Rarest Chicken Breeds

Discover the World’s Rarest Chicken Breeds: Unveiling Unique Feathered Gems in Poultry

There are many chicken breeds in the world, but what is the rarest? The rarest chicken breeds are the ones that only exist in small numbers. The rarity of a chicken breed is a bit subjective because not always an uncommon breed is rare. So, we should stick to a more objective perspective and trust the numbers. According to the Livestock Conservancy, the rare chicken breed has an estimated global population of fewer than 1000 birds.

If you love poultry and like to preserve some of the rarest chicken breeds, the best thing to do is start raising one. To help you find the rarest chicken breed that is exceptional and suitable for you and your requirements, we have created a list of the rarest chicken breeds. Read on, and find the rarest chicken breed that fits your sensibility, backyard, or farm. Learn more about their country of origin, use, temperament, egg-laying ability, and other characteristics. The more you know, the better they will thrive under your care!

8 Rarest Chicken Breeds

Since you are reading this article, you are probably interested in adding some of the rarest chicken breeds to your flock. Taking care of rare chicken breeds is a great way to help preserve some of the most fantastic chickens. Like the other chicken breeds, the rarest ones have different features that complement their uniqueness. Learn everything you need on each rare breed and raise awareness of the importance of the preservation process. Here is our list of the rarest chicken breeds and find one or more you would like to preserve and raise:

1.    Ayam Cemani

Rarest Chicken Breeds - Ayam Cemani
Credit: @criatoriosantafelicidaderj
  • Country of origin: Indonesia
  • Temperament: Docile and beginner friendly
  • Lifespan: 6 to 8 years
  • Weight: Male (4.5-6.5lbs)/ Female (3.5-4.5lbs)
  • Size: Medium size
  • Color: Completely black
  • Egg-laying ability: Fairly poor (around 80 cream eggs per year)

It is believed that this unusual all-black chicken breed has magical, mystic, and healing powers. If you are interested in one of the rarest chicken breeds, you should be familiar with its characteristics:

  • The Ayam Cemani breed is known for its extremely black coloration inside and out (feathers, skin, wattles, comb, eyes, meat, and bones) comes from a genetic trade known as fibromelanosis (an abnormal accumulation of melanin);
  • Because of their striking all-black appearance, they have ornamental quality;
  • They are not recognized by the American Poultry Association (APA);
  • Ayam Cemani chickens are intelligent, gentle, flighty, winter hardy, heat tolerant, and low maintenance fowl;
  • On average they lay 1 egg per week, and have an extended off-laying period that can last up to 6 months;
  • They are healthy and robust and don’t have any specific chicken diseases;
  • Ayam Cemani chickens are expensive due to the rarity of the breed.

The Ayam Cemani is one of the rarest and oldest chicken breeds. Even so, they have captured the hearts of many in recent years. If you decide to add this breed to your coop you will become a proud owner and preserver of a rare and eye-catching chicken breed with black feathers and stunning beetle-green iridescence in sunlight.

2.    Campine

Rarest Chicken Breeds - Campine
Credit: @happy.huhn
  • Country of origin: Belgium
  • Temperament: Active, inquisitive, and beginner friendly
  • Lifespan: 7+ years
  • Weight: Male (6lbs)/ Female (4lbs)
  • Size: Medium size
  • Color: Silver, gold
  • Egg-laying ability: around 150-200 white eggs per year

Campine as one of the rarest chicken breeds was approved by the APA in 1914. This Belgium chicken breed is mostly valued for its exceptional beauty and large white eggs. Check out the following features of this lovely and rare Northern European fowl before you take it under your protection:

  • Campine chicken has a beautiful crown-like single comb;
  • Only two color varieties of the Campine breed are recognized (gold and silver) while there are others like the Chamois Campines (toasty marshmallow) have not yet been standardized;
  • They are intelligent, active, curious, and always on alert so predators have a hard time catching them;
  • The Campine breed may not be as friendly as other chicken breeds, but some treats and spending more time with them may do the trick!
  • The Campine hens are good egg-layers, but not good setters due to their active nature;
  • They are a healthy breed that is easy to handle;
  • Campine chicken tolerate cold well, just make sure to provide enough heat during winter, so they don’t get frostbites;
  • They love large spacious land so they can roam and run about.

Once you take the Campine chickens under your care you will have the privilege of raising one of the rarest treasures of the poultry world.

3.    Breda Fowl

Rarest Chicken Breeds - Breda Fowl
Credit: @sigafoosfarm
  • Country of origin: The Netherlands
  • Temperament: Calm, docile, and kids’ friendly
  • Lifespan: 5 to 10 years
  • Weight: Male (6.5lbs)/ Female (5lbs)
  • Size: Medium size
  • Color: Black, blue, white, cuckoo, mottled
  • Egg-laying ability: around 180 white eggs per year

Breda fowl is one of the rarest chicken breeds that are not usually seen outside the Netherlands. In recent years it has even reached an endangered status. So, if you want to increase their number you should consider taking the Breda fowl breed under your care. To do so, you should know the following information:

  • Breda fowl has unique features like no comb flesh at all (just a flat patch of red skin), large nostrils, curved beak, and feathered feet;
  • They are a dual-purpose breed raised for their eggs and meat;
  • The Breda fowl is a wonderful, calm breed that gets along just fine with other gentle breeds;
  • They are a bit delicate, and while growing they need a clean yard, food, and water sources, as well as proper biosecurity measures on the farm;
  • This is a robust and cold-hardy chicken breed, well used to moderate climates;
  • Breda fowl chickens are great foragers and an excellent choice if you want to breed free-range chickens;
  • Due to their rarest chicken breed status, they are a hard breed to come by for small-scale farming.

Generally speaking, this rare chicken breed is a great choice for egg production and meat purposes. What’s even more important they do well with other animals and they are great kids-friendly companions.

4.    La Flèche

Rarest Chicken Breeds - La Flèche
Credit: @eandefarm
  • Country of origin: France
  • Temperament: Active
  • Lifespan: 5 to 8 years
  • Weight: Male (8lbs)/ Female (6.5lbs)
  • Size: Medium to large
  • Color: Black
  • Egg-laying ability: Between 140 and 220 large white eggs per year

La Flèche is one of the rarest chicken breeds with peculiar pseudonyms like the “satan’s fowl” and the “devil bird”. Their nickname comes from their distinct horns like a v-shaped red comb with no crest. This chicken breed of French origin also has the following features:

  • La Flèche chicken is a dual-purpose chicken breed bird with black plumage, full, well-curved tail, a medium-length, black to grey beak, dazzling red eyes, face and wattles, big nostrils, white earlobes, and a spiky looking v-shaped comb;
  • La Flèche is recognized by the APA in 1874 with only one variety (black);
  • La Flèche hens are good egg layers, but are considered to be poor mothers;
  • It has great table quality, due to its thin white skin with tender, juicy, delicate meat underneath;
  • This breed is not a first choice for a pet chicken because they are flighty (invest in tall fences) and often avoid people;
  • La Flèche love to free-range, but also accept confinement if they have plenty of room to explore;
  • This breed prefers warm weather (lots of water for hydration) and doesn’t like cold climates (protect them fromfrostbite);
  • La Fleche chickens are healthy and are not prone to any specific illnesses, just the usual health concerns all chickens face.

If you have the conditions and chance to take care of the La Flèche breed, you will have the most rewarding experience of taking care of one of the rarest chicken breeds out there. Just make sure to give them the proper love and care they deserve!

5.    Sultan

Rarest Chicken Breeds - Sultan
Credit: @thefreckledrose
  • Country of origin: Turkey
  • Temperament: Calm, docile, and friendly
  • Lifespan: 5 to 7 years
  • Weight: Male (6lbs)/ Female (4lbs)
  • Size: Medium
  • Color: White
  • Egg-laying ability: Around 50 large white eggs per year

The Sultan chicken breed is one of the rarest chicken breeds since its arrival in England in 1854. Raised for ornamental purposes this breed is an excellent choice for an urban setting. Besides its unique looks with feathers on all parts of the body, the Sultan breed is also known for the following characteristics:

  • Sultan chickens have pure white color, a V-shaped comb, crest, beard, muffs, big nostrils, white or light flesh-colored beak, reddish-bay eyes, wings held low, feathered slate blue shanks and toes, and five toes on each foot;
  • Besides the officially recognized white color Sultan chickens can be found in black and blue;
  • The Sultan hens are poor egg layers producing only 1 egg per week, and there is nothing much you can do to increase their egg production;
  • Sultans are a friendly and calm chicken breed and a great choice for pets and backyard ornaments;
  • They need appropriate housing, a grassy area for running around, and a high fence to keep them inside because they are great fliers;
  • As one of the rarest chicken breeds Sultans are rarely seen on a restaurant’s menu;
  • They don’t like the cold and are prone to frostbite during winter.

If you decide to enrich your chicken coop with this rare chicken breed of Turkish origin, you need to protect them from predators. Once you start taking care of the Sultans you will have the chance to preserve these wonderful pets and yard ornaments. If you take into consideration their friendly personality, and minimal health issues the Sultan chicken breed could be an exquisite addition to your flock.

6.    Serama

Rarest Chicken Breeds - Serama
Credit: @lost_little_farm
  • Country of origin: Malaysia
  • Temperament: Gentle and very friendly
  • Lifespan: 7+ years
  • Weight: Male (0.55-1.1lbs)/ Female (0.55-1.1lbs)
  • Size: Small
  • Color: Black, blue, white, chocolate, orange
  • Egg-laying ability: Around 180-200 cream or brown color eggs per year

Serama is one of the smallest and rarest chicken breeds in the world. Even though the breed is small it has a big personality, and despite its feisty appearance, it’s sweet and friendly. These tiny chickens have many other interesting features you should know about:

  • The Serama has a small head, single comb, bay red eyes, red wattles, white and red earlobes, upright posture, muscular long legs, four toes on each foot, full and proud breasts, and shoulders set high;
  • They are good egg-layers and mothers (peak fertility from November to February), but some have fertility issues and are difficult to hatch;
  • Serama chickens tolerate well hot and cold temperatures, but it is best to keep them inside when the temperatures are very low;
  • They accept confinement, but they love to forage (wet and muddy environment is not suitable for them);
  • They have been recently accepted by the APA (white and black variety);
  • The Serama comes in 4 accepted sizes: micro, A, B, and C class;
  • They make great pets due to their calm and docile nature;
  • The Serama is a healthy chicken breed with no illness connected to the breed, they just tend to molt continuously.

The Serama chicken breed is just perfect if you are looking for a small, lovable chicken that fits into a rather small space. Help their preservation by making a home for them inside or outside your house, to keep them safe and dry!

7.    Swedish Flower Hen

Rarest Chicken Breeds - Swedish Flower Hen
Credit: @gemma_is_in_the_garden
  • Country of origin: Sweden
  • Temperament: Calm and gentle
  • Lifespan: 5 to 10 years
  • Weight: Male (8lbs)/ Female (5.5lbs)
  • Size: Medium size
  • Color: Black, blue, orange, red, and brown
  • Egg-laying ability: Around 150-200 large to extra-large light beige eggs per year

The Swedish Flower Hen is another dual-purpose breed on our list of the rarest chicken breeds with great egg-laying abilities. If you want to add this breed to your existing chicken coop you should be aware of the following characteristics:

  • The Swedish Flower Hen has orange or yellow eyes, white tipped feathers, yellow or black skin, pink or grey earlobes, red wattles and earlobes, and a red comb;
  • They learn quickly, enjoy foraging and being independent, but also tolerate confinement;
  • The Swedish Hen is friendly towards their keepers, but their crow is loud and can bother your neighbors;
  • They are hardy and adapt well to different temperatures;
  • This chicken breed is super healthy, just be on the lookout for parasites;
  • They haven’t been recognized by the APA, and are regarded as a landrace breed (a result of natural breeding and selection);
  • They need a high-quality dietwith all the important nutrients and proteins;
  • Swedish Flower Hens need at least four square feet of space (or if possible even more) within the coop.

If you become a keeper of the rare Swedish Flower Hen you will help in the preservation of a non-aggressive, friendly, social, and suitable chicken breed for children. This breed is a first-rate choice for beginners due to its problem-free and independent nature.

8.    Orust

Rarest Chicken Breeds - Orust
Credit: @cedarcrestfarm
  • Country of origin: Sweden
  • Temperament: Nervous and alert
  • Lifespan: 6 to 8 years
  • Weight: Male (4.5lbs)/ Female (3.5lbs)
  • Size: Small to medium size
  • Color: Streaked black and white
  • Egg-laying ability: Around 150 medium white eggs per year

Besides being one of the rarest chicken breeds the Swedish Orust is one of the nearly threatened breeds coming from the distant Islands of Orust and Tjörn. The Orust was a known breed to the fishermen on these islands, but unknown on the mainland of Sweden. If you manage to find this extremely rare breed, make sure you are familiar with their fascinating features:

  • The neck and tail of the Orust have gold and metallic tones, the claws have gray and dark black marks, and the plumage has a black and white pattern;
  • Orust roosters have more striking coloration than hens, and their wattles turn from red to purple when angry;
  • Orust chickens are kind, confident, intelligent, and great around kids;
  • They are prolific foragers that love to roam free and don’t tolerate confinement well;
  • Orust chickens need at least 3 – 4 square feet of space in their coop;
  • Orust chicken need and obtain their protein and calcium-rich diet while roaming freely;
  • They like mild temperatures, something between warm and cold, so if the weather is too cold you will need heaters in the coop;
  • Orust hens are average egg layers, so if you are raising chicken for egg production you should choose another breed.

If you want to raise one of the rarest chicken breeds, then the Swedish Orust is a perfect choice. You will have a rare breed with a striking color in your coop that needs very little care.


There are many rare chicken breeds out there. With our list of the rarest chicken breeds, we just scratched the surface of some of the rarest ones out there. As you can see, they have different features that make them even more unique. Use this information to provide a home to a rare chicken breed that meets your criteria. Don’t forget by taking care of one of the rarest chicken breeds you are contributing to their preservation and survival.

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