are quite handy and you will definitely fall for their beautiful appearance.

4. Are  Sebright chickens good egg layers?

Sebright chickens are not really good egg layers

You cannot rely on them to lay a respectable amount of eggs for your household.

This is because they are purely raised as ornamental or show birds

Therefore they can only lay small-sized eggs which are white in colour.

5. How often do Sebright chickens lay eggs?

Not very often, Sebright chickens lay an average of 60 – 80 eggs in a year.

This also depends on other factors such as the age of the chicken, diet and temperatures.

6. What do Sebright chickens eat to grow big?

Naturally, Sebright chickens are not big chickens.

But they need adequate food to grow well.

These chickens require different varieties of food depending on how old they are.

From 0–8 weeks it was advisable to feed the Sebright chicken with a chick starter, this will enable them to grow well at their tender age.

From 8 weeks and above, you can feed them with chicken grains, chicken pellets, chicken mash or grain mix.

You could also spice up their diet by adding fruit and Vegetables, they really enjoy them.

Also, add extra protein to the laying hens to improve the quality of their eggs.

7. How fast do Sebright chickens grow?

Sebright chickens grow at a steady rate not faster than other bantam breeds

8. Are Sebright chickens noisy?

Sebright chickens are noisy birds and can be quite talkative. 

They may not be very ideal for backyard chickens in urban areas.

9. What is the habitat and environment of  Sebright  chickens?

Sebright chickens can efficiently survive in cold climates.

They are not good free rangers and can easily fall prey to predators.

Foraging is not their thing, so they are not known to seek out their own food.

This chicken breed is able to get along well with other Chicken breeds but can be quite troublesome. 

Therefore you will have to keep an eye on them.

Also, they are strong fliers and can be flighty, so you would have to provide the right garden size for them.


This little yet well-formed beautiful bird is the end result of one man’s creative imagination. It can even be referred to as true artwork.

Hence, they are dutifully named after their Creator.

Its physical attributes make it a delightful sight to behold.


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