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Show chicken cost

Discussion in 'Exhibition, Genetics, & Breeding to the Standard o' started by brbg7, Sep 16, 2015.

  1. brbg7

    brbg7 Out Of The Brooder

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    New to the show chicken world and just out of curiosity how much does a chicken cost to be competitive on a state level or on a national level. They can be any breed or sex just has to be top of the line stock.
     
  2. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    [COLOR=rgb(7.840000%, 9.410000%, 13.700000%)]FIFTEEN THINGS YOU MUST DO TO BECOME A GOOD CHICKEN BREEDER
    As posted on the Marans of USA facebook page.
    By: Rip Stalvey [/COLOR]

    [COLOR=rgb(7.840000%, 9.410000%, 13.700000%)]Wow, I have a half day off...I'm almost giddy with excitement. So I thought I would do something I haven't been able to do for a while; write a post.
    I was thinking some about what I would tell someone who asked me what they should do to become a good chicken breeder. So here's my list.
    1. Study the APA Standard of Perfection. Not just about your chosen breed either. The first thirty or so pages contain great information. Plus learning about other breeds will be invaluable to you.
    2. Be honest with yourself. Don't suffer from coop blindness and fool yourself into thinking your birds are better than they are. Not being able to see the faults in your own birds is another issue.
    3. Find a mentor. Good mentors are hard to find but worth their weight in gold. Look for someone that's been breeding birds at least fifteen years. Then follow their advice!
    4. Keep your line pure. Crossing two different lines is the fastest way to fail that I know of. If you feel you need new blood get an unrelated bird from the same line you're working with. Always introduce new blood by using a female rather than a male...your results will be better over the long term.
    5. Know where you want to go with your breeding. What needs to be fixed about your birds? What is your primary focus; type, color pattern, or egg color. Don't try to fix too many things at one time.
    6. Build from a solid foundation. Get the very best birds you can lay your hands on. That way you be light years ahead of many. Re-read numbers 1 and 4.
    7. Remember the rule of tens. For every ten chicks you raise usually only one will be good enough to keep. For every 100 chicks raised count on ten being good enough to keep. Never keep a bird that won't move your program forward.
    8. Cull your birds rigorously. The tendency is for most people is to keep too many birds. Don't do it as it will only set you back! Re-read number seven.
    9. Limit your numbers. Only hatch as many chicks as you can adequately care for. Chicks reared in crowed conditions never reach their full potential. If you have space for 50, hatch 40.
    10. Keep really good “forever” records. Document every thing...matings, results, egg color, growth rate, vigor, etc. This will document your progress and guide your future. Hang on to these records for dear life.
    11. If you're in it for the money you won't succeed. Sadly there are too many folks that are out to make a quick buck. Typically their birds are pretty inferior representatives of the breed.
    12. Breed from Cocks and Hens. When you do this you're dealing with a known quantity. It's a case of what you see is what you've got. Cockerels and pullets will change a lot as they full mature.
    13. Support the APA and the breed club. Become an active member in both. These are the organizations working
    to improve the hobby and the breeds.
    14. Accept responsibility for your birds. It's not right to blame your line's creator for the faults in your flock. Once you acquire your start and begin breeding them they are your line not theirs.
    15. Share your knowledge. Never be afraid to share what you've learned with others. Many old time breeder I knew were quick to help a new comer. We don't see much of that anymore and that's a shame because too much knowledge has been lost. [/COLOR]
     
    7 people like this.
  3. BantamFan4Life

    BantamFan4Life Water Under the Bridge Premium Member

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    Show chickens usually cost about 5-15 dollars a chick...but if you are wanting one to win at national shows, you could order from an extremely good breeder and buy birds for a fortune...but you really can't get a bird that will "always win."
     
  4. waddles99

    waddles99 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    One thing I learned is never assume a chick will be a show winner just because of where it comes from. Just because it comes from show stock isn't a guarantee it will win. Decent quality show chicks come around $10-20, but you can't really tell for sure until they get older. But obviously the chances are greater if they come from show stock.
     
  5. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    The point of exhibiting, really, is for the breeders to show their artwork. I personally know breeders whose monthly feed bill is over $2000.
    While there is the occasion exception, one doesn't "buy" a highly competitve bird for exhibiting competitively, one makes them. Most top breeders hatch 100 or 200 chicks from their top matings in hopes of finding a single chick that might, might place highly in the better shows.

    If one is interested in the fancy, the hobby of breeding and exhibiting fine birds, then plug into the network of the breed of your choice. Attend many of the top exhibitions in your region. Yes, there is the high cost of travel, food and motels. Really get to know those who exhibit in the breed(s) of your choosing. You'll find most folks are extremely friendly and open to talking about their birds.

    Arrive early and watch the check in, the cooping in process and note the converstations that take place among groups of people. Watch the judge moving in the aisles. (the aisle the judge is working in with her/his clerk is blocked off to prevent disruption.

    Be sure you understand the difference between shows, ie, small county fairs where all kind of birds are entered and the judges may not be licensed at all and the whole exhibit is largely to enjoy for both fair attendees and participants. But, an APA or ABA sanctioned show is whole 'nother universe. The latter are vastly different affairs, as is the stock shown, the judging and level of quality.

    Buying a bird in hopes of being highly competitive is a pipe dream and that thought is best abandoned for the real life nature of this hobby.
     
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2015
    6 people like this.
  6. enola

    enola Overrun With Chickens

    I know horse showing and chicken showing are completely different, but be prepared to spend a LARGE fortune working your way up the ranks. It takes lots of hard work, lots of time, and lots of money. Nobody starts at the top......
     
  7. brbg7

    brbg7 Out Of The Brooder

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    I probably won't show chickens anytime soon as my cattle and goat shows keep me busy most of the year. Just curious about their prices. I know cattle that are competitive are worth tens of thousands and goats are a couple thousand. I just figured chickens would be like $200 or so. I never knew chicken breeders made 100s of chick's to pick one winner. Like Enola said the chicken world is very different.
     
  8. 3riverschick

    3riverschick Poultry Lit Chaser

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    My Coop
    Nice way to discourage the newbie, guys. We all know that selection is the key. To find a breed we love. Then find the top 2 breeders who win consistently over multiple years in hot competition. Then buy started birds out of their best breeding pens. Yeah, it will cost 50.-100. a bird. (No eggs. just chicks or (better) started birds as they will have been culled for quality at least once by the breeder. Stay away from rare breeds or breeds with a very small gene pool or complicated colors. Stay away from the 3 most popular breeds as the competition can get too hot.
    Study the breed you choose and be able to discuss it intelligently with your chosen breeder. Know the history and past and esp. current breeding challenges in the breed. Explain you would like to line breed their strain and do not wish to strain-cross to found your flock. I know we do that in mammals but in poultry it is different. Find a vintage linebred strain which wins in top competition over multiple years. Get a quad ( 2M.2F). Explain to the breeder you want to linebreed and could he choose birds for you with that in mind. Spare no expense for your foundation trio. Then linebreed, following the breeders counsel for the next 2 generations, until you get t to know the strain.
    Best,
    Karen
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2015
    1 person likes this.
  9. Sonoran Silkies

    Sonoran Silkies Flock Mistress

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    Cost also depends on breed; some breeds are generally less or more expensive than others. Paying a couple of hundred dollars or more for a chicken is certainly common, but not for chicks. For that matter, many breeders will not sell chicks or eggs, just growouts or older birds, and that is after they have selected which ones they are keeping for themselves.
     
  10. chicken111324

    chicken111324 Out Of The Brooder

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    you can get good stock for around $50
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2015

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