I love these birds and have from the first time I laid
eyes on them. Originally from the jungles of Sumatra, these birds
are stunning when standing in full sunlight. Their feathering shines
iridescence that just makes them glow. The older cocks sport LONG tail feathers that are beaten only
by a Phoenix or Yokohama cock in length! One of the few cocks that are supposed to have multiple spurs to qualify as "show quality". VERY able to fend for themselves if necessary.
This picture shows a couple of my "free range" cocks sparring
for dominancy in the yard. A close relative of the fighting game..these
birds will put on a short, but spectacular show. Unlike their feisty
cousins, however, Sumatras USUALLY lack the "fight til death" instinct
that cock fighters desire in their birds. They'll lose a few feathers
and maybe bloody one another's combs or gills and it's over. Note
their neck hackles... Now you know where the saying.."don't get your
hackles up" came from!
Believe it or not.. Black Sumatra chicks DON'T start out
BLACK. This baffled me the first time I ever acquired a start these
birds. I ordered some "day olds" from a hatchery and THIS is what
arrived a few days later. I just KNEW that I had been sent the wrong chicks.
All an angry phone call to the hatchery got me.. was a laughing hatchery
manager on the other end of the line and a red face for my trouble.
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