Coq Noir I, 48×48

Oil on Canvas / Le Coq Noir or Black Rooster or Ayam Cemani takes it name from AYAM which means chicken in Indonesian and CEMANI which is the name of the village in the island of Java where they are said to have originated from. The birds are completely black – black plumage with a greenish shine, black legs and toe nails, black beak and tongue, black comb and wattles; even their meat, bones and organs appear black. The Ayam Cemani’s dark color tissues originate in a genetic condition known as fibromelanosis.

These birds have been used in Indonesia for centuries for religious and mystic purposes and some Indonesians aborigines believe that the Ayam Cemani’s tissues have miraculous healing power.

The roosters weigh 2–2.5 kg (4.4 to 5.5 lbs) and the hens from 1.5–2 kg (3.3 to 4.4 lbs). The hens lay cream colored eggs with a slight pink tint, although they rarely hatch their own brood.

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