The New American Serama

Parent Category: General Category: SCNA Articles

By: Sam Traten, PA, USA

New does not always mean better, but it always creates opportunity. We would like you to know about a relatively new chicken that has caused excitement at the last few Ohio Nationals.

It's the American Serama, and here is what sets it apart and makes it special to a growing group of enthusiasts and some serious breeders:

1. Seramas are the world's smallest chicken. Ranging in weight between 9 and 19 ounces, imagine a full grown rooster the size of a pigeon -- that's a Serama!

2. Seramas have a tame and gentle disposition, ranking with the calmest of any of the breeds known, standard or bantam. Both hens and roosters are open to handling. Even children can readily pet and hold the great majority of Seramas. This is considered by many owners as a more important feature than the small size.

3. Most importantly, with their erect carriage and engaging "toy soldier" strut, along with a striking range of color, the Serama cannot be confused with any other chicken, large or small. It is no wonder that those of us who have seen one, want one.

For those with very little space, or with close neighbors, Seramas may be the only option for people who would like chickens as pets but have not been able to consider them before. In Malaysia, where the Serama originates, it is the number one household pet. More Seramas than cats and dogs combined. Showing Seramas there is a major pastime, with local and national competitions numbering in the hundreds annually, if not thousands.

Existing as a landrace in Malaysia, with origins sketchy and not fully known to this day, a number (135) were imported to the US in 2001, by Jerry Schexnayder of Louisiana and were introduced to the American Public via the Ohio National, Columbus, a show in Lincoln, Nebraska and another venue in Tucson, Arizona, that same year. In 2003 the first ever Serama Show in the US, was held in conjunction with the Ohio National. The following spring a Serama Only Show, the Cajun Classic was held in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

One of the first importers, Jerry Schexnayder, along with Brian Reeder, KY founded a national organization called Serama Council of North America (SCNA) and went on to develop a breed that the organization refers to as the American Serama, to conform to a type standard developed from several type of serama as shown in Malaysia. SCNA is currently working for acceptance as a true breed in the APA and has already been accepted by the ABA, with many breeders concentrating on a pure white bird. This is so there is a single focal point for entry, with a bird that comes in literally thousands of color variations and feather patterns.

The SCNA has gone on to sponsor and support sister organizations in the Netherlands (The Netherlands Serama Club, NSC), and in the UK (UK Serama Club, UKSC).

The SCNA sponsors a forum which serves over 200 members. While the complete member areas are open to registered dues paid members only, other areas are open to the general public.

The SCNA forums is a must for anyone seeking information on the Serama. The group is varied in background and you will find wide and stimulating conversations. The SCNA also sponsors a website,, which is open to everyone.

SCNA offers three membership levels: Family-$20, Individual-$15, Youth (17 and under)-FREE. It's simple to join on line at: or mail in your application for membership to SCNA, P.O. Box 159, Vacherie, La. 70090.

Membership is welcomed and encouraged.