- Breed Purpose:
- Climate Tolerance:
- All Climates
- Egg Productivity:
- Egg Size:
- Egg Color:
- Breed Temperament:
- Bears confinement well,Noisy,Calm
- Breed Colors/Varieties:
- There are several recognized colors of the Japanese Bantam, such as Black, Black or Blue Tailed white, White, Blue, Black Tailed Buff, Buff Columbian, Birchen or Grey, Cuckoo. Frizzles of any color, Mottleds (Black, Blue),Brown/reds, Black/red, Wheatan, Partridge, Duckwing Gold or silver, and Blue reds.
- Breed Size:
- APA/ABA Class:
- Single Comb Clean Leg
Japanese Bantams are a tiny breed of chicken known for their extremely short legs, large combs and graceful, arched tails. The wings of a Japanese bantam will touch the ground as it walks. This breed originated in Southeast Asia and were kept by Japanese aristocrats and affluent fanciers of poultry as ornamental garden fowl as their beauty far surpassed their egg production. They are appreciated in gardens still as their tiny feet do little damage. A wonderful show bird, these tiny birds require little feed and space but put on a big show. The Black Tailed White Japanese Bantam was recognized by the American Poultry Standard of Perfection in 1874 and have maintained a strong presence in the show circuit ever since.
Japanese Bantam eggs
Japanese Bantam hens
Japanese Bantam rooster
Chicken Breed Info:
Breed Purpose: Ornamental
Climate Tolerance: All Climates
General Egg Info:
Egg Productivity: Medium
Egg Size: Small
Egg Color: White
Wild / restless,Flighty,Bears confinement well,Noisy,Shy
Breed Colors / Varieties:
There are several recognized colors of the Japanese Bantam, such as Black, Black or Blue Tailed white, White, Blue, Black Tailed Buff, Buff Columbian, Birchen or Grey, Cuckoo. Frizzles of any color, Mottleds (Black, Blue),Brown/reds, Black/red, Wheatan, Partridge, Duckwing Gold or silver, and Blue reds.
I have raised Japanese Black tail whites for a few years and have found them to be very flighty birds so I would not recommend them for first time chicken owner who is wanting a calm, docile pet. The hens are broody and make good mothers, being very protective of their nest and chicks. Finding show quality Japanese can be very hard, due to the fact that it is difficult to hatch show quality chicks. The Japanese standard calls for short legs but this short leg gene can be lethal. A show quality Japanese will have one short leg gene and one regular leg gene. If the bird has two regular leg genes, its legs will be too long. If it has two short leg genes, it will die in the egg. A quarter of the chicks will die in the egg from having the two short leg genes and one quarter of the chicks will have too long of legs. Add normal chick losses to this calculation and very few show quality birds are produced.
Recent User Reviews
Pros - small, nice looks, tame easily, eat little, caring roos, showy
Cons - small(depending on what you want), not ready to accept a new flock when near the other one.
I have one black tailed white roo and he is so amazing. He will not forget the bigger sized chickens as his flock even though he has some more bantams with him. He holds himself proudly and never misses out a chance to help "his" flock, he has always called when there is food and been an active lookout. He is also very friendly. I have gotten him to the point where when I walk by, he is at the edge of the fence where I am. Although he isn't cuddly. He is an amazing rooster that puts many others I have seen to shame, despite his small size.
"Broody, but would never get again"
Pros - broody, okay mothers
Cons - attack other chicks, super skittish, lethal gene
I have two Japanese hens raising chicks together since they wouldn't let me separate themThey are decent mothers, but one of them would peck at the chicks until she got used to them. I had another hen that was broody, and my japanese hen killed one of her chicks. They aren't an outstanding breed so I definitely wouldn't get again.
"Absolutely lovely birds"
Pros - Simply gorgeous, great personalities, friendly roosters, eye catchers, great lawn gnomes
Cons - Difficult to keep in condition, lethal gene
This bird is one of the few breeds that can capture the attention of anyone that walks by it. This breed has extremely short legs (a quality bird's leg is about the average length of a thumb, really nice ones are half that). Its squirrel tail is incredibly beautiful (especially on the roosters, which have extremely long sickles). The tail also fans out and stands upright forming a 'V' with its head, unlike other breeds, which really shows off its sleek feathers. Another key feature is that this breed's wings actually stand nearly vertically when relaxed, allowing the primaries to cover the legs and drag on the ground. This breed also has a large comb on the rooster, and large eyes (prone to frost bite and dryness if your not careful). The overall physique of this bird is extremely unique, and makes this bird incredibly beautiful to look at.
Japanese bantams also come in a variety of colors; black, white, black tailed white, black tailed buff, brown red, mottled, wheaten, and my personal favorite (and the variety I raise) the gray. The most commonly found colors are white, black, and black tailed white. The gray looks very similar to birchen.
Personality wise, these birds reign supreme. I have yet to meet a rooster sweeter than the ones the Japanese throw, and each bird is extremely affectionate. All my Japanese love to be held, and love baths. Honestly, their personalities are such a joy to interact with, and they are always excited to see you.
These are by far my favorite breed of bird, and one of the key reasons I'm so involved with poultry (and showing poultry).
As much as I truly, truly love this breed of bird, there are some cons to owning them.
They are difficult to keep in condition (especially with shows in mind.) Their wing feathers become shredded and covered with whatever is left on the ground when they aren't given routine baths and soft bedding. Their tall tail feathers also are prone to crimping (mostly the roosters), and the long sickles are easily snapped off. If you keep the hens and roosters together, this becomes even more of a problem.
Another con is that this breed produces lethal genes, from their short legs. This means that when you breed two short legged Japanese, 25% of the eggs will develop, but will die days before they're supposed to hatch. However, I personally have not had an issue with breeding my bantams in terms of the lethal gene.
This breed is technically an oriental breed, so don't get this breed expecting to get a huge egg producer. They lay eggs 2-3 times a week, and go through resting periods during the winter. Their eggs are smaller than the average bantam egg.
Overall, this breed is such a treat to own, despite the difficulties in maintaining it. I also want to mention the hens go broody fairly often. It's best to avoid hatchery Japanese chicks, as I guarantee from personal experience they won't look how you're expecting. They have pinched tails, and poor coloration. They also tend to be taller than they really should be, also known as "leggy". This is also a "true bantam" breed, meaning there isn't a larger version of it. Also note that there is no such thing as a "fan" tail variety of this breed. I have met people who have shown this, thinking that this is an accepted form of tail. Its not, and is actually just a pinched tail (a fault).
I recommend this breed to anyone looking for a unique bantam that has a great personality. It's fun to show, and beautiful to look at (and it will get you a lot of attention.) It's great for the hobbiest, the 4H project, and for the serious breeder. Just an awesome breed.
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