Association for Promotion of Belgian Poultry Breeds


Large fowl





|Red Ardenner turkey |Ronquières turkey

Red Ardenner turkey

Red Ardenner tom


Origin : The exact origin is unknown but the area were they were first kept was not too large and its center was in the Ardennes. Therefore the Red Ardenner is generally accepted as a Belgian-French or a French-Belgian breed. The oldest tracks of this turkey go back to around 1850. The story that the Red Ardenner is in fact a Ronquières turkey, which adapted itself to the poor circumstances in the Ardennes, is a myth. It is very obvious that they are both different breeds that have very little or nothing in common.

Characteristics : The Red Ardenner is a small and rather slowly growing turkey. Its growth rate, adult weight and fertility are somewhat less than those of the Ronquières turkey. However this breed is very hardened, the hens brood easily and bring up their poults without any problems. Nevertheless this breed is usually kept for its ornamental qualities.

Appearance : The Red Ardenner is a small primitive turkey breed. Adult toms weigh about 8 kg and adult hens only about 4 kg. The color of the plumage should be red like a brick and as even as possible throughout the entire plumage with as less white as possible in the main tail feathers or the flight. In the toms there is often a very fine black edging on each feather. The beak is horn-colored at the tip and bluish black at the base. The eyes are very dark brown or almost black. The shanks and toes are pinkish red.

Varieties : Only self-red.

State : Rare. Is kept in every part of Belgium but the number of breeders seems to decline the last couple of years, especially in the Northern Dutch-speaking part of the country. Moderately spread in France. In Germany they have their ‘Red Turkey’, which is very closely related to the Red Ardenner.