Every new chicken keeper must decide what breed of chickens is best for their flock. For some people, this means turning to the small but adorable bantam chicken breeds. But what exactly are bantams? How do they differ from ordinary chicken breeds? These are all important questions to ask before you buy your flock’s first bantam chicks. Learn what to expect from a flock of bantams with this list of things to know about bantam chickens.
WHAT ARE BANTAMS?
Before you learn about the characteristics of bantams and how to care for them, it’s important to know where these birds come from and how they came to be popular members of backyard flocks. Bantam chickens are simply smaller chickens. They usually range from about half to two-thirds of the size of a normal chicken. The American Bantam Association recognizes over 400 varieties of bantam chickens. These varieties fall into three main groups. True bantams occur naturally and have no large counterpart. Miniaturized bantams get their smaller size from breeding and other human intervention. Developed bantams are breeds that were originally small and have experienced further human development to make them even smaller.
SUPPLIES AND CARE
For the most part, bantams need the same care as other chickens: a warm, dry coop, food and water, and a safe, comfortable place to explore and play during the day. However, there are still a few specific things to know about bantam chickens. Bantams need about half the space of their larger cousins. They will also eat less feed. In fact, many chicken owners raise all-bantam flocks to save money on resources. On the other hand, bantam owners must take extra care in cold weather, as these smaller birds are less resistant to cold than other chicken breeds. Bantams are also known to be talented flyers. Make sure your bantam chickens always have high perches to rest on in their coop. You should also use overhead netting to keep these flighty chickens secure within their run.
Do you have everything you need to keep your bantam chickens safe, healthy, and happy? Pick up your chicken coop supplies from Stromberg’s Chickens to create the perfect home for every member of your backyard flock.