Breeding ideas please for PR RIR

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by One Chick Two, Oct 4, 2013.

  1. One Chick Two

    One Chick Two Songster

    Jun 13, 2013
    Hi there! Have some questions and hope some of you awesome posters can give some thoughts…
    Since PR's RIR are not really considered a specific heritage"breed" (not having a standard of excellence) being just a random mix of RIR, Leghorns and New Hampshire… then, what (if any…?) specific male and female breeding characteristics should be striven for when breeding them to replenish stock, or, should we just let them mix- whatever happens happens?

    Good temperament in the papa roo's I heard a complete must. Also heard somewhere that fast maturing roos are also another factor to consider. Don't know if that is true for these birds.

    We have 83. 16 are cockerels, so we do have some roo choices available. I'll post some photos soon. There are different looks and body types to many of the cockerels. Some resemble a bit more 'New Hampshire,' kind of a deep, golden reddish hue. Some have longish feathers, some have green iridescent neck rings and they have great personalities. Some resemble Leghorn by shape, with longish faces/ beaks, or having extremely long legs. A few are Lucile Ball red colored in the neck, but slower to feather-in tail their feathers. A few cockerels are extremely dark like mahogany, very flat and square shaped, but also very slowly feathering in, small, and feathers always seem clumped or messy. (Maybe he's just an enthusiastic eater?) How do we even begin to choose?

    Should we just try to keep the birds looking more RIR? (Not trying to fool anyone, just would like to go with the most informed choices if we should ever need to rehome anybody.) Or, should we just go for the best personalities and let their coloring variations such as the neck rings on males and females happen? Iridescent feathers on hens/ pullets wings and/ or tails? Several of the females have "eyeliner" which seems quite pretty. Some of the females are colored light reddish brown to deep mahogany, some with dark tail feathers and others very little darkness in the tail.
    We believe these birds are lovely, amusing, friendly, affectionate, inquisitive, and especially smart birds, full of energy. Pretty, but subtle, in a dappled way. Input would be very much appreciated. (I know this question's not as exciting as breeding heritage breeds, but we do wish to do right by these chickens if possible.)
    [​IMG] This is Rhode Island Rhett, our 1st choice so far. Terrible driver. Funny little guy. Have a great day...
  2. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    When not breeding to an official standard of perfection, you kind of get to create your own [​IMG]

    What are you looking for in a bird? What are your goals in breeding? Here are mine......

    I agree, good temperament is a must.

    Overall good health is right up there. I don't keep birds that get sick or need coddling.
    Good laying is important. I also like colored eggs.
    Cockerels that grow to a good size is a little farther down my list. I have leghorn and Easter egger blood in my mixed flock, so I don't get huge boys for the table, but they're good enough for me.

    You just need to decide what you want in your next generation. There's no "right" answer, you get to make the answer up yourself! It's like a test you can't fail lol.

    I would spend time on the CSU thread. Some of those folks are serious breeders of heritage birds and you can learn a lot about what to look for in body type of your birds. Even though your birds aren't heritage, and you won't make heritage birds from them, the discussions about what is a fault and what to cull for --especially functional things like pinched tails, etc-- are invaluable.
  3. One Chick Two

    One Chick Two Songster

    Jun 13, 2013
    Thank you so much for your insight and suggestion of the CSU thread- much appreciated! Never would have thought about pinched tails affecting birds so much, and "tented" tails being healthier. Great tips. Thanks again!
  4. budsbirds

    budsbirds Chirping

    If you like to read, the call of the hen is a good one for selection ideas. Written in the 20's, but pretty cool

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