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Hamburgs Redcaps and Dorkings

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by Lukieg, Mar 18, 2012.

  1. Lukieg

    Lukieg New Egg

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    Mar 16, 2012
    I have decided to work mostly with redcaps.. but dabble in dorkings and hamburgs.. This will be my first flock in years. I am getting my stock from Mcmurray hatchey. The redcaps have me a bit concerned.. Im not sure where to get new stock.. to keep the gene pool from getting too shallow.. is it possible to throw a little dorking in the mix once and a while.. to get the size back (more dual purpose) or would this present more harm then good? The stock for redcaps as im sure you all know.. is very limited.. here in canada espicially. Thanks again.. Great forum!
     
  2. NYREDS

    NYREDS Overrun With Chickens

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    One of the most common mistakes beginning breeders make is to immediately mix two or more unrelated strains. since you don't even have these birds yet worrying about adding new stock is premature. You're right about the relatively limited number of sources for Redcaps but that's not reason enough to act rashly.
    Someone else on here started with McMurray Redcaps & they don't look too bad. You didn't say how many chicks you were going to order but I'd suggest you get as many as you can afford & house, at least 25. & more if possible. Grow them out, cull heavily & line breed. If you line breed properly there's no need to add new blood for many years. That said, along the way you may want to try an outcross but make it a limited outcross & be sure to keep good records.
    I certainly wouldn't cross in Dorkings. The body types are very different & then there's the matter of the extra toe.
     
  3. Lukieg

    Lukieg New Egg

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    Mar 16, 2012
    I thought i read somewhere that the dorking played a key role in the redcap.. and that in the past.. it was very common for them to have an extra toe.
     
  4. NYREDS

    NYREDS Overrun With Chickens

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    It may well be that Dorkings were part of the package that developed the Redcap. I don't know either way so can't argue the point. That doesn't mean that reintroducing Dorkings to a now established breed is a good idea, I don't think it is. As t the extra toe it is now not part of the breed description & as such I would assume something you wouldn't want to reintroducce. But hey, it's your breeding program do what you want.
     

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