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Ayam Bekisar Chicken

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The basics:
The Ayam Bekisar is a first generation cross between a green junglefowl (Gallus varius) and a female domesticated chicken (typically a gamefowl) or red jungle fowl (Gallus gallus). In Indonesia, the term Ayam Bekisar applies specifically to the male offspring of the cross. The female hybrids are almost universally infertile (but not completely so). Many of the male chicks from the crossing are also infertile, but a larger number of males are sexually viable. Sometime in the past these were back-crossed with domestic fowl to produce the Ayam Pelung, the Indonesian Native Long-crower.

The male Ayam Bekisar crosses have been long valued for their crowing abilities. They are very vociferous and have calls that carry long distances. They were prized by the boat cultures of Indonesia who placed them in bamboo cages, tied them to the prows of their canoes and used them to maintain communication with other boats, even in the roughest seas. Though their use has died down, being replaced by the Ayam Pelung, they are still employed in Java and Komodo. In Komodo there is even a feral population of these birds.

They are interesting to chicken geneticists due to the cross with the green junglefowl and it is through these crosses that modern domestic chickens have their white skins. Their appearance depends on the precise cross employed and several variants are seen. This fowl is the mascot of East Java. The hens (which are typically surplus) have a pleasant, gamey, flavor.

Types: Largefowl
Varieties: Color and body type varies
Uses: Long Crowing, Meat
Weight: 4 - 6 lbs
Personality: The Ayman Bekisar is calm and affectionate to their owner, and usually wary of strangers. They are highly territorial of other fowl.
Broody: Yes
Preferred climate: Warm
Handles confinement: Yes
Egg production: Fair (2/week)
Egg color: Usually white
Egg size: Medium

What else you should know:
Ayam Bekisar are traditionally kept in cages, about 1 1/2 times the length and height of the birds. It is these selfsame cages that are attached to the canoes where the birds are used as crowing roosters. Ayam Bekisar are roosting birds and will naturally roost in trees. If keeping them, they need to be supplied with plenty of above-ground roosting perches.

Green Junglefowl and their hybrids are very susceptible to common domestic chicken diseases. Several diseases which, though in domestic fowl, such as chicken herpes virus, marble spleen disease, pseudomonas and mycoplasma are highly contagious and often fatal to green junglefowl descendants. For these reasons it is not advisable to house wild junglefowl (or near descendants) in close proximity to domestic fowl.

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