Poultry Seminar with APA/ABA Judge Troy Laroche

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by BarnGoddess01, Feb 2, 2012.

  1. BarnGoddess01

    BarnGoddess01 I [IMG]emojione/assets/png/2665.png?v=2.2.7[/IMG]

    I was lucky enough to attend a seminar with breeder and judge, Troy Laroche on the weekend. Topics included: Interpretation of the Standard for the breeding pen and the show room and Breeding Methods and practices to meet goals in your birds. Troy brings extensive breeding, competitive, and judging experience to the classroom. Troy is a licensed APA/ABA judge, a former APA VP and APA District Director. He is currently an ABA District Director.

    I am relatively new to poultry and very inexperienced with breeding and showing - but hoping to learn and improve. You can see what I'm working with in my signature below. I've followed Troy around at shows before and always found him to be generous with information and happy to answer any questions I might have. He was the same at this seminar. The primary points I brought home with me ....

    -don't vaccinate if you don't have a problem (except ILT. See post number 8, below.)
    -pick up your birds. Feel them. Learn how much they weigh.
    -separate the girls and boys as soon as you can tell them apart.
    -he often uses pullets and cockerels for breeding
    -the effects of housing and nutrition on fertility
    -don't hatch eggs from birds that have just been wormed. Fertility is way down.
    -the best show birds don't necessarily make the best breeders
    -type and size comes from the female, colour comes from the male - TYPE first, everything is easy by comparison
    -he discussed faking v. showmanship - can be a fine line but showmanship IS important. If there is an off colour feather, pull it! (You can take things away, just don't add)
    -he talked about veterinarian Dr. Peter Brown and how helpful and generous he is with his time and experience
    -he talked about paying attention to the point system in judging - the head and all its parts really isn't worth that many points in the grand scheme of things (i.e. combs)
    -he showed us toe punching and why it is so important to keep records (loads of banding too but he lost me with the bands)
    -talked about breeding mothers to sons and fathers to daughters (and more distant relations.) Avoid brother/sister if possible
    -understand the difference between faults and DQs
    -he talked about how to improve self-blue (lavender) (apparently they have feather issues) - keep using black
    -when buying stock - always try to get 2 trios. 2 pairs will do but trios are better.
    -mix and match your faults (don't put birds with the same faults together). Complimentary breeding
    -if you have undesirable results - discontinue the line (cull) and start over

    Hopefully, some of you will find this helpful. Let me know if you have any questions.
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2012
  2. Bullitt

    Bullitt Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 16, 2012
    Many hatcheries offer vaccinations of chicks. So this is not needed?

    Should pullets and cockerels be separated as soon as possible to prevent breeding? Or is there another reason?

    You mentioned faults and disqualifications. I am sure it is different with each breed. But can you give some examples of what would be considered faults in a breed and what would be a disqualification?

    Does a disqualification mean that the APA does not consider a chicken a member of the breed or just that the chicken is not close enough to the the standards to compete in a show?
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2012
  3. BarnGoddess01

    BarnGoddess01 I [IMG]emojione/assets/png/2665.png?v=2.2.7[/IMG]

    Those of you that frequent some of the Marans threads may have heard references to the "funky Canadian dew". I mentioned some months back that Troy had told me running around in wet, dewy grass can put stubs (feathers) on legs that are supposed to be clean. Others disputed that claim and since I wasn't confident about what I had heard, we agreed to put it down to funky Canadian dew. I asked Troy for clarification this weekend. He told me I didn't misunderstand. It is his experience that clean legged birds running around in chilly, wet grass can develop stubs. Apparently he has even seen it happen on ducks! He believes it is likely related to cold stimulating hair and fur bearing creatures to accelerate growth of their coats - in order to keep warm. So for those of you exhibiting birds - if your bird is supposed to be clean legged, just to be safe, keep him or her out of the cold, wet grass - just in case!!! [​IMG]
  4. sager:)silkies

    sager:)silkies Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 1, 2011
    or for silkies for example a DQ would be more or less toes,bright red face comb or wattles,vuiture hooks and feathers not truly silkie thats all i can think off
  5. sager:)silkies

    sager:)silkies Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 1, 2011
    i have met him to and he is a very helpful person and very nice
  6. BarnGoddess01

    BarnGoddess01 I [IMG]emojione/assets/png/2665.png?v=2.2.7[/IMG]

    Vaccinations: I would assume, based on what Troy said, if vaccinations are optional and you've never had a problem, vaccinations aren't necessary.

    He recommends separating pullet and cockerels because he says pullets don't always reach their full potential if they have to put up with all the nonsense from young males when they are growing out.

    For faults and disqualifications you need to refer to the SOP. DQs seem to be rather more global (most or all breeds), faults tend to be more breed specific but not always. Some examples of DQs - squirrel tail, sprigs on the comb, feathers on legs that should be clean and no feathers on legs that should have them, vulture hocks, split wing, wry tail, etc. The list goes on. These are MAJOR problems. Birds with these problems generally shouldn't be used in any breeding program. Faults (aka. defects) include feather (colour) problems, weight, shape, eye colour, etc.

    DQs are usually not breed specific (not always. There are exceptions.) DQ means the bird carries qualities that the APA doesn't want to see promoted in a particular type/breed of chicken. In other words, that bird doesn't have a place in the show room - and, most likely, in the breeding pen. But as I said above, not all show birds are good breeders. That can also work the other way around. Sometimes, a DQ fault can be overlooked if the particular bird is strong in other areas. That is where experience comes into play - strict breeding practices and record keeping.
  7. BarnGoddess01

    BarnGoddess01 I [IMG]emojione/assets/png/2665.png?v=2.2.7[/IMG]

    The APA judges interpret the breed descriptions and APA general guidelines. They don't make decisions about whether or not it is a particular breed or not - only if the bird before them on the day meets the written breed description. If they do, they're good to go. If not, depends how bad the problems are.
  8. BarnGoddess01

    BarnGoddess01 I [IMG]emojione/assets/png/2665.png?v=2.2.7[/IMG]

    Troy asked me to clarify his comments on vaccination. When he suggested vaccinations are only necessary if you have a problem, he was referring specifically to Marek's. Troy says the following: "I am a firm believer in ILT vaccination. It runs in our area especially in the fall months ... and can be devasting. Mareks, Coryza and many other vaccinations are optional IMO ... but I feel ILT is manditory if you are in Canada and many northern states where is it known to be present."

    Thank you for the clarification, Troy!! And thank you again for conducting that seminar for us.
  9. 3riverschick

    3riverschick Poultry Lit Chaser

    May 19, 2009
    western PA
    My Coop
    What's ILT?
  10. BarnGoddess01

    BarnGoddess01 I [IMG]emojione/assets/png/2665.png?v=2.2.7[/IMG]

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