The world's smallest chicken breed will make its Tri-City debut March 30 as part of the Leftovers 4-H Club's annual poultry show at the Benton County Fairgrounds in Kennewick.
The Serama chicken is the tiniest and lightest bantam chicken on the planet, fitting comfortably in the palm of a human hand, said Grace Trumbo, vice president of the club.
"These fine-feathered friends are not much harder to care for than regular poultry. Some are even brought inside and cared for as house pets," 15-year-old Grace said. "This is the first time we've ever had the Serama chicken at our show."
The show is also the first time the American Poultry Association has held a sanctioned show in the Tri-Cities, Grace added.
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The show starts at 9 a.m. with daylong festivities to include workshops and exhibitions of various breeds of fowl. There is no admission fee, and the event also includes auction items.
Grace said Serama chickens are becoming popular family pets because they are easy to raise and quiet and can make an elegant addition to family backyards.
The Serama chicken originated in Malaysia about 50 years ago and is believed to be a cross between Japanese and Malaysian bantam chickens, according to backyardchickens.com. The site says Seramas are bred for their temperament and enjoy human attention, much like dogs.
The only drawback to owning a Serama chicken is they don't tolerate cold weather well and need insulated protection during the winter in cold climates like the Tri-Cities. Their feed requirements are no different than other egg-laying chickens, except they don't eat as much.
Grace said there are more than 2,000 different color variations for Serama chickens, so it's not uncommon to hatch as many different-colored chicks as there are eggs.
Because the Seramas are new the show this year, the event is being called The Wild West Serama Round-Up.
"The Leftovers 4-H Club is playing host to this show with high-quality show birds, both chicks and adult birds, as well as many informational workshops and competitions," Grace said. "Prepare to be blown away by these incredible (Serama) birds."
The Seramas are being supplied by Jerry Schexnayder, from Louisiana, who raises the birds on his property near New Orleans.
For more information about the show, call 582-6436 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.