||This article needs additional citations for verification. (September 2012)|
A Light Brahma hen
|Country of origin||India|
|Chicken (Gallus gallus domesticus)|
Brahmas are an Asiatic breed of chicken that originated from birds exported through the port of Shanghai in China, and were known as "Shanghai" birds. Much confusion exists as to the origination of this breed, since the Cochen, another breed of Asiatic chicken, was also bred from the "Shanghai" bird.
The Brahma was admitted into the American Poultry Association's Standard of Perfection in its very first printing. They were first bred mainly for meat, and are now bred mainly for exhibition and for backyard birding. Some of the earliest imports to the U.S. reached weights of nearly 14 pounds, but the standard weights are now 12 pounds for an adult male and 10 pounds for an adult female. Young birds rarely weigh much at all despite their size, only putting on their full weight till they are nearly two years old.
Brahmas are calm, friendly birds that make good pets or exhibition fowl if handled properly. Males are calm and generally not aggressive towards humans, but possess good instincts for defense of the flock and will often dance for the females. Females are very sweet and docile. They are not skittish or easily scared, making them a popular choice for families with children. Due to their quiet demeanor, Brahmas can be easily trained so that they can be handled by almost anyone.
Early coop training is very important because of their large size as the second largest recognized breed in the American Standards of Perfection, and because the males have strong instincts towards the defense of their flock. They are also very slow growing, and when young, might be at risk for predators if not properly cared for.
Sometimes, however, other species of chickens are rather aggressive towards the female Light Brahmas.
Brahmas are a massive, stately bird, with an upright carriage and large heads. When standing, they should almost appear to form a V, and should stand fairly tall—males more than females. Feet should be strong, with feathers extending all the way down the middle toe, and plumage should be held tighter than what is found in their fellow Asiatic breed, the Cochen.
- Cock - 12 pounds (5.443 kg)
- Cockerel - 10 pounds (4.536 kg)
- Hen - 9 pounds
- Pullet - 8 pounds
Recognized varieties 
The American Standard of Perfection recognizes three Brahma varieties: light, dark, and buff. The light Brahma has a base color of white, with black hackles edged in white and a black tail. The cocks' saddle feathers in a light Brahma are striped with black. The dark Brahma has the most notable difference between cock and hen. The hen has a dark gray and black penciled coloration with the same hackle as the light whereas the cock has black and white hackles and saddle feathers, and a black base and tail. The wings of a dark Brahma are white-shouldered and the primary feathers (remiges) are edged with white. Buff Brahmas have the same pattern of black as light Brahmas, except with a golden buff base color instead of white.
In Australia Brahma Breeders are creating more colours and along with the accepted American varieties - Light, dark, and buff the Australian Poultry Association have accepted black, blue, partridge, crele and even barred varieties of Brahma.
Famous brahmas 
Kukko Pärssinen, also known as Kuk Pärs, Cock Pärs or Cock Bärssö (with some regional variants), was a famous Finnish rooster that defended a pen from a dog attack. Despite he and other three hens died, he repelled the dogs, wounding two of them.
Gallery of varieties 
Buff Brahma bantam
See also 
- The American Livestock Breeds Conservatory. "Brahma Chicken".
- United States. Agricultural Research Service. Animal Husbandry Research Division (1954). Breeds of chickens for meat and egg production. U.S. Dept. of Agriculture. p. 14. Retrieved 25 September 2012.
- United States. Agricultural Research Service. Animal Husbandry Research Division (1954). Breeds of chickens for meat and egg production. U.S. Dept. of Agriculture. pp. 14–15. Retrieved 25 September 2012.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Brahma (chicken)|
- University of Illinois, The Chickscope Project, Detailed information and illustrations on Brahmas
- Brahma page at FeatherSite
- Oklahoma State University, Animal Science Dept. - Brahma Information
- Brahmas at myPetChicken
- Brahmas at Omlet