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  • Writer's pictureMollye Miller

Unusual Pet Project: #4 Ayam Cemani Chickens


Wearing a flowing vegan leather dress mimicking feathers and giving full fire vibes, Mia strolled onto her historic farm property to introduce me to her rare chickens, the Ayam Cemani.

This kind of chicken is all black with every aspect of them is black - black heart, black skin, black muscle, black bones.

While it wasn't easy to catch these two chickens for the photoshoot - picture us with her farm hand and his net, the chickens sauntering down to the stream for a wild poultry happy hour - but we did gently catch them (well *they* did...). Mia held the hen close to her chest like a house cat. She stroked its glossy feathers and let it exude its own power.

The Ayam Cemani is a rare chicken breed from Java in Indonesia. The word Ayam means chicken in Indonesian and Cemani either means entirely black, or it comes from a place called Cemani in Java (according to @heritageacresmarket). This chicken is full of mysticism and is prized in Indonesia for its reputedly magical blood (which, full disclosure, is the only normal- colored feature of the bird).

To note, Mia does not name any of her chickens since sometimes they get eaten but foxes and other creatures so it’s best for her not to get too emotionally attached by naming them. But that isn’t to say she is not attached.

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