Originally Posted by sherylreno
I have no other choice at this time and can't do the spiral breeding because this breed is so rare here. I went to a poultry show last weekend and there were none for sale only 4 were being shown. I'm not going to have hatchery ducks either so where can I turn to now?
I have SQ SWH's and I want to keep it that way as well.
I'm learning a lot about breeding now. I didn't know the hen determines what sex the duckling will be. All poultry have WZ chromosomes instead of XY.
Where are you getting your stock from?
There are two hatcheries (one in US, one in Canada) that are opperated by only a couple of people, and stock from them is almost like breeder stock, and they are very reputable. Holderread's (Dave Holderread) is in Oregon, and Performance Poultry (Jason Cain) is in Ontario. I'm getting the ducklings from Performance Poultry, because I've been pleased with the ducks I've gotten from him before, and since no other canadian hatchery sells WH, and I haven't found breeder stock for sale (don't get me wrong, there are breeders around, but no WH for sale yet, and the ducklings are already coming). I'm not intending to have SQ Welshies. I'm going to open an egg strain. Now some birds, when breeders focus on utility alone (like red stars) can become really mangy-looking and aren't terribly hardy. WH, however, as long as I keep improving hardiness, alone with utility, I don't care what the judge thinks of them. I just like the look of Harlequins, and because of their genetics, they usually look different anyways (I would also like to point out the show I like entering is not 'hard core' and is only about 200 birds, and isn't APA sanctioned. It's the only show like that around here. It is not a good show for the fancier or show-breeder, such as yourself) ! Oh, I will show them, showing is lots of fun, but like I've said on another string, Showing, for the bird's sake, is usually only feather-deep, and if the birds do what they're supposed to, I'll be content, even if they don't place. Basically, I don't mind starting with HQ stock, because, to become a good breeder, there needs to be something to hone my skills on. However, it's very good that you do not want to lower your stock's quality. If you can save yourself years of breeding, good! (It also supports those who have obviously done years of hard breeding). Actually, the main reason I'm getting WH is because previously, the only local strain of Appleyard (now there are two) was only mediocre at best in it's utility, and I am displeased with it. Harlequins will lay more eggs, and, as soon as he has some for sale, I'd like to try some of Snyder Waterfowl's Blue cream Appleyards, which should be better in the meat department than the old appleyards (due to Rouen blood).