Silver Penciled Rock cockerels - help me choose between these 2

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by Wynette, Jan 21, 2013.

  1. Blue

    3 vote(s)
    37.5%
  2. Purple

    4 vote(s)
    50.0%
  3. I have a much nicer type (and VERY LARGE) male that I'm willing to ship to you. [ Provide user name

    1 vote(s)
    12.5%
  1. Wynette

    Wynette Moderator Staff Member

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    Hi, folks - those of you who know me know that I've been working with Silver Penciled Plymouth Rocks for several years now. My biggest issue with my flock (and there are many) is size - they're not large enough.

    I held back 4 cockerels from a fall breeding (they are both 21 weeks in these pictures); the two largest sprouted side sprigs (wouldn't you know it - they are a full pound and a quarter heavier than the smaller two). The two remaining cockerels each have good and bad things about them, and I just can't make up my mind. They are within 1 ounce of each other in weight. I have them marked as "blue" and "purple" according to their leg bands. Please help me choose the best one. Details on why you chose the one you did are welcomed!

    (of note regarding the pictures - I was fussing with the digital camera settings; some of the pictures make them appear as if they have gold leakage, but neither actually do.)

    Blue cockerel - 5# 11 oz.

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    Purple cockerel - 5# 10 oz.


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    The blue cockerel does have a wave in the front of his comb. The purple cockerel is much feistier than the blue is. And, I have found the males to be "lazy" breeders in this pen, so I like a feisty one for the sires. But most definitely not to the point that I'd make a cull decision based simply on that.

    Many thanks for ALL feedback!
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2013
  2. BarnGoddess01

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

    As you well know, I am not a Rock person but my immediate impression on seeing your photos absolutely mirrors your comments above. From pictures, I prefer Mr. Blue. He looks more "balanced" to my eye at this early stage.

    I really look forward to hearing what those who know their way around a rock have to say.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 25, 2013
  3. Frizzle13

    Frizzle13 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Blue one looks a better shape
     
  4. BarnGoddess01

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

    I also want to add, in my oh so limited experience, I actually prefer the not so feisty boys. I think they are kinder to the ladies (and themselves) and me, and I seem to end up with just as many fertile eggs.
     
  5. Wynette

    Wynette Moderator Staff Member

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    How old is your oldest male, though? My SPR cock bird is 5 and seems wholly uninterested in breeding at all. I incubated (both with broody and incubator) almost every egg laid in that pen last year, and only 4 hatched. I then began watching him very closely and even did some experimenting. I put a female from another pen in (he should have quite literally been all over her), and he strutted a but, but never attempted to mate her, and all her eggs were checked unfertile. Also, I removed him for a full week, left him alone in a breeder cage and then put him back in...same thing. Maybe it's just the breed, or this particular individual, but from what I have learned, 5 is just beginning to be "too old" - perhaps, I'm just unlucky, which could very well be!
     
  6. BarnGoddess01

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

     
  7. Wynette

    Wynette Moderator Staff Member

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    I've heard of folks using them with good results up to 7 yrs., but I suspect those males are not the norm. I may try AI with my old male this spring. But, this is the reason I'm looking to choose a new cockerel.
     
  8. snowbird

    snowbird Overrun With Chickens

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    Wynette, from what I can see I like the Purple male best. I like his tail set and his overall color. Remember to increase the size look to the females and make sure and weigh them to be accurate, Only use the female with the weight and overall Rock type. if you have female with bad combs try and not use them as this is where the bad combs in the young will come from,
     
  9. Wynette

    Wynette Moderator Staff Member

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    Here's another opinion from a fellow Plymouth Rock breeder:

    I like the purple cockerel best.
    In my opinion, he:
    1. Appears to have much more growing to do....seems to have a larger frame, still looks like a "gangly teenager" right now, but I think he has a lot of growing/filling out to do
    2. I like his length of back
    3. I prefer his tail although my Rocks are 10+ months before I can get a good read on tails
    4. First bird appears to carry a "V" shape in his underline, Mr Purple isn't "perfect" but seems to carry more curve (could be the pictures)


    Lastly, if Mr Purple is a bit more fiesty....can't be all bad for fertility issues. Heads to me are about a toss up. If you are looking for improved SIZE, I think #2 is your man.
     
  10. Wynette

    Wynette Moderator Staff Member

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    Thanks, Don, for the opinion - I was just getting ready to PM you & ask you to pop in & have a look yesterday when you posted!
     

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