Use: The Lamona is an extremely rare dual-purpose chicken. Hens are recorded as laying as many as 268 large, white eggs per year.
History: The story of the Lamona chicken breed begins in the early 20th century with Harry M. Lamon, senior poultryman for the government station in Beltsville, Md. Lamon wanted to create a chicken breed that would produce large, white eggs and sell at top dollar as a table fowl, capable of providing quality meat even after egg production slowed down. This was a desirable quality in a dual-purpose breed, as older layers tended to produce tough meat. Lamon also wanted the chicken breed to have a distinct appearance: white with yellow skin, beak and legs, plus a larger body and red earlobes to help to set the chicken apart from the Leghorn.
After 16 years, in 1921, Lamon introduced a new chicken breed called the Lamona, a crossing of Silver-Gray Dorkings, White Plymouth Rocks and White Leghorns. Because of Lamon’s noteworthy dedication to creating the outstanding breed, Secretary of Agriculture Henry Wallace honored him by approving the recommendation that the breed be named after its originator. The Lamona chicken breed was accepted into the American Poultry Association’s Standard of Perfection in 1933.
Conformation: Very little is known about the current physical appearance of the Lamona chicken breed except that it has a single comb, well-rounded body, red earlobes and four toes. Standard Lamona cocks weigh 8 pounds and hens weigh 6½ pounds. Bantam cocks weigh 34 ounces and hens weigh 30 ounces.
Special Considerations/Notes: The Lamona chicken breed saw a strong decline up until the 1980s, when it was thought to be extinct. However, in 2005 it was discovered that two possible flocks might remain in existence. (The owners of these rare chickens wish to remain anonymous for the time being.) The Lamona chicken is listed in the Study category of the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy’s Conservation Priority List.