Chickens at the state fair

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by EggCentric, Oct 8, 2007.

  1. EggCentric

    EggCentric Songster

    Sep 14, 2007
    Ball Ground, Ga
    I went to the state fair yesterday and went to see the chickens. I was appalled at the conditions. Most of the birds didn't have water, nothing to perch on, no bedding in the bottom of the cages and a lot of them had three or four birds in one cage. These birds had been here for a week. Most were laying down and panting, a lot of them had huge bald spots on their backs. Now, this was my very first time seeing a chicken exhibit, my question is, is this the norm? There were chickens there that were by themselves in the cage and looked well cared for, but that was like 10 out of 30. Are the owners responsible for caring for the birds while at the fair, or the people running the exhibit? I went and got one of the guys running the exhibit and told him the chickens needed water. He did go and give water, but not to all that needed it. I know one thing, I won't be taking any of my chickens to the state fair.
  2. Standard Hen

    Standard Hen Songster

    May 17, 2007
    I believe it was Zenbirder from New Mexico that experienced the same thing at her local state fair a few weeks ago. Which is obviously disgusting to see! I think it has alot to do on who is running it etc. I know if I had anything to do with it the birds would not be in the conditions that you saw with no water etc. I also think it is the owners who are responsible for their care while they are there. How sad.
  3. horsewishr

    horsewishr Songster

    Jul 7, 2007
    West Michigan
    I think it's the mind-frame of the owners.

    You have to remember what state and county fairs are all about. They're AGRICULTURAL fairs, where people raise crops and livestock, and then auction them off to the highest bidders. A lot of the kids showing chickens are farm kids. Animals are seen as commodities--not pets. I wouldn't be a bit surprised if conditions at home aren't much better.

    Is it Seattle? or Portland? that has a coop tour? That would be the place to see "pet" chickens.
  4. Zenbirder

    Zenbirder Songster

    May 3, 2007
    New Mexico
    Here is the thread, there were some interesting points of view. I would never subject my chickens to the stress of a fair. Our fair was so sad in the chicken area and yet the newspaper reported a glowing story about how wonderful it was, the agricultural attitudes of superiority trump reality in this part of the country every time.
  5. EggCentric

    EggCentric Songster

    Sep 14, 2007
    Ball Ground, Ga
    There were two chickens there, the guy said they were RIR's. They were a dark red, almost black and the hen had no butt. No tail feathers, nothing, it looked like an aracauna(sp?) butt. The man who owned them said they were "Rosecomb RIR's". He also told me that if my RIR was any other color, then it must be a cross! (Hmph!)

    Here is my RIR hen
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2007
  6. Hotwings

    Hotwings Songster

    Jan 27, 2007
    southwestern Michigan
    My county fair (Kalamazoo, Mich) has a very nice livestock area. If the weather is very humid(as it usually is in Aug here) they have one of those huge livestock fans on. The kids at the 4-H are responsible to keep their entries cages clean and ample food and water. None of the birds on display showed any stress, well none I could see. The cages weren't to crowded. Some hens even have laid eggs. I have never seen a perch in a cage at the county fair.
    There is always someone in the livestock barns overseeing the animals, ya know how cityfolk like to poke their fingers and such in cages. I did see a difference in birds on displayed from my county fair(Kalamazoo) and my friends Freebie county (Van Burean), ya see her county is mostly rural and the largest entries were barred rocks and such, where as my fair the largest entries tend to be the fancy birds such as silkies and Polish, although we had a HUGE entries of meat birds. Ya could really see the difference between them and the other birds. The meat entries were panting and sitting, were the other birds were standing and etc.. I wonder if anyone has had a meat bird die on them before the fair.

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