What Does "Heritage" Mean?

Discussion in 'What Breed Or Gender is This?' started by MesMama, Feb 29, 2016.

  1. MesMama

    MesMama Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sorry if this is the wrong place to post this, I wasn't sure where to put it ;)

    I ran across the term heritage breed and my mom and I were talking about it, I did a search on the forums but couldn't find anything that covered it. We're thinking it means that they aren't purebred, but a breed that has been "made" or whatever the term is lol! So it's not an original breed, like heirloom seeds?

    What does it mean and which breeds are heritage breeds? Thanks so much!! [​IMG]
     
  2. nchls school

    nchls school Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I believe that the tern heritage is used for those breeds that are old, tradiional; have been around for a long time.
     
  3. Egghead_Jr

    Egghead_Jr Overrun With Chickens

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    Like "heritage" seeds for your garden all it means is it's the pure strain, not crossed with any other and will pollenate/breed true.

    For the most part hatcheries can not really say "heritage". But then it could be construed as "old" breed and not standard bred. A pure (not crossed with other breeds) standard bred bird like from reputable breeders is exactly like heritage seeds for your garden. The traditional term in poultry is standard bred.
     
  4. MesMama

    MesMama Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Okay so if you get a breed that isn't considered heritage, what will you get when you hatch their eggs out? For example-Marans aren't a heritage breed from what I understand, so even if you have a Maran rooster, the eggs could be random, not necessarily what the patents are? Does that even make sense? Lol!
     
    Last edited: Feb 29, 2016
  5. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    Typically, heritage breed chickens are birds that have been bred to meet the traditional standard for that particular breed. Most breeders use the term heritage bred to indicate that their stock are not the typical, poor quality hatchery birds; but true examples of the breed.

    One of the best examples to use is Rhode Island Reds. Hatchery RIRs look like big, red Leghorns. They are the wrong shape, and they are rarely the right shade of deep red.
    Heritage Rhode Island Reds have a different build to them and a deep, rich red color.
     
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  6. Torch404

    Torch404 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If you hatch Heritage chickens you will end up with the same breed. You could think of them as pure breed dogs that have a long familial history of the same traits.

    Your "standard breed" hatchery bird will usually breed true, occasionally you might get an odd ball though because 5 generations (or however long) back they introduced another breed into the bloodline to strengthen a trait.
    So say the birds they were making looked right but were not laying enough eggs, so they add a similar, but different, breed with good laying trait. Then they breed back for the correct look with egg laying trait. Hatcheries are also less able/inclined to hatch for birds that match the SOP, so you will usually get a mostly correct bird.
     
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  7. MesMama

    MesMama Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Are the birds from McMurray a good quality?

    Also, they don't carry Black Copper Marans (as an example) does anyone know why?
     
  8. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    McMurray is not known for birds that are 'standard' bred. If you want stunning, show quality birds then don't buy from a hatchery. If you want sexed pullets that sort of resemble their breed and will be great layers, than hatchery quality is just fine.

    Marans are still a relatively new breed in the U.S. Only a few hatcheries have been willing to spend the money to obtain Marans stock. Ideal and Murray McMurray have Cuckoo Marans, but they don't lay the dark eggs the breed is known for. Meyer has good Marans in a few varieties. Cackle has the most varieties and they are one of the only big hatcheries that actually tries to breed their birds to meet standard.
     
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  9. MesMama

    MesMama Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks everyone! Very informative :D
     
  10. Chris09

    Chris09 Circle (M) Ranch

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    It depends on who you talk too.
    Some people go by the livestock conservancy definition which is in short --
    APA Standard Breed
    Naturally mating
    Long, productive outdoor lifespan
    Slow growth rate


    http://www.livestockconservancy.org/index.php/heritage/internal/heritage-chicken

    Now some breeders myself included think that the livestock conservancy definition
    is a crock and a very poor definition for the term heritage. There ( the livestock conservancy ) definition leaves out a lot of old breeds just because they are not or were not in the APA by a set date which is prior to the mid-20th century.
     
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