Unbeknownst to some of us, a steady industry of non-generic chicken has flourished and in the meantime it has produced some peculiar-looking breeds. Some people’s love for these birds goes past abstaining from chicken nuggets and road-crossing jokes. In their honor, let’s take a look at some of these fine feathered friends.
There’s actually a chicken under that fluffy plumage. This breed is calm and friendly and mostly kept as pets throughout the world. It probably originates from China, as the oldest surviving written account comes from Marco Polo, who wrote something about furry chicken during his travels in Asia in the thirteenth century.
The hens make good mothers and they’re regularly used to hatch eggs for other chicken breeds or even different bird species. Their black meat, skin and bones make them a delicacy in Asia.
Modern Game Bantams
A bantam is a chicken that has been bred to be as small as possible. By chicken breeders with a leg fetish.
This particular variety was bred for ornamental purposes following the outlawing of chicken fights in Britain during the nineteenth century. They come in more than a dozen color variations and are curious and friendly towards people and easily tamed. For these reasons they are considered excellent pets.
This pocket chicken originates from Kalantan, Malaysia. The story goes that the King of Thailand gave them as a gift to a local sultan a long time ago. However, the modern serama was first exhibited in 1990 by a man called Wee Yean Een and he named it after Rama, the title of the Kings of Thailand. Here’s one in action:
[su_youtube url=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jT17ZCfxrgY” width=”400″ height=”300″]
Posing fearlessly with their puffed-up breasts, these chicken are loved in their native country because of their resemblance to tiny soldiers. They come in 2.500 different colors and hold the title of smallest chicken in the world.
This one’s a rare French breed that was once famous for its fine meat. It came close to becoming extinct in the 1960’s and 1970’s but has since made a gradual recovery. Nowadays their value is purely ornamental although some fancy French restaurants still serve them. And they look like chicken-sized demons.
This beast stands a full two inches off the ground. They suffer from dwarfism caused by a single dominant instance of a dwarfing gene called “creeper”. While their bodies are about the same size as other species, their short legs give them a stumpy appearance. This old Scottish breed is generally docile but roosters will get feisty sometimes. We all do.
This breed comes from Japan and its name means “Long-tailed Chicken”. The Japanese government even declared it a Special Natural Monument. Their impressive tails sometimes exceed 20 feet (6 meters) in length. It has been tediously bred for hundreds of years and contains some Javanese junglefowl in its paternal ancestry. They have decorated the Imperial Garden of Japan for quite some time which means they’ve been treated like royalty. You can see it in their prideful stance.
This chicken stands out because it’s black. All black. Feathers, beak, tongue, comb, wattles, feet, nails, skin, bones, meat and organs. It decided to go all the way.
Even its blood is remarkably dark. And they cost up to US $2.000. Hmm…