Abstract Chickens were susceptible to infection with three different stocks of the subgenus Trypanozoon: two of presumptive Trypanosoma b. brucei and one of T. b. rhodesiense. Two groups of chickens were used: the first hatched following inoculation with either T. b. brucei or T. b. rhodesiense during embryonic development, and the second were infected as adult birds. In both experimental groups, parasitaemia persisted for prolonged periods, but was mostly subpatent and detectable only by subinoculation of blood into mice. In chickens infected as embryos, parasitaemias were patent for five weeks after hatching, but subpatent thereafter (to weeks 13 to 17). Quantitative estimations of the parasitaemias of seven of the birds hatched from embryos inoculated with T. b. brucei revealed fluctuations in the number of circulating trypanosomes, with an initial peak between days 2 to 9 after hatching. Between weeks 13 to 17 after hatching the chickens appeared to have recovered spontaneously from the trypanosome infections. Homologous challenge at week 20 failed to produce a recrudescence of parasitaemia, indicative of a possible acquired immunity. The infections of ten chickens inoculated with either T. b. brucei or T. b. rhodesiense as adult birds were microscopically subpatent throughout the observation period of six weeks, but subinoculation of blood into mice showed the chickens were parasitaemic from week one and thereafter. Different aspects of infection of avian hosts by the Trypanozoon subspecies are discussed.