4H Show Chicken

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by rachele30, Mar 6, 2012.

  1. rachele30

    rachele30 In the Brooder

    Mar 5, 2012
    My 12 year old son has recently joined 4H. I am needing any tips or information on showing chickens as I don't know a thing about showing them. I don't know what makes a good show chicken, what to look for, what they look for, what breed is the best, etc. Any suggestion or information would be greatly appreciated. We already have hybrid splash orphingtons, hybrid blue orphintons, lavender rooster, black orphington, easter eggers, hybrid buff orphingtons and black austrolorps. Would any of these be good for showing?

  2. Oregon Blues

    Oregon Blues Crowing

    Apr 14, 2011
    Central Oregon
    Your son will enjoy his experience more if you buy him a show quality chicken. He needs a purebred chicken and he will be competing against people who have purchased quality birds.

    If he needs a bird for showmanship, then any chicken that is calm and doesn't mind being handled and isn't bothered by new situations.
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2012
  3. rachele30

    rachele30 In the Brooder

    Mar 5, 2012
  4. ok i REALLY want to join 4H and show, so this thread will be good for me
    1 person likes this.

  5. Chic_girl

    Chic_girl Songster

    Jul 23, 2011
    Near Columbus OH
    Hello! I'm a fellow 4-H member (Last year! [​IMG]I'm too old..), but sorry to say, I have shown ducks for most of my 4-H years. Last year was my first time with a chicken project. I used hatchery quality chickens, because that was the only area I knew to get chicks from, and breeders were often too far away. Aside from that, my parents didn't particularly care to pay for 'fancy-fancy' chickens, let alone drive too far to get some.
    For your son, I suggest you use some of your pure-bred Orpingtons for Breed shows, but you can probably use other birds for Showmanship
    For Showmanship shows, the judge looks at how the 4-Her handles the bird and how much knowledge he/she has about that bird (age, gender), that breed (history, uses) and chickens in general. I never had amazing SQ birds, so showmanship was my favorite.
    For this, use the calmest, most easily-handled bird. It doesn't have to be a specific breed- I've known members who have placed highly with well-behaved mutts and EEs
    Breed shows are based solely upon the bird, and how close they are to the standard of perfection (SOP). My chickens were from a hatchery, but they placed 2nd overall. My county's poultry program is made up mostly of hatchery stock, so birds almost never meet the SOP. Judges here are pretty lenient in their judging, because they know not everyone has access or can afford SQ birds, but I've heard other counties are much more competitive, and some amazing quality birds are found at large county or state fairs.

    I love 4-H, and its a great experience for any kid. The first couple years are all about learning how to succeed, not about winning. For most of my years, I never placed in any show, but it's still great to talk to judges- they are always willing to give advice for care and breeding.
    I hope your son has as great of a time as I've had, and I'm glad you support his desire to join!
    1 person likes this.
  6. Whittni

    Whittni Crowing

    Mar 26, 2011
    Southern Utah
    Go with bantam cochins, silkies or rosecomb bantams, those are all really great chickens start with!
    1 person likes this.
  7. rachele30

    rachele30 In the Brooder

    Mar 5, 2012
    Thank you all so much for the advice. I feel a lot better about it now. Thanks for your suggestions, knowledge of the 4H program and support! Very much appreciated!

  8. DCasper

    DCasper Songster

    Jan 13, 2012
    Benton, KY
    What a wonderful experience for you and your family. I grew up in the suburbs and wish we had the opportunity to learn the lessons and values taught by 4H.

  9. rachele30

    rachele30 In the Brooder

    Mar 5, 2012
    Yes it is a great opportunity and we feel blessed to be able to have the experience. We live on an 80 acre family owned farm in extreme souther illinois. We have every critter imaginable and we love every minute of it. Alot of hard work but it sure pays off!! Wouldn't every want to live anywhere else. I wish you would have had the opportunity of clubs like 4H. It teaches so many values and lessons.

  10. aoxa

    aoxa Crowing

    I agree with the silkie option. Silkies seem to place really well from what I've seen.. They are easy to care for, and from what I've experienced much easier to clean (ie: their feathers don't take as long to dry with a blow dryer) :p

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