At the first poultry show in England in 1845 the Malay Chicken had its classification, and in the first British Book of Standards of 1865 descriptions were included of both the black/red and the white Malay. One of the oldest breeds, the Malay reached this country as early as 1830 and our breeders developed it, particularly in Cornwall and Devon. At the turn of the twentieth century the Malay was the first breed to be bantamized, the bantams proving to be more popular than the large fowl.
They were large in comparison to other bantams, and it is difficult to reduce size further without losing the typical large fowl characteristics. They should follow the large fowl standard in every respect except weight.
Characteristics: Malay Chickens are very tall and appear bold and perhaps cruel due to their projecting eyebrows. They are closely feathered with short feathers and carry their bodies inclined upward with tail low or drooping. They are rugged and have a reputation for vigor and long life. They require exercise to maintain muscle tone and hardness of feather. Most hens will go broody but are not a good choice because their long legs don’t fit easily in a nest.
- Standard Weights: Cock-9 pounds; hen-7 pounds; cockerel-7 pounds; pullet-5 pounds.
- Skin Color: Yellow
- Egg Shell Color: Brown
- Use: Exhibition fowl.
- Origin: Asia
Interested in raising chickens, but not sure which breed might be right for you?
Things to consider:
Geography: Consider geography when selecting a breed. In cooler areas of the country, consider raising heavier birds. In hotter areas, consider lighter weight birds. Some birds have been specially breed for cold climates. Consider these birds if you live in a cold-climate area.
Space: Where will you be raising these chickens? Do you have a lot of farm land for the animals to be raised on, or are you planning to raise them in your backyard? If you have a small space in which to raise the birds, choose breeds with a calmer temperament and avoid birds that are listed as active. Active birds will not be happy in close confinement.
Temperament: When choosing a breed, consider temperament. Some breeds are calmer than others. If raising chickens in a backyard or in the city, you may prefer a calmer breed.