These Upright Birds are the Smallest Chickens in the World

The Serama is the smallest chicken breed in the world.  Seramas have a full breast, a human-like upright posture, and their wings lie straight up and down instead of sideways.  The origin of their name isn’t clear with some sources attributing it to Sri Rama, the mythological Hindu king and others to “Rama” – a term referring to Thailand’s royalty.

These small chickens originated in Malaysia and are the result of a cross between Japanese and Malaysian bantams.  These birds are prized for their small stature as well as for their proud strutting.

A Serama Rooster, Malaysia. Photo: Amani Hasan, 2008.

A Serama Rooster, Malaysia. Photo: Amani Hasan, 2008, CC BY 4.0.

Serama chickens are the smallest and lightest breed of chickens in the world.  Most weight under 17.5 ounces (500g) and stand around six inches tall.

The perspective of an adult hand against a Serama chicken shows how small they are. Photo: Anonymous.

The perspective of an adult hand against a Serama chicken shows how small they are. Photo: Anonymous.

These tiny chickens nearly went extinct in their native Malaysia after culling efforts by the government in response to the Asia’s bird flu outbreak of 2004.  The bird population has since rebounded, with estimates of around 250,000 of this type of chicken in Malaysia alone.  Seramas are now bred around the world with breeding clubs located across Europe and North America.

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