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A bantam is a small variety of poultry, especially chickens. Etymologically, the name bantam is derived from the city of Bantam  - currently known as "Banten Province" or previously "Banten Residency" - once a major seaport, in Indonesia. European sailors restocking on live fowl for sea journeys found the small native breeds of chicken in Southeast Asia to be useful, and any such small poultry came to be known as a bantam.
Most large chicken breeds have a bantam counterpart, sometimes referred to as a miniature. Miniatures are usually one-fifth to one-quarter the size of the standard breed, but they are expected to exhibit all of the standard breed's characteristics.
Phillip brought 7 Bantam hens & 1 rooster over here today. They were being mean & pestering their little guinea hens, so he wanted to get rid of them. Michael was tickled to death. That's him you see sticking his head out of the chicken building above. He said he had seen the little Bantam ones when he & Clay bought ours & wanted one SO bad, but Clay had said these little guys were good-for-nothing. Oh well.....how can he say 'No' when they were given to us & his kid is SO thrilled. Seriously.....I wish you could've seen the gleam in his eyes.....he looked like a little kid on Christmas morning!! He already came up here after supper this evening with his first little bitty Bantam egg. It was so cute.