A rare chicken breed is a group of chickens that exist only in small numbers and are traditionally raised in only specific areas. They often have unique characteristics, so they must be preserved so as not to become extinct. So what about the Silkie chicken, which is distinguished by its unique appearance and characteristics?
Is it considered a rare chicken breed or not? come with us to explore the answer to this question and delve deeper into this cute bird.
Are Silkies A Rare Breed?
No, Currently, we cannot say that Silkie is a rare breed, as it has become more widespread than it was in the past. The silkie chicken breed originated in ancient China and is reported to have originated in other places in Southeast Asia such as India and Java.
It can be accepted that Silkie was rare in the past, but it would also be inaccurate. The Silkie breed was not rare, but existed and was very well known, but it was not widespread in some countries.
This does not mean that it was rare, as the Silkie chicken breed was very popular in ancient China and many East Asian countries. This was shown through Chinese heritage and history.
Silkie chicken formed an important part of Chinese culture, as the Chinese excelled in using it, they used its meat in their delicious meals, and they used to grind Silkie bones to make natural medicinal recipes from its powder. All this was not in vain, as recent studies have proven the great nutritional value of silkie chicken meat and bones.
Global Distribution Of Silkies And Their Current Population
Silkies were first introduced to Europe in the 19th century, then made their way across the Atlantic Ocean through the sea trade to modern America and because of their unique appearance, they quickly became a well-known bird.
Silkie chickens are now being raised in many regions of the world. They are well adapted and very tolerant of heat and cold more than other chicken breeds.
Status Of Silkies In The American Standard Of Perfection
Officially, the Silkie chicken breed was recognized in North America and accepted into the Standard of Perfection in 1874. 
Factors Affecting The Popularity Of Silkies
Silkie chickens are stronger in popularity now than they have been in years, and you often see these gentle birds in the backyard. Silkie chickens have a special place among poultry keepers because they make wonderful pets. They are friendly, fun, docile, and well-adapted. It can’t fly and its small size makes it easy to keep in any available space.
The black meat of Silkie chicken has nutritional properties that make it one of the most beneficial types of chicken meat. Although Silkie has poor egg layers, they are very good at incubating chickens and are one of the most important uses of Silkie chickens. Its soft silky feathers and unique fluffy appearance make it compete strongly in chicken shows, almost all Chicken shows across the United States are not devoid of beautiful Silkie chickens.
All this contributed to the rapid spread of the Silkie chicken and made it one of the most popular poultry breeds in a short period of time.
Challenges Affecting The Breeding Of Silkies
The challenges that are hindering silkies from propagating are divided into 2 parts as follows:
Genetic Issues And Inbreeding
There are no real genetic challenges in the Silkie, but rather they can be considered differences, which can be employed
Positively and turned them into advantages. for example, not laying large amounts of eggs matched by being good mothers and incubators. Its small size makes it suitable as a pet in apartments and narrow backyards as well as making it more amusing for children.
The dark color of its skin and meat, which is the most striking genetic trait in the Silkie breed is produced by the internal and external pigmentation of melanin throughout the chicken body. Even if this is considered strange in some countries. It is used in soup recipes and sauces and is served in the most prestigious restaurants at high prices due to its delicious taste and high nutritional value.
Challenges In Breeding Silkies
The main problem of mating in Silkie chickens is not obtaining suitable quantities for hatching. as Silkie chickens lay eggs at a very low rate, about 2 to 3 weeks. You can overcome this by preparing fertilized eggs early and adding them to the hen’s eggs to get reasonable amounts of chicks from hatching.