Fowls (chickens) with black feathers, bones and flesh

Darwin (1897, 259) states:  “In the Chinese encyclopedia  published in 1596, but compiled from various sources, some of high antiquity, seven breeds are mentioned, including what we should now call Jumpers or Creepers, and likewise fowls with black feathers, bones and flesh.”

Apparently this chicken is called “Ayam Cemani.”

I thought melanocytes (skin pigment cells) were limited to the epidermis.  I did not know that they could be in the muscle and bone tissue too.  Looks like I learned something new!

List of chicken breeds


Darwin, Charles.  The variation of animals and plants under domestication, Volume I.  New York:  D. Appleton and Company, 1897.

Science-Related Resources:

Darrell Barnes Science and Nature YouTube Channel




  1. Very Interesting! I didn’t know that the pigment goes into the muscle. Keeping Chickens are so on trend here!
    Thanks for the info!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s