Silkie is a breed of chicken, which is known for their fluffy plumage that feels like silk. This is not the only unusual feature of the breed; the others include black colored bones and skin, ear lobes of blue color along with feet having five toes on each. They come in various colors and are often parts of various poultry shows. They are not aggressive like other poultry animals. They are calm and docile with a friendly temperament. These birds are often used to breed other species as well.
The origins of these hens are unknown. However, the first documentation of them was found in China. It is therefore, they are also known by the name of ‘Chinese Silk Chicken’. Other possible origins of the Silkie chicken can be other South East Asian countries. They have been transported to other area in the western world via the Silk Route. The silkies are comparatively smaller from those of its other poultry counterparts. The males of the species weigh only 1.8 kg whereas the females have a weight of 1.36 kg.
There are two varieties of the silkies: the bearded and the non-bearded. The only difference between them is that the bearded ones have some extra tufts of feathers, which are inside the beak areas covering the earlobes. They have this soft, fluffy appearance since their feathers do not have any barbicels, and they are not able to fly. They are often confused with the bantam breed of South East Asia, which obviously they are not.