What bantam breeds lay the best? Experiences?

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by QuoVadis, Sep 22, 2013.

  1. QuoVadis

    QuoVadis Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Can people share their experiences with bantams and laying? I am posting this knowing that bantams are not egg laying machines, but most IME most breeds lay eggs about 1/2-2/3 the size of LF and yet are only 1/4-1/3 the size of them. Plus, I like the taste better because they have larger yolks, percentage wise. And they often make better/more interesting pets.
    Please answer the following:

    Breed:
    How many hens of that breed have you owned?
    How many eggs a week?
    How big of eggs?
    How well do they lay in winter?
    How often did they go broody?
    (thus halting egg production)
    Hardiness: (sick chickens don't produce well)
    Personality? (just for fun, and because most people who want banties to lay well, want them as pets!)


    I am interested in this because in my city you can have 8 bantams (birds under 8in) but only 4 LF, so I am probably going to do all banties. I will for sure be doing D'Uccles. The other breeds I am considering are: D'Anver, Oldandsk dwarfs, Pyncheon, RIR bantams, Barred Rock bantam, Brahma bantam, and EE bantam. (I suppose I should consider Buff Orpington and Wyandotte bantams as well, but I am not a fan of either of these as LF. They were never very tame for me - calm and docile, but aloof.) For reference I will either be ordering from Cackle hatchery or Strombergs.

    D'Anver look super cute, and sweet, but I've heard they are just ok layers. Olandsk look great, but are so rare I don't think I'd b able to locate anything but hatching eggs and I have no incubator. Plus, I would feel bad having so rare a breed without breeding them, and I can't do that in the city. Pyncheon bantams also look great except they tend to go broody apparently, and I'm leaning toward Cackle hatchery, which doesn't have them. Between the RIR, and BR bantams its a toss up, both look like they'd be nice and good producers, but I've never had them. I love standard Brahmas, but I don't know how well the banties lay, and I like EEs, but at least in LF my experiences have been mixed, both in personality and laying. I don't like that unpredictability. Of course there are differences between birds of the same breed, but it is more pronounced in EEs.

    I will post in a separate post my experiences with the bantam breeds I have owned.
     
  2. Whittni

    Whittni Overrun With Chickens

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    Mar 26, 2011
    Southern Utah
    Breed: Barred Rock Bantams
    How many hens of that breed have you owned? 3
    How many eggs a week? 4-ish
    How big of eggs? 1/2 the size of normal eggs
    How well do they lay in winter? Fairly consistant
    How often did they go broody? Rarely, if ever
    Hardiness: Hardy birds in heat/cold
    Personality? They love attention and getting the treats before other chickens. They don't mind being penned up but like to forage around. They are usually in the middle of the pecking order. These are really sweet birds too, if you raise them right they'll be really friendly too.

    I've had a great experience with my Buff Orpington Bantam too, she's so cute and way nicer than the bigger orpingtons.

    [​IMG]




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    Last edited: Sep 22, 2013
  3. QuoVadis

    QuoVadis Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Breed: Mille Fleur D'Uccle
    How many hens of that breed have you owned? 2
    How many eggs a week? Usually about 5
    How big of eggs? 2/3 of a "normal" egg, ("normal" being like maybe a medium or large store egg)
    How well do they lay in winter? Not as well as summer, but never stopped
    How often did they go broody? Never
    Hardiness: Never had any issues
    Personality?
    Lovely, lovely, lovely. Wonderful, friendly people oriented chickens, who are also smart. They like being held, but with their feet under them. They love just hanging out with people, and will always come running when they see you and then stay nearby even after the food is gone. They (and the Sebrights) would also run to us if a rooster or larger hen was after them!


    Breed: Golden Laced Sebright
    How many hens of that breed have you owned? 2
    How many eggs a week? maybe 3-4
    How big of eggs? 1/2 size a "normal" egg
    How well do they lay in winter? Don't really remember
    How often did they go broody?
    One always went broody, the other never.
    Hardiness: Seemed fine
    Personality? Like people, but not super cuddly. They like perching on your shoulders, and even though they are active they still can get pretty tame. The broody one was a good mom.


    Breed: Black frizzle cochin bantam
    How many hens of that breed have you owned? 1
    How many eggs a week? When laying about 5
    How big of eggs? about 2/3 the size of "normal" eggs
    How well do they lay in winter? Some
    How often did they go broody?
    Ours was broody all spring, summer, and fall.
    Hardiness: Fine
    Personality? Active little busy body. Likes coming to check out the people, but not being restrained. Tame, just doesn't like being held.


    Breed: White Silkie
    How many hens of that breed have you owned? 1
    How many eggs a week? When laying probably 5
    How big of eggs? maybe 2/3 the size of a normal egg
    How well do they lay in winter? NA
    How often did they go broody?
    Constantly, when not sick
    Hardiness: She was not very hardy. Died young, and was sick several times. I don't think is necessarily normal though
    Personality? Very sweet and calm, good mommy, maybe not as much personality as some of the others, but really nice.


    Breed: Old English Game
    How many hens of that breed have you owned? 2
    How many eggs a week? maybe 3 ?
    How big of eggs? 1/2 the size of a normal egg
    How well do they lay in winter? NA
    How often did they go broody?
    NA
    Hardiness: Both died young, one before ever laying. Never strong. (But this may be atypical since they were from the same person as the silkie above - also, not that hardy - and the rest mentioned were ordered from McMurray and are all about 7 years old, still alive at my parents place, except for one of the Sebrights who had an untimely demise falling into the steer's water tank in winter.)
    Personality? Very sweet and calm, almost too docile to be real, seemed sleepy a lot, especially when getting scratches, but maybe some of this was because they were sickly.
     
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2013
  4. QuoVadis

    QuoVadis Chillin' With My Peeps

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    How is she in all the categories compared to the BR bantams?
     
  5. QuoVadis

    QuoVadis Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm especially interested in the RIR bantam, and haven't been able to find much info on them, only their standard counterpart.
     
  6. Whittni

    Whittni Overrun With Chickens

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    Mar 26, 2011
    Southern Utah
    The Buff Orpington Bantam is fine, she doesn't lay as often though maybe 2 eggs a week for my hen in particular. I meet a flock of the RIR Bantams when I bought my Barred Rock Banties and the Orpington bantam...they were really docile and had to have been good layers for the family to have had so many of them. the RIR were very shiny.
     
  7. Inkheart

    Inkheart Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 15, 2010
    Columbus Ohio
    Breed: Silver Pencilled Plymouth Rocks
    How many hens of that breed have you owned?6
    How many eggs a week? they lay about every other day
    How big of eggs? fair size half of my large fowl birds
    How well do they lay in winter? typical to any hen in the winter
    How often did they go broody?
    (thus halting egg production) Oh my often!!!!!
    Hardiness: (sick chickens don't produce well) They are very very hardy
    Personality? (just for fun, and because most people who want banties to lay well, want them as pets!) Super friendly - alot follow me like little dogs - my rooster is awesome and actually plays with my dogs - lots of character - great foragers - almost seem to have a sense of humor
     
  8. Freeholder

    Freeholder Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Klamath County, OR
    This was a good thread! Let's see if we can get it going again! I'd like to see information for Wyandottes, White-faced Black Spanish, healthy Silkies (the only bantam breed I've ever owned, but they were killed by a neighbor dog shortly after they started laying), Partridge Rocks, and Leghorns -- all bantam, of course. And please, if people wouldn't mind including where they got their birds, since different strains can vary quite a bit....

    Kathleen
     
  9. fatcatx

    fatcatx Chillin' With My Peeps

    Great reference thread! Hoping more people will add info [​IMG]

    Any Bantam Brahma owners? (No bantams yet but plan to add some!)
     
  10. QuoVadis

    QuoVadis Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I now have more d'Uccles, a d'Anver, Pyncheon, Dutch, and EE bantam from Privetts. When they start laying I'll post how they all do.
     

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