Which (if any) of the National Hatchery's Sell Show Quality Chicks?

Discussion in 'Chicken Breeders & Hatcheries' started by Bantam Lover 2020, Jan 24, 2019.

  1. Bantam Lover 2020

    Bantam Lover 2020 Chirping

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    Hello,

    I've been thumbing through my new Welp brochure and they mention breeding towards the Standard. This got me thinking: Is it possible to order from any of the national hatchery's and end up with chickens that are Show Quality?

    Or is that a Dreamer's Fantasy?

    Thank you!
     
  2. Criticalicious

    Criticalicious Songster

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    Hatchery birds in general will not be show quality. For show quality, you are better off contacting individual breeders who specialize in a particular breed and whose birds win shows. Some people often sell adults after shows, and that's one place to start. Hatchery birds might be bred over time to show quality, but you are going to need to do a lot of culling. I've read estimates of 80-90% culled birds.
     
  3. What particular breed(s) are you looking for as that can help people direct you to individual breeders or smaller hatcheries that do indeed develop high quality chickens.
     
  4. Bantam Lover 2020

    Bantam Lover 2020 Chirping

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    Just a general question at the moment. We are a few years away from owning our chickens, but I wanted to do some Research on where we should get our chickens.

    If we want Show Quality then it is Best to avoid the large Hatchery's all together and simply purchase from local breeders?

    Thank you.
     
  5. Cyprus

    Cyprus Master of the 'never give up' attitude

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    Yeah pretty much. Breeders selling birds will have higher prices, and probably straight run, but they should be good quality.
     
  6. Frazzemrat1

    Frazzemrat1 Free Ranging

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    And you don't even have to go with 'local' breeders. There are some breeders who sell their eggs, or even chicks, online. Greenfire, for instance, is a well recognized breeder with what I understand to be high quality birds.
    That is, if you're in the US. You don't have your location listed on your profile.
     
  7. Criticalicious

    Criticalicious Songster

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    You can still have great quality birds without them being "show quality." Show quality means they are bred to look a certain way, similar to how people breed dogs for shows. This kind of goal requires commitment and the means to keep birds isolated to control who breeds with who and when. You have to be willing to cull the majority of what you hatch - whether to freezer camp, a general flock, or finding them other homes.

    I would say the majority of backyard chicken keepers want eggs and entertainment, and beginners should probably start there and then work up to shows, unless you're involved with a local 4-H kind of project.
     
  8. Cyprus

    Cyprus Master of the 'never give up' attitude

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    I will chime in here for a min

    My current stock came from pursuing an exhibitor at a local fair. I wanted what he had, he didn't have any at the time. I got his contact info and eventually the opportunity came up to help him out and get free chicks in return. His stock is the best around.

    So maybe seek out local exhibitors and get their info, then casually offer something like incubating overflow eggs and see what comes of it.
     
  9. HenHouse4Life

    HenHouse4Life GrandmaOnDuty

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    What breeds are you considering?
     
  10. Bantam Lover 2020

    Bantam Lover 2020 Chirping

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    Silkies, of course. Mostly the breeds of Standard size chickens that will lay a best full of colored eggs like my avatar. I've got a Huge list of the necessary breeds.

    My personal preference would be for Bantams as I had Those as a child; I completely and utterly LOVED my Banties even my two floaters were as sweet adults as they were when they were tiny chicks.

    But I've been hearing that Bantams won't lay such a wide shade of eggs. Perhaps from a Breeder they could/ would?

    Crossing Ameraucana chickens with Silkies makes for a beautiful looking chicken, and although I want to start with mostly a flock of egg laying hens, I would not be opposed to getting a rooster of either breed to have the ability to cross these two breeds together.
     

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