Turkeys - 4H project 2016

Discussion in 'Exhibition, Genetics, & Breeding to the Standard o' started by SuperD, Jan 6, 2016.

  1. SuperD

    SuperD New Egg

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    Jan 6, 2016
    My daughter has shown other livestock projects the last couple years. She wants to take Turkeys (market) as a project for 2016. We know we need to start off with good genetics. My question is where can I find a breeder that sales show quality poults? I assume that buying from a hatchery, your just getting the run of the mill poults, not show quality poults. Looking for some insight.

    Thank you!!
     
  2. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    I'm not familiar with show quality, I would inquire at you local 4h, or whoever sponsors the shows. I personally have gotten my turkeys through Porters, he has many varieties, but I'm unsure if they are show quality, you could email him and ask, good luck.
     
  3. SmokingPistol

    SmokingPistol Out Of The Brooder

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    May 14, 2012
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    Former 4-Her and now leader here!

    Market turkeys are broad breasted whites that come from hatcheries. Currently Ideal hatchery is in style for my county but there are many others. Make sure to order in plenty of time and pay attention to age and weight restrictions through your fair.
     
  4. Sydney Acres

    Sydney Acres Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Be sure to find out exactly what category she wants to show in. If she's shown purebred livestock in the past, then she should be familiar with the concept of breed standards. However, if she wants to show "market" birds, that's a whole different concept. There's no "breed" standard because the market birds aren't purebreds. They're hybrids that have one purpose only -- rapid production of meat. So the size, weight, appropriate fattening without being obese, overall health (hopefully), and some level of presentation is what will be judged. To find the best source of commercial turkeys, I would find out who has won the last several shows and ask them where they got their birds. If you've never grown market birds, you might ask them if they would be willing to share their management plan with you, assuming that they won't be a current competitor.

    The purebred heritage turkeys are a different category, as they will be judged by the SOP. Porter's or a private breeder would be your best place to start if that's the direction she wants to go. Porter's has lots of non-SOP colors, which can't be shown at some shows, so be sure to consult the SOP before choosing a breed. If she's going in that direction, I would call Porter's and ask them which breed they have that most closely meets the SOP.
     
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2016

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