Sebastopol GeeseMarch 22, 2019
The oddest, yet one of the most popular of our geese breeds, is the Sebastopol. It is highly recognizable from their curled feathers. The definitive origins of the Sebastopol are unknown, but it is believed that they originated in southeastern Europe and that the name ‘Sebastopol’ came from the port town of the same name in Russia. Originally they were bred so their feathers could be used as stuffing in bedding but now they are strictly an ornamental breed.
The breed has been closely documented since its first showing in England in the 1860s. Jonathan M. Thompson on the Lifestock Conservancy has collected a variety of news article and journal entries that mention Sebastopol and its effect in the poultry world and social circles.
Interestingly, the Sebastopol is known as Lockengans in German, L’Oie Frisee in French and in ancient Greek the word ‘sebastos’ means venerable, august, or magnificent. The Greek translation fits the Sebastopol perfectly due to its unique and striking feathers. Unlike other geese, the feathers of the Sebastopol’s body are soft and flexible, twisted and curled, and can grow to touch the ground. These special feathers cover the entire body except the neck and head. The plumage is pure white once they become an adult, but can have shades of gray as a juvenile.
Add their good looks to their rarity, and it is no wonder the Sebastopol is a popular goose.