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New to Showing, Breed Ideas & What Are Show Categories?

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by huntbritto, Jan 27, 2013.

  1. huntbritto

    huntbritto Out Of The Brooder

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    I have raised Rhode Island Reds and Barred Rocks in the past, but now I want to steer away from hobby birds and get into showing. I am only going to have 8-10 birds to start and 2 breeds. I am going to get 2 roosters of each breed and 3-5 hens of each breed. Like I said I have NO idea what the categories at shows are besides layers so that info would be great to know. The breeds I am looking at are Silver Spangled Hamburgs, Single Comb Brow Leghorns, Buff Laced Polish, Egyptian Fayoumis, Golden Laced Wyandottes, or Speckled Sussex. Remember I am only getting 2 breeds more than likely but a max of 8-10 birds. Also I live in Iowa so we have cold winters and hot summers but I will keep them heated cooled as needed. PLEASE HELP!

    Thanks for your time,

    -Hunter
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 7, 2014
  2. AraucanaAnnie

    AraucanaAnnie Chillin' With My Peeps

    Hi! You can not show Egyptian fayoumis at a show as they are not recognized by the APA. For large fowl, the classes are American, English, Asiatic, Continental, Mediterranean, and all other standard breeds. Hamburgs are Continental, leghorns are Mediterranean, polish are continental, wyandottes are American and Sussex are English. Also, having 2 roosters for 3-5 hens might not be a good idea. Roosters can get very aggressive with each other over hens. If you want to know anything else feel free to ask me! Welcome to BYC!
     
  3. Chris09

    Chris09 Circle (M) Ranch

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    Last edited: Jan 27, 2013
  4. huntbritto

    huntbritto Out Of The Brooder

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    So what 2 breeds would you recommend, and I want 2 roosters of each breed incase something were to happen to one. What is the easiest class also.
     
  5. poltroon

    poltroon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    What will be "easiest" is going to be very dependent on the shows you attend and the breeds already shown around you.

    Solid colors are easier to show well. For example, if you look at Wyandottes, your best of breed is most often white.

    Now, that's all fine and good... but you know what? I live in a land of mud. I like to keep chickens in tractors. I don't want white chickens. :)

    Get a breed that you love and enjoy.

    The next factor is finding a breed you can get in high quality from a breeder. My daughter is working on golden laced Wyandottes and they have been very difficult to find. As much as we love them, they're not likely to be the best of breed because they don't tend to be as large as the white and it's very hard to get a typey bird that also is without color flaws when there is color. But that's OK. They're beautiful birds and we think there should be more of them.

    A lot of the showing that we do is at the county fairs, where they show not in varieties and breeds but straight to the classes (and even sometimes right to all large fowl). Thus, her GL Wyandottes aren't even compared to other Wyandottes but to all LF American just for a ribbon, and for any champion type award they have to beat all the other clean legged large fowl. It is an uphill battle, if winning is what you want.

    Attend a poultry show in your area. See what breeds are well represented and what breeds are not shown. Decide if you want to go to a breed where there is a lot of action or none at all. Check out Poultry Press and try to find pictures of birds in your breed that are winning nationally. Find a breeder who does well with that breed, and start with the best stock you can find. Chicks are cheap, feed and coops and gas and hotel rooms are what is expensive.

    Good luck!
     
  6. poltroon

    poltroon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    One more thing: the threads here are a great resource. You will have to sift through them to figure out who is a knowledgable breeder and who is not, but there are some valuable nuggets on all of the breed threads that I have worked through. It's one of my first ways now to learn about a breed that is new to me, to get a sense of what criteria are most important for that breed and what issues it has. This is where you find out that breeders are trying hard to get a better tail or a wider head or shorter or longer legs etc.

    And.... if you liked your Barred Rocks or your Rhode Island Reds, there's no reason you can't show those breeds. It's just a matter of getting really good, breeder quality stock, rather than getting birds from the feed store or large hatchery. Barred Rocks are very beautiful and I have seen many very lovely ones.
     
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2013
  7. huntbritto

    huntbritto Out Of The Brooder

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    your advice was helpful, but i plan to show this year as i do not have time to attend shows. We are ordering from mcmurray if that helps at all. I plan to just start at my county fair and then go from there. I would really just like your advice on what out of the breeds i am looking at what you think would work best. I am looking for birds that are different and will blow away the competition. Also how many birds do you show in a comp? Do you show them as trios or as single roosters and hens?
     
  8. poltroon

    poltroon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    From McMurray, you might get lucky and you might not.

    What matters, to 'blow away the competition' [​IMG], is to have birds that really meet the standard well. In large fowl, for example, one of the most important factors is SIZE. True, standard large fowl are BIG, and the hatchery birds tend to have lost that size.

    You are in Iowa which is an area full of poultry breeding. There are surely some excellent breeders available to you locally.

    Find the associations for the breeds that interest you and find a web site. Often there is a list of breeders. You may be pleasantly surprised to find what you want locally.

    Judges aren't wowed by fancy or unusual breeds unless they are also really outstanding individual specimens. The big winners for large fowl in our junior circuit have been Australorps, Buff Orpingtons, and Barred Rocks. Really big, really nice ones.
     
  9. poltroon

    poltroon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The county fairs may do things differently. Our fairs show only singles, one to a coop. You will have to ask to find out what is normal at your fairs.
     
  10. neopolitancrazy

    neopolitancrazy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If you feel you do not have the time to research and locate top chicken breeders in your area, but want to get started this spring with chicks, I would recommend ordering from Duane Urch's hatchery. He is a very highly regarded poultry judge, with a very good reputation for breeding his poultry according to the Standard of Perfection. You can order chicks directly from his hatchery or through the "show quality chicks" section of Strombergs chickens. Although my family and I have been ordering from McMurray since the 1970s, and I still drool over their catalog every spring- for show chickens, go with Urch or find a local chicken fancier.
     

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