Old English Game Bantam

By Chicken Fans Editorial Team

The Old English Game Bantam is a truly standout breed with its striking appearance and unique history. These little wonders are here to steal the show with their sassy personality, and although they may not be the best egg-layers of the bunch, they sure will bring diversity to any flock.

  • Old English Game Bantam hens lay around 2 to 3 eggs weekly
  • Old English breed, considered rare
  • Active foragers and flighty
  • Not beginner-friendly
EggsBetween 100 – 150 eggs yearly
Egg ColorWhite to cream
Egg SizeSmall
Weight20 – 24 oz
HardinessHeat and cold tolerant
TemperamentActive and flighty
Color28 recognized colors


The Old English Game Bantam boasts a compact, muscular body with a proud and upright posture. These bantams come in a wide variety of colors, including black, white, blue, red, and silver duckwing, to name a few. Their heads are small and carried high, adorned with a well-developed five-pointed comb and wattles.

Bantams are smaller in size than their larger counterpart. The males typically weigh around 24 ounces (680 grams) on average, while the females are slightly lighter, weighing approximately 20 ounces (560 grams) on average. Adults typically stand about 6 to 8 inches tall.

One of the most unique features of the Old English Game Bantam is its confident demeanor. They possess an air of self-assurance, strutting around with an unmistakable swagger. Their small size doesn’t hinder their abilities – these bantams are agile flyers and excellent foragers.

Credits: @hensonoxney (IG)

Breed History of the Old English Game Bantam

The history of the Old English Game can be traced back hundreds of years. The breed originated in England, where it was likely developed for cockfighting. It was bred from various fighting breeds, including the Malay and the Aseel, for its use in cockfighting.

However, with the abolishment of this cruel sport, the Old English Game found a new purpose as an exhibition bird. Today, it is highly regarded for its ornamental qualities and is a popular choice for poultry shows.

Several poultry associations recognize the Old English Game Bantam as an official breed, including the American Poultry Association, the American Bantam Association, the Poultry Club of Great Britain, and more.

Old English Game Bantam Egg Production

If you are looking for a breed that excels in egg production, the Old English Game Bantam might not be your first choice. While these bantams do lay eggs, their productivity is not their strongest suit.

A healthy hen will lay around 100 to 150 eggs per year. This translates to approximately 2 to 3 eggs per week.

As is the case with all breeds, it is important to note that egg production numbers can vary depending on factors such as diet, age, season/weather, and overall health.

Old English Game Bantam eggs are small to medium in size, with an average weight of around 1.5 ounces (42 grams). These bantams lay a range of shades, including white, cream, and occasionally tinted eggs.

This breed is known to be quite broody. They have strong maternal instincts and are dedicated and attentive mothers. Females can also fiercely protect their young, so caution is advised.


The Old English Game Bantam has a temperament that matches its bold appearance. These bantams are known for their energetic nature, a temperament that is a carryover from their fighting days. They are highly active and love to explore their surroundings. They can forage for themselves quite effectively and do well in a free-range environment.

Despite their small size, this lively breed should have more than average room to roam. They will thrive if you have a backyard or a spacious area for them to explore. They do not adapt well to confined spaces and can become distressed when caged.

Old English Game Bantam fares well in both cold and heat. Due to their small size, they can more easily regulate their body temperature. However, as with any breed, it is important to provide them with appropriate shelter and shade during extreme weather conditions to ensure their well-being.

Is the Old English Game Bantam Suitable for Beginners or Children?

Despite their small size, the Old English Game Bantam packs a punch of personality. Their feisty temperament might not be the best fit for beginner chicken owners or families with young children.

Their light weight and high activity level means they can fly quite easily, escaping runs and other enclosures. They are also quite territorial, do not get along well with other breeds of chicken, and mothers are aggressively protective of their chicks.

Therefore, experienced poultry owners are best suited to the care of this breed.


The Old English Game Bantam is a breed that combines beauty, history, and a spirited personality. Its striking appearance and unique characteristics make it a favorite among poultry enthusiasts worldwide.

Whether you are looking for an ornamental bird, a broody hen, or a charming addition to your flock, the Old English Game Bantam is a breed worth considering. So, embrace the allure of this remarkable breed and experience the joy of owning these captivating bantams in your own backyard.

To learn more about chicken breeds, check out our ‘Chicken Breeds Page‘ to see every specific breed we address. Or go to our listicle breed summary on ‘The Classroom‘, or, if you’re unsure where to start, take a look at our ‘Chicken Breeds: Ultimate Beginners Guide‘.

Chicken Fans Editorial Team

The editorial team consists of 3rd generation chicken owners Kat, journalist, editor-in-chief, and Nick, working with illustrators and specialists in the field.