Dominique Bantam Chicken
The Dominique Bantam Chicken breed developed from the fowl introduced during the early settlement of New England. These were of the type predominating in the south of England and from which the Sussex and Dorking descended. This stock was widely distributed in the Eastern half of the United States by mid 19th century.
The breed was generally known as Dominiques except in the region of origin where they were known as Plymouth Rock and occasionally as Pilgrim Fowls. The differentiation between Plymouth Rock and a Dominique Bantam Chicken was not made until 1870 when the management of the New York state poultry show ruled that only rose combed fowl of intermediate size could compete as Dominique Bantam Chicken’s, and that all medium and large single combed fowl of this color would be known as Plymouth Rocks. A small single combed bird of this color was called a Dominique Leghorn.
Characteristics: Good brooder and good mother. well adaptable to confinement or free range. Very calm mostly, but more flighty than other breeds. Very cold hardy.
- Standard Weights: Cock-28 oz; Hen-24 oz; Cockerel-26 oz; Pullet-22 oz.
- Varieties: Barred
- Skin Color: Yellow
- Egg Shell Color: Brown
- Use: Exhibition
- Origin: United States
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.
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.