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Ayam Pelung Chicken

Other name(s):
 Pelung Long Crower

Scientific name: Gallus gallus domesticus

Country / Place of origin: Indonesia

History: The Ayam Pelung, or Pelung Chicken arose from back-crosses of Ayam Bekisar (itself a cross of Gallus varius x Gallus gallus) with domesticated gamefowl. The roosters in each generation were selected for their crowing abilities and the Ayam Pelung is now a very large chicken breed known for its most melodious song. Indeed, locally, they are known as the 'singing chickens'. In many regions of Indonesia the Ayam Pelung has replaced the traditional Ayam Bekisar as the crowing bird of choice both for homes and for use on fishing canoes (and not boats).

Originally these birds were used as a kind of early 'foghorn', for the males would crow to one another and would allow the fishing boats that used them to keep in touch even in heavy swells. Unlike the Ayam Pelung, which is a mostly sterile cross, the Ayam Pelung represents a stable breed then reproduces truly.

These are very large birds, with the males standing up to 50cm tall. According to local legend, the first Ayam Pelung chick was discovered in 1850 in the province of Cianjur, Java by a local chicken hobbyist, H. Djarkasih. He raised the chick and it matured quickly. When full grown it issued forth a long and melodious crow. This bird was named Ayam Pelung (Crowing Chicken) and the breed was born. Today there is an annual crowing contest in Cianjur and people bring their birds from all over Indonesia to take part. Prizewinning birds sell for hundreds of dollars.


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