Cornish Bantam Chicken
Cornish Bantam Chicken were developed in the shire (county) of Cornwall, England where they were known as “Indian Games”. They show the obvious influence of Malay and other oriental blood.
Characteristics: The Cornish Bantam Chicken has a broad, well muscled body. Its legs are of large diameter and widely spaced. The deep set eyes, projecting brows and strong, slightly curved beak give the Cornish Bantam Chicken a rather cruel expression. Cornish Bantam Chicken males are often pugnacious and the chicks tend to be more cannibalistic than some breeds. Good Cornish are unique and impressive birds to view. The feathers are short and held closely to the body, and may show exposed areas of skin. Cornish need adequate protection during very cold weather as their feathers offer less insulation than can be found on most other Chickens. Because of their short feathers and wide compact bodies, Cornish are deceptively heavy. Due to their shape, good Cornish often experience poor fertility and artificial mating is suggested. Cornish are movers and need space to exercise and develop their muscles. The old males get stiff in their legs if they do not receive sufficient exercise. The females normally go broody but because of their very minimal feathers can cover relatively fewer eggs. They are very protective mothers but are almost too active to be good brood hens.
- Standard Weights: Cock-44 oz; Hen-36 oz; Cockerel-40 oz; Pullet-32 oz.
- Varieties: Buff Laced Red, Buff, Dark, White Laced Red & White
- Skin Color: Yellow
- Egg Shell Color: Brown
- Use: Exhibition
- Origin: England
Bantams are suitable for smaller backyards as they do not need as much space as other breeds. Bantam hens are also used as laying hens, with some breeds laying up to 150 eggs per year. However, Bantam eggs are only about one-half to one-third the size of a regular hen egg. The Bantam chicken eats the same foods as a normal chicken. In commercial situations they are fed grain-based foods because this is convenient and efficient for the producer. Chickens in the wild eat more insects and vegetation than grains.
Bantams have become increasingly popular as pets as well as for show purposes because they are smaller and have more varied and exotic colors and feather patterns than other chickens.
In contrast, the Bantam rooster is famous in rural areas throughout the United Kingdom and the United States for its aggressive, “puffed-up” disposition that can be comedic in stature. It is often called a “Banty” in the rural United States.
Many bantam hens are renowned for hatching and brooding. They are very protective mothers and will attack anything that gets near their young.
Bantams do have a higher mortality rate when they are kept as backyard pets. They are easy targets for hawks, cats, foxes, or any other small predator.