Im just wondering what you do at a chicken show and what the judge does when examining a bird.
What do you do at a show?
At a sanctioned show, not just a fair type, youth show, but a sanctioned show by the ABA or APA, you signup in advance. The show has a downloadable form. PoultryShowCentral has most of the shows, dates, and links to the clubs hosting the shows.
Usually the day before, you travel to the show, check into a motel, and head over to the exhibition hall. You stop first at the secretary's desk and sign in. The secretary gives you your coop numbers so you know where to go. You may be asked to present your NPIP papers at the time as well.
You head down to the coops assigned to you and unpack your birds. You probably will spend an hour dressing your birds, cleaning them, smooth them, dressing their legs and combs and settling them. You'll need to hang a drink cup and a feed cup.
You chat with others in the hobby, many of whom will becomes good friends. You might go out to dinner with some folks and for certain? You'll hear a LOT of chicken talk.
Early the next morning, you quickly return to the hall and check on your bird. Clean the coop, toss in fresh chips and take a breath. It might well be that your class is first up to be judged. We're not allowed in the aisles during judging. The judge and his/her clerk are to be left alone to do their work. They'll handle each and every bird. They look for conformation to the Standard, they check for faults and look for conditioning, the quality of the bird's cleanliness and the bird's being proud to show themselves in the coop. This is called conditioning and conditioning is a huge part of showing the birds.
When the judging is over, you rush down to your coop to see what was marked on your coop card.
The day is pretty much spent chatting with other chickeneers. It is one of the best places in the world to be, a chicken show hall.
If you see some "notes" or code marks on your coop card, you can certainly find the judge and ask what the marks meant and how those codes applied to your bird.
If you are fortunate you might see RV reserve variety, or BV best variety, RB reserve of breed, BB best of breed, CH AM champion American, or CH LF champion large fowl. The odds? Are overwhelmingly against those kinds of positioning, but the learning of stuff is incredible. You get to see birds so much better than your own and it challenges you to breed them much better and you cannot wait to get back in the show room again.
Edited by Fred's Hens - 3/17/16 at 5:38pm