PCGB/DEFRA LIaison Update - 12/04/2017
As the name suggests, this breed has its origins in the hills of Breconshire, Wales. The overall buff colour, unique among British geese, attracted Rhys Llewellyn who is credited with collecting and developing this breed in the late 1920s and working with them, until they were breeding true. The Standard was initially published in “Feathered World” in 1934 and then in the 1954 British Poultry Standards. It is a hardy, active breed.
Buff Back (Saddleback)
This is an attractive goose with a white background overlaid with buff markings on head, part of neck, a saddleback and thigh coverts. Geese of this kind have long been known as “Saddlebacks”. The Saddleback race, in both grey and buff forms, has been bred entirely for utility throughout Europe for many centuries. Formerly regarded as belonging to the race of Pomeranian geese, it has been distinguished from these in having a dual-lobed paunch and orange beak and feet. It is uncertain how the buff back colour was developed, although there are several theories which have not been proven. This breed was Standardized in the U.K. in 1982.
This breed of goose is of the same type and pattern as the Buff Back except that the buff colouring is replaced by grey. Grey and white “pied” geese occur in many parts of Northern Europe including the U.K., where by 1906 these geese had long been known as and esteemed as “Saddlebacks” and it has always been a popular colour pattern. This breed should not be confused with the Pomeranian, as although in appearance they may look similar, the Grey Back is dual-lobed with orange beak and feet.
The Pomeranian gets its name from the former Province of Pomerania, which lay on the southern coast of the Baltic Sea between the estuaries of the Oder and Vistula rivers. This region is now shared between Germany and Poland. The Pomeranian comes in three colour varieties, the Grey Saddleback, Grey, and the White, but in the U.K. the Grey Saddleback is the most common and the Standardized colour. First Standardized in 1997 British Poultry Standards.