Bantam recommendations, for a Mainer

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by m.kitchengirl, Dec 3, 2011.

  1. m.kitchengirl

    m.kitchengirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My son saw some Belgian D'uccles at the Common Ground Fair in Maine, and some Seramas, and really liked them.
    We have four chickens and I plan to add a few next spring.
    He wants to have a pair of Bantams as "his" own pets. I am not a fan of kids having pets UNLESS I am also into the animal & don't mind taking on the responsibility of its care myself, but I wanted to add a Bantam anyhow, if I can do it well.
    I have a nice A frame coop that is not in use that I could use for them, but wonder a few things:

    1. Our winters are long, cold & oft snowy - are there any bantam breeds that would be better suited to these conditions?
    (I thought maybe Russian Orloff Bantams, but I have read they can be flighty and want my son's experience to be as positive as possible.)
    2. Are there any breeds of bantam that lay semi frequently?
    (I wouldn't mind some little eggs to add into the egg bowl.)
    3. Are there any good books geared toward kids about showing / raising chickens?
    (I know that Storey's Guide is great, my son reads at about a tenth grade level.)
    4. I think it would be great for him to get into showing. Are there bantam breeds that are more successful at shows than others?

    Thanks in advance.
    He is a responsible, caring boy & would love a loving pet. I am lucky both my guys are very gentle and respectful of all of our animals without me having to tell them. We do have rules about friends & how they are allowed to interact with the critters, and they are wonderful about keeping their friends in line, too.
    I have also looked into 4-H here, but won't be able to get him into the program until after Christmas & thought he could start researching sooner so we can decide before we start the great chick/egg hunt in January.
     
  2. HenThymes

    HenThymes pippin ain't easy

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    Bantam Orpingtons!! Great size, several colors, winter hardy, nice egg size, decent layers, not too oftenly broody, non aggressive, not a ton of people have them and yes great for kids and showing!! [​IMG]

    ps- clean legged so no mud or snow stick to leg feathers. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2011
  3. chicken_boy_Kurt

    chicken_boy_Kurt Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 20, 2008
    Well first, stay away from any breed with single combs, especially if you're going to be keeping a cock. The single comb will get frost-bitten very quickly, and they lose heat through it.

    Sumatras, Brahmas, Dominiques... those are some good breeds I know of. I don't have much experience with non-single-combed breeds, except Sumatras.
     
  4. m.kitchengirl

    m.kitchengirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Also, I should add that I am doing a GIANT upgrade to my chicken set up next year and heat would be an option (though I would prefer NOT to have to). I like the bantam orp idea. We all love our standard orp. She is a doll. My son's favorite chicken, in fact.
    I didn't know Dominques and Brahmas came in bantam, I think they are gorgeous, too. I knew y'all were the folks to turn to.
    Keep these great ideas coming!
     
  5. HenThymes

    HenThymes pippin ain't easy

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    Feb 27, 2010
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    m.kitchengirl :

    Also, I should add that I am doing a GIANT upgrade to my chicken set up next year and heat would be an option (though I would prefer NOT to have to). I like the bantam orp idea. We all love our standard orp. She is a doll. My son's favorite chicken, in fact.
    I didn't know Dominques and Brahmas came in bantam, I think they are gorgeous, too. I knew y'all were the folks to turn to.
    Keep these great ideas coming!

    If you already have a standard orp and don't have to do anything special for her in the winter I doubt you would have to do anything special for the bantams, they are just like their standard counter parts just in a smaller package. [​IMG]
     
  6. 1muttsfan

    1muttsfan Overrun With Chickens

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    So far my favorite bantams have been my lavender Ameraucanas, they are sweet and funny, even the rooster is a little charactor, and they lay pretty little blue eggs. A really good breed for children is bantam cochins, they are very docile and make good pets.
     
  7. langshan

    langshan Out Of The Brooder

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    I would recommend Wyandotte Bantams, Rose Comb Rhode Island Red Bantams, Dominque Bantams.

    Mike in NC
     
  8. m.kitchengirl

    m.kitchengirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    This is all great info. I will have my son do some research & pick from the Orpington, Wyandotte, Dominique, and maybe Cochins. I worry about them with their fluffy feet once the snow flies.
    They (Cochins) are fairly good broodies, though, right? I know Wyandottes are supposed to be. I am hoping it is true come spring & my standard Orpington will help us grow our little backyard flock.

    Any book recs - especially re: showing that would appeal to a younger person?
     
  9. geweldig23

    geweldig23 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would recommend wyandotte bantams, they come in a lot of different varieties. I also think bantam buckeyes would do well because they have pea combs. Brahmas are BEAUTIFUL bantams as well. But the feathered feet can be messy in winter. Bantam cornish would do well probably too, I personally like the cornish, but many think they are ugly.
     
  10. geweldig23

    geweldig23 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 16, 2010
    Ohio
    m.kitchengirl :

    This is all great info. I will have my son do some research & pick from the Orpington, Wyandotte, Dominique, and maybe Cochins. I worry about them with their fluffy feet once the snow flies.
    They (Cochins) are fairly good broodies, though, right? I know Wyandottes are supposed to be. I am hoping it is true come spring & my standard Orpington will help us grow our little backyard flock.

    Any book recs - especially re: showing that would appeal to a younger person?

    Cochins are known more for their broodiness than wyandottes are. If you could get your hands on a 4-H or FFA book, those will have showing tips in them. Or, you can always ask for show tips on BYC!​
     

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