Chicken Expressed Sequence Tags (ESTs) were analyzed to identify genes associated with myogenesis during embryonic development. A total of 6,184 ESTs were generated from three cDNA libraries constructed from whole embryos (Stage 26), somites associated with neural tube (Stage 15), and limb buds (Stages 21, 24 and 26). Clustering and assembly of 4,998 valid ESTs resulted in 2,329 unique sequences with 902 clusters (38.7%) and 1,427 singletons (61.3%). There are more than 400,000 chicken ESTs available at GenBank and we were able to identify 143 novel sequences. From these, 45 sequences found either a human EST homolog or a match with conserved regions among proteins. Most of these sequences were found to be expressed in somites, an important tissue for muscle development and not characterized before. This study revealed the value of micro dissected embryonic libraries for describing gene expression profiles associated with myogenesis and gene discovery.