Silkie Bantam

Varieties:

Origin: China, found there by Marco Polo in 1298.

 American Status: Ranks in first 15 breeds in popularity.

 The Silkie bantam is the only breed of bantams with black pigmented skin. The feathers are without the usual forms of webs, that is, there is a lack of adhesion of the barbs to one another which gives the appearance of down or silky hair, hence the name silken or Silkie. Another distinguishing feature is turquoise blue ear lobes.

 Shape of male

 Comb: Walnut -- set firmly and evenly on head, almost circular in shape, preferably broader than longer, with a number of small prominences over it, a slight indentation or furrow, transversely across the middle, rising at a point just forward of the nostrils and extending backwards to a point parallel with front of eyes.

 Crest: Medium size, soft and full, as upright as the comb will permit having a few silky feathers streaming gracefully backwards from lower and back part of crest.

 Beak: Short, broad at base, well curved.

 Face: Fine in texture, free from wrinkles or folds. Eyes: Large, bright, prominent.

 Wattles: Non-Bearded -- medium size, concave, nearly round, fine in texture, free from wrinkles or folds. Bearded -- very small, almost concealed by beard.

 Ear Lobes: Non-bearded -- small, oval, fine in texture, free from wrinkles or folds. Bearded -- very small, almost entirely concealed by muffs.

 Head: Small, short, carried so that a line drawn parallel with the tip of the tail will bisect the comb.

 Beard & Muffs: Bearded Varieties -- composed of feathers turned horizontally backwards, from both sides of the beak, from the center, vertically downwards, the whole forming a collar of three ovals in a triangular group, giving a muffed effect.

 Neck: Short, full, well proportioned, gracefully arched.

 Hackle: Abundant, flowing well down over back and shoulders.

 Back: Short, broad from shoulders to saddle, quite rounded its entire length, the whole forming a U-shaped curve from neck to tail.

 Saddle: Rising from back at base of cape, very broad and round, plumage profuse and long, lower saddle feathers flowing over tips of wings and mingling with fluff.

 Tail: Main Tail -- short, very shredded at ends, well spread at base, filled underneath with an abundance of soft feathers which are overlapped by converts and lesser sickles, the whole forming a duplex curve with back and saddle. Sickles, lesser sickles and converts -- abundant, soft, well curved, without hard quills, concealing main tail feathers.

 Wings: Medium size, closely folded, carried well back and nearly horizontal, well above lower thighs, ending short of stern. Shoulder & Fronts -- concealed by hackle and breast feathers. Bows and coverts -- very well rounded. Primaries -- medium length, well shredded, concealed by secondaries. Secondaries -- medium length, well shredded, tapering convexly to stern, tips concealed by saddle feathers.

 Breast: Carried well forward, extremely full, well rounded, great breadth and depth.

 Body and Stern: Body -- medium length, broad, deep, well rounded from breast to abdomen and tail, depending more on fullness or fluffiness and length of feather than on muscular development. Stern -- very full, soft and silky feathering.

 Legs and Toes: Legs -- short, stout, set well apart, straight when seen from front. Lower Thighs -- short, stout at top, tapering to hocks, abundantly feathered. Hocks -- covered with soft and silky feathers curving inwards about the hocks. Shanks -- rather short, stout in bone, well feathered on outer sides with silky plumage, the upper part growing out from under thigh plumage and continuing into foot feathering. Spurs -- medium size and length, set just above the fifth toe. Toes -- five, the three front straight, well and evenly spread; the hind toe double, the normal toe in natural position and the extra toe placed above, starting from close to the other toe, but well formed, longer than the other toes and turning upwards and backwards; the outer and middle toes well feathered.

 Appearance: Active, bold, silky and fluffy.

 Shape of female

 Comb: Walnut -- very small, well formed, set firmly and evenly on head, almost circular in shape, preferably broader than long, with a number of small prominences over it, a slight indentation or furrow, transversely across the middle, rising at a point just forward of the nostrils and extending backwards to a point parallel with the front of the eyes.

 Crest: Medium size, soft and full, compact, globular and well balanced.

 Beak: Short, broad at base, well curved.

 Face: Fine in texture, free from wrinkles or folds. Eyes: Large, bright, prominent.

 Wattles: Non-Bearded -- small, concave, forming a half circle, fine texture, free from wrinkles or folds. Bearded -- very small to non-existent, almost concealed by beard.

 Ear Lobes: Non-bearded --very small, oval, fine in texture, free from wrinkles or folds. Bearded -- very small, almost entirely concealed by muffs.

 Head: Small, short, carried so that a line drawn parallel with the tip of the tail will be beneath the wattles.

 Beard, Muffs, Neck and Hackle: Same as male.

 Back: Short, broad from shoulders to cushion, quite rounded its entire length, the whole forming a U-shaped curve from neck to tail.

 Cushion: Rising from back at base of cape, very broad and round; plumage, abundant.

 Tail: Main Tail -- short, very shredded at ends, well spread at base, filled underneath with an abundance of soft feathers which are overlapped by cushion and converts, the whole forming a duplex curve with back and cushion.

 Wings, Breast, Body and Stern: Same as male. Legs and Toes: Same as male except no spur.

 Appearance: Active, sedate, silky and fluffy.

Content:

AMERICAN SILKIE BANTAM CLUB
Valerie Hirvela, Secretary/Treasurer
6230 Virginia Lane
Seffner, Florida
United States 33584
email: vhirvela@tampabay.rr.com


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Updated May 21, 1998