about culling.......?!!

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by joe17, Jun 14, 2010.

  1. joe17

    joe17 Songster

    Nov 25, 2009
    I am just getting into silkies......... I got some chicks from Bobbi Porto and some other's locally. Most people say cull heavy. Do you cull a bird even if there is one quality that isnt good? Say I had a silkie that had everything perfect except the toe spacing...... should I keep it and breed it...........or should I cull it?? I dont know when to cull and when not to cull!!!!
  2. georgialee

    georgialee Songster

    Apr 9, 2009
    Knoxville, TN
    that's a good question! I have a mille fleur cochin chick that hatched with a fifth toe and was unsure if I should cull or breed. [​IMG]
  3. Do you have a copy of the silkie standard? If not, your going to need one. If the bird is fine except for the toe spacing, use it. As long as it does have all 5 toes on each foot, and doesnt have duck foot. If it has more or less than 5 toes on each foot, cull it. If it has all 5 toes, but is missing a toe nail, use it. I have one hen with all 5 toes, but she is missing a toenail on one of her 5th toes, probably got torn off somehow when she was a chick. Single combs, cull it. Red combs, cull it.

    Basically at hatch you look for foot dq's, and single combs. If the chick doesnt hatch with feathering to the middle toe, it ain't gonna magically appear later. So those I would sell locally as pet quality chicks. Then you just have to wait and watch how they grow out.
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2010
  4. Mary Of Exeter

    Mary Of Exeter Songster

    Apr 10, 2009
    Rowan County, NC
    I would say keep a bird as long as its flaws are minor. Then once you breed/buy something better, cull the first and use the new. Always stay on the lookout for birds to improve your flock and keep the gene pool from getting too inbred.
  5. VelvetDragon

    VelvetDragon Chirping

    May 25, 2010
    Portland Metro Area, OR
    It isn't just the individual bird's traits either. You want to breed together birds that are complementary to each others' strengths and weaknesses. If you have a bird that's awesome except for toe spacing, you'd breed it to a bird with better feet, but might have a slight weakness somewhere else that the first bird might be stronger at. So remember to consider your overall flock as well. If you only have birds with poor examples of feet, you'll never overcome that through breeding.

    Basic knowledge of genetics and inheritance is important as well as being extremely familiar with the Standard.
  6. suzettex5

    suzettex5 Songster

    May 26, 2009
    Simple reminder you probably already know- cull does not mean kill always. It can mean to seperate from you r breeding flock, or rehome as well. Since I'm not a breeder of silkies (many arent) I bet you have no problem finding a new home for any that arent just right for showing.

    But I bet you already knew that! [​IMG] (just wrote this in case someone didnt know since it seems lots of folks missuse the term, hope ya dont mind) [​IMG]
  7. lildinkem

    lildinkem Songster

    Feb 4, 2009
    Quote:I believe IF there is any outstanding features a given bird has it can been useful for breeding. Example, I have a bird who is not perfect color, but type, size, comb are exceptionally nice. I USE HIM!
  8. Like, for instance, I have a hen that has quite a bit of blueish under color on her crest. I mated her last summer with a nice clear rooster, and go some amazing chicks from her.

    Try the mating out first before you cull the bird, as long as there are no obvious dq's, im talking about defects.
  9. joe17

    joe17 Songster

    Nov 25, 2009
    Ohh yess! When I say cull, I mean sell or re home, not kill!!!!!!!! They are rare in Louisiana and everyone would like a couple of them [​IMG] Im really talking about my 3 month old silkies. I think I will sell them though [​IMG] They dont have feathers up to the middle toe and their wings arent that tight. There crests and color are amazing! The toe spacing isnt that bad neither. Atleast there wings are horizontal! lol The chicks that just hatched from Bobbi Porto have a lot of feathering on their feet, huge vaulted skulls, 5 spaced toes, walnut comb, and look really healthy ,except one! I do have the standards but just dont know how CLOSELY to interpret them! I wanted to know if I cull a bird that has a couple degrees of bad toe spacing or if the wings are just a LITTLE loose.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: