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Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by Wynette, Apr 11, 2014.
A little too far from me, but looks like great fun!
I got my 15 chicks from the breeder in Wisconsin this morning!!
I am preparing to cull....a hard cull....here and I need a little advice, particularly with the cockerels because I have so few of them to choose from. How do you rank your cockerels for culling? Each of mine has something that I don't like and I'm not sure which traits will be the hardest to breed out. I'm not so worried about color (gold partridge), I can work on that, but on body type.
For instance, one cockerel has a smaller head than I like, but he has a nice comb and wattles, pretty good size (not spectacular, but good) and has a bit of a cochin tail (not too cochin, but you can see he has a tendency toward the bunny tail). The second cockerel to chose from has fluffy hocks that I really don't like and his color is a little off. He's younger, so I don't know how the comb and wattles will turn out yet, but the head seems to be of a decent size and I think he'll be a larger bird overall than the first. The third is an adult cock bird that has a nice head, but the comb is too large, sits up at the top of the head and his wattles are too large. Also has the too puffy hocks, but he has great size with a back that is a bit too short for my thoughts. I want to put some birds in the freezer in October, so I'm working up to making my decisions. I have quite a few decent pullets, so they will be a lot easier to cull for me.
Any thoughts are appreciated, I can try to get some pictures if you need them but I personally find it hard to tell much about a bird unless I actually see it in person and unfortunately, there is absolutely no one around here who breeds or knows anything about Brahmas.
It is a little easier with my darks, I only have one cockerel (second has vulture hocks) so I'm hoping to pick up a pair while I'm at the Ohio National. The cockerel I have is only 11 weeks old, so it is a little difficult to tell what he'll end up looking like, but so far I'm liking what I'm seeing.
I would consider only breeding the dark cockerel to the selected gold pullets, but I have one blue pullet and I want to be able to sustain that color. It is easier for me to do that by finding her a decent gold cockerel and after my selection of blues is greater, crossing them to the darks to improve type.
P.S. I also have a hen sitting on 10 eggs, and could possibly get a better cockerel out of that pairing but I'm doubtful and of course won't know for about 4 months if anything good comes out of them. This pair wasn't supposed to give me any chicks, but things happen.........
For your gold partridge what are some of the most common negative fault(s) your birds have? I would find the faults that pop up the most and pick the cockerel that has the most positive improvement on those faults. Hope that gives you some direction.
Oh that show looks fun!. If I attend it will be the Rabbit show, but about 6 hours away so I don't know if possible...
The new chicks I got in I had a question. Some have eye markings some do not. Is that typical of Buff Brahmas? Had TSC of Lights before but I don't recall them as chicks. LOL.
I think I answered my own question. I always ask then research. HAHAHA
I have not found the answer to your question. I remember three breeders of buckeyes getting together and each breeder taking one problem. That idea won't work for me. I have also read that one guy has a judge friend come over during culling season for a day of help, I know nobody. If I was not so ignorant I might try a "total point" evaluation method to see who scored the nearest to 90.
Pictures would help.