New Delhi: Ayam Cemeni, a rare breed of chicken, notorious for its highly pigmented black body, is mostly found in Indonesia. It’s unusually black goth look is the result of excess pigmentation of the tissues, which is caused by a genetic condition known as fibromelanosis.
At the first look, one would assume it to be a really gothic fantasy, playing mind games with your thoughts, but is actually isn’t. This chicken is a regular poultry with a very unique appearance.
The bird has been described by National Geographic as the ‘most deeply pigmented creature’ found in nature. But not everything about the Ayam Cemani chicken is black, as the hens lay cream-coloured eggs.
They are suspected to have come from the island of Java. They were imported to Europe in 1998 by Dutch breeder Jan Steverink.
Interestingly, they aren’t the only chicken breed that has black insides. Sweden’s Bohuslän-Dals svarthöna, Vietnam’s Black H’Mong, and the Silkie have similar features.
According to Swedish geneticist Leif Andersson, all the fore aforementioned species have the same ‘complex rearrangement in the genome’ that can be traced to a single ancient chicken.
The Ayam Cemani chicken has been called by different nicknames since they were first spotted. According to the Smithsonian, they are called ‘world’s most bewitching chicken’, the ‘Lamborghini of poultry’, and the ‘Goth chicken’.