Ayam Cemani is an uncommon and relatively modern breed of chicken from Indonesia. They have a dominant gene that causes hyperpigmentation (Fibromelanosis), making the chicken entirely black; including feathers, beak, and internal organs.
The breed originated from the island of Java, Indonesia and have probably been used for centuries for religious and mystical purpose. The breed was first described by Dutch colonial settlers and first imported to Europe in 1998 by Dutch breeder Jan Steverink. Currently, these breed of chicken are kept in the Netherlands, Germany, Slovakia and the Czech Republic. It is thought that Ayam Cemani may have also been brought to Europe by Dutch seamen.
Their beak and tongue, black comb and wattles; even their meat, bones and organs appear black. The blood of the Ayam Cemani is normally colored. The birds’ black color occurs as a result of excess pigmentation of the tissues, caused by a genetic condition known as fibromelanosis. This gene is also found in some other black fowl breeds. The roosters weigh 2–2.5 kg and the hens from 1.5–2 kg. The hens lay cream-colored eggs with a slight pink tint, although they are poor setters and rarely hatch their own brood. Eggs weigh an average of 45 g.
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