How does one get into/started showing chickens?

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by Sequin, Apr 27, 2009.

  1. Sequin

    Sequin Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 20, 2008
    Okay, I understand ALL about showing dogs and horses. But chickens is new to me. Are shows held separate from fairs and such? How do you know when there will be a show in your area? Is there a registry like AKC is to dogs? I get the standard portion, but if you have a chicken from a hatchery that meets the standard, can you show it? Or does it need to be registered with a pedigree behind it etc.? In dogs you register your dog with AKC with a specific name i.e. Fido's simply smashing; do you do the same with chickens? How do you enter a show? what is the progression of becoming a champion chicken? Or are chickens not attaining championships but rather best of breeds and then best of shows like they do in dogs? I would love to learn more about it and one day have a show chicken of my own. Thanks for any and all help for this baffled show newbie!!! [​IMG]
     
  2. Three Cedars Silkies

    Three Cedars Silkies Overrun With Chickens

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    No, there isn't any registration process. Aside from fairs, you can google search "poultry show" in your area. Also, go to the website for the breed of birds you want to show and they will usually list all of the shows for the year.

    We started by going to our fair for the first show. Then my daughter was bitten by the "show" bug and we found another show about an hour away. After winning in both shows she was even more pumped and we entered a few of our birds in the "national" show which happened to be an hour away this year.

    When you go to your first show...ask LOTS of questions. People are great...much nicer than at horse and dogs shows!! I've shown horses before so I have some perspective on that.

    As far as hatchery birds meeting standards...it will usually be "barely" and you will be embarrassed when you get to the show and see these gorgeous birds of the same breed!! [​IMG] I would suggest that you look here or on eggbid.com for someone selling birds that are truly show quality birds.

    Whatever you decide...go to have fun...not to win! You'll have a wonderful time and make lots of friends.
     
  3. jenjscott

    jenjscott Mosquito Beach Poultry

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    Find a show and go to it. You can usually find someone who will tell you all about it. Especially the youth program kids love to share their knowledge. There are many different levels. The apa and aba sanction shows and usually keep a list. skyblueegg.com usually keeps an updated list. Buy a copy of the standars ans it has the VERY complicated scoring method so you can see how the judges are supposed to rank the chickens. Some shows have internet entry forms, some do not.
     
  4. Sonoran Silkies

    Sonoran Silkies Flock Mistress

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    Poultry Press is a monthly newspaper for the poultry fancier. Virtually all shows are listed, as well a breeder advertisements.

    I absolutely agree about hatchery birds--chances of getting a competative bird are slim to none--chance of embarrassing yourself is almost certain.
     
  5. flyingmonkeypoop

    flyingmonkeypoop Overrun With Chickens

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    I think showing chickens is much much better than showing horses or dogs, less politics and such. Like what has been said you can sometimes find them in your area. There are probably state poultry associations in your area that have a couple shows. Entries are cheap and simple. You dont need $1000 clothes to show, if you are a youth and doing fitting and showing all you need is black pants and a white longsleeve shirt.

    Basically how the show goes is you send in your entry form then keep your chickens from getting broken feathers (clipped wings are a disqualification) then about a week before the show you wash the chicken and keep it in a clean cage after that. Also feed corn after you wash them, it hardens the poop so its not all runny and so it wont get on the feathers. When you get to the show you check in and all that and put your birds in the cages.
    Normally the morning of judging thats when you fix the birds up.By that I mean put some baby oil or vetRX on the comb, wattles, face, earlobes, legs, and beak, it makes a huge difference. I reccomend getting a shine stuff for them (if they arent a white bird, they collect dust fast). We get it from Walmart in the hair department, I think its just called shine or something, black people use it alot (not being racist), its like $2 a bottle and lasts forever. It works really good on the roosters and on hens it makes them look good too. You basically spray it on them and wipe them down with a soft rag. After that you basically wait for the judge to do their thing. In the mean time thats when you talk with other people and get tips and hints from the old timers, get new breeding stock, and just wait. It sounds boring but I like it.
    Also if you have birds with a beard, muff, or crest you should take the water away the morning before showing because they will go to drink and their beard/muffs/crest will get wet and they wont look good at all.
     
  6. Sonoran Silkies

    Sonoran Silkies Flock Mistress

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    Oh yes, silkies are FAMOUS for dunking their head into the water cup just as the judge starts down their row [​IMG] Doesn't seem to be an issue with the hard feathered birds (such as OEGB or moderns) but with soft feathers (cochin) it's noticeable even without crests or beards. Pop bottle waterers or rabbit waterers help.

    If you have white birds, don't feed corn if you can avoid it--turns their plumage an icky yellow. Any grains will firm up the stool; I use rice, wheat, oatmeal, safflower & flaxseed.
     
  7. flyingmonkeypoop

    flyingmonkeypoop Overrun With Chickens

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    That is one of the reasons I stayed away from silkies, they are so easy to mess up before showing, a drop of water can ruin them it seems.

    Oh which reminds me about hair drying. Normally we would dry the chickens with hair dryers. With normal feathered birds you want to blow with the feather so they stay flat except like orpingtons and cochins you want to go against the feather in their fluff to make it bigger. With frizzles and silkies you want to go towards the head to make them more fluffy, some people take a hair dryer with them to fluff their birds before showing.
     
  8. Sonoran Silkies

    Sonoran Silkies Flock Mistress

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    and to dry off the occasional head dunking [​IMG]
     
  9. therealsilkiechick

    therealsilkiechick ShowGirl Queen

    Jul 18, 2007
    Northwestern, pa
    i agree with everything above i also wanted to add that sometimes vaccines and testing is required so make sure u check into that. each state is different and the show regs should tell u in the book what is required.

    here in pa we r required to vaccinate for ilt no less than 30 days prior to opening day of show and no more than 1 year. we r also required to have our birds tested for ai and pt and have negative results within 90 days prior to opening day of that show also. however when i showed in ny last year pt negative was all i needed for that state.

    in our state as well as many others people like me who r liceansed poultry techs or liceansed vet, or lisceansed vet techs r the only ones who can test birds for shows so if u need testing that is who u need to look for. poultry techs r the cheapest to get testing done though since we usually only charge for supplies and gas or shipping if needed. we work for the dept of ag for our state so any samples i take get tested at penn state by the state vets/dept of ag. we r liceansed to test any poultry, waterfowl and i believe pigeons within the state of pa.

    so please check into ur state and show regs to see what is required because if u do not have proper testing or vaccines most shows and fairs do not do that on the spot testing and u could miss out on the show u r wanting to enter. be aware you may need these things in advance to showing.
    silkie
     
  10. Sequin

    Sequin Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 20, 2008
    Thank you all for your insight and informative replies!! I really Really appreciate it. I was kind of figuring that competitive chickens don't typically come from hatcheries; just like Best of Breed winners don't come from puppy mills. However, I was wondering more because of pedigree or registration etc. But I still really appreciate the point, because what might seem lovely to me could be really nothing compared to that of carefully planned breeding stock by someone experienced in the field. I am going to go search around and see if I can find a show nearby to attend and ask and see the workings of showing chickens. [​IMG] YAY I am so excited!!! [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     

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