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Messages - Paul

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  Over 20 years ago I came up with a numbering system to punch the bird’s webs that was easy to remember.  The method was created using the same plan as notches in the hogs ears.  Later I was told about the APA number code for toe punches-which is the same as what I came up with.  Its easy to remember as we read left to right-start with the bird’s left outside web being one, (move to the right) left inside web is two.  Continue moving to the right to the bird’s right inside web being 4, then to the right for the outside web being 8.  The numbers 1, 2, 4 and 8 doubled each time they were moved to the right.  These four numbers are used in combinations to make 1 to 15.  Example:  Both webs on the left foot make three.  Seven is marked by a four (right inside web) and both webs on the left foot.  Fifteen is all four webs.

  Several years ago we came up with a plus system due to having more than 15 pens of black, blue, splash.  The plus system uses slits in place of the holes.  A hole is punched then slit open with a single sided razor blade.  This allows an additional fifteen pens.

  We experimented with a V system, but did not like it.  It used a V cut into the webs which was difficult to distinguish from the slits from the plus numbers.

  A marking system is very important to be able to track a bird’s ancestors, and know how the birds are related to each other.

  Once you decide to toe punch your chicks you will need a toe punch.  We have worn out several sets punching at least 30 thousand chicks the past twenty-three years.  We recently purchased one of the new style with a lever on it.  Jan. 8 will be my first time to use it.  When using the old style, make sure the spike is pointed up so you can see that the round hole of the web is completely removed.  If it isn’t completely removed it will grow back and not leave a hole.

  If you are hatching in a small incubator that doesn’t have space for sectioning off the different breeding pens, eggs can be tied in a pantyhose just before hatching to keep the chicks separated until they are toe punched.

  Paul Smith

Exhibiting & Promoting / Re: Exhibitor Points
« on: December 08, 2017, 02:21:44 PM »
  The champion Ameraucana from the large fowl verses the bantam should only be awarded at the ABC national or the five district meets.

News and Information / Re: Dixie Classic
« on: December 08, 2017, 09:34:11 AM »
  Normally I visit with the exhibitor and find out if they are showing purchased chicks.  I didn’t get a chance to visit with Lindsay and assumed they were from the boxes of chicks that we sent in 2016, April 10, 2017 and May 23, 2017.  The blue wheaten pullet has a slit in her left inside web which would be a # + 2 bw.  I didn’t check the self blue hen or pullet as they look just like our # +12 Sb, which we sent several.  I had Angela correct this.  It will not happen again.

  I don’t have a problem with someone showing birds from us or someone else!  We all had to get them from someone.  We did the same thing nineteen years ago when we started, also showed buff last year from Christine & Will Kitsch.  There will come a day when I won’t be able to make the long trips due to leg cramps.  Then the sold birds will be all that can be shown from us.  I see it a win for both the one who showed them and the one who produced/bred them.  While at the Dixie Classic we had the opportunity to meet Jack Cushenberry who purchased a box of chicks from us and won champion large fowl at the Kentucky State Fair on a black pullet.  Those on Facebook may want to check out Jack’s Happy Hens.  Its reports like this, that make it all worth doing.  I’ve tried to express that I don’t have a problem with anyone showing birds bred by someone-else.  What I do have a problem with is an older couple that I know, who have spent most of their life raising and breeding a breed of bantams (not Ameraucanas), won numerous awards and NEVER sold any due to the fact, that they don’t want to show against their own.

  Paul Smith

News and Information / Re: Dixie Classic
« on: December 07, 2017, 03:08:36 PM »
  The ABC had the show of shows at the Dixie Classic in Knoxville, TN. on Dec. 2 & 3, 2017.  History was made with the success of the second pre-qualifying meet for the 4-4-4-4 self blue.  It made my day to here judge Brian Knox answer my question, “Can you recommend the self blue?  While signing the paper work, Brian answered “Yes, overall the self blue were very good.  They need to be in the book.”

  Twelve ABC members and two non-members from 11 states and Canada showed 95 large fowl and 31 bantams in the open show.  Terry Britt judged the bantams.  Six blacks were shown with Jeff & Cheryl Vance winning BV, and RB on a cockerel and RV on a pullet.  Jeff & Cheryl showed one blue cockerel into BV.  Jeff & Cheryl showed two buff pullets into BV & RV.  One of these was my pick for the top two bantams.  Jeff told me she was busy laying an egg while being judged, which caused her to be RV and out of the running for BB or RB, unless the BV buff had been chosen to be BB.  Jeff & Cheryl showed one brown red cockerel into BV, and one white cockerel into BV.  Five silvers were shown with Maggie Maier winning BV and RV on two pullets.  Fifteen wheatens were shown with Robert Bridges winning BV, BB and RV on two pullets.  Blue wheaten was the only missing recognized variety having all eight at this show!  The Ameraucana bantams are gaining both numbers and quality in the SC and SE districts.

  Unfortunately no Junior bantams were shown, due to the illness of the Junior ABC member who had some entered but was unable to attend.

  Brian Knox judged the large fowl.  Four ABC members showed nine blues with Susan Mouw winning BV on a pullet and RV on a cockerel.  Six blue wheaten were shown by 3 ABC members with Pat Dukes winning BV on a pullet purchased from Susan Mouw.  The RV was shown by Lindsay Helton on a pullet purchased from Susan Mouw.

  Three buff purchased from Jeff & Cheryl Vance were shown by Lindsay Helton.  Lindsay’s cockerel won BV and pullet RV.  Five whites were shown by 3 ABC members.  Lindsay Helton won BV on a hen.  Sherry Klaus won RV on a pullet purchased from Paul & Angela Smith.  Five wheaten were shown by 3 ABC members.  Paul & Angela Smith won BV on a pullet.  Pat Dukes won RV on a pullet purchased as a chick from Paul & Angela.  Two splash were shown.  Susan Mouw won BV on a cockerel and Pat Dukes won RV on a pullet from chicks purchased from Paul & Angela.  A pair of mottled were shown by Sara Knight.  Sara’s pullet won BV and Res. AOV (any other variety).  Sara’s cockerel won RV.  Six ABC members, Barbara Dodington, Pat Dukes, Lindsay Helton, Paul & Angela Smith, Sherry Klaus and Holly McDonnell (listed by exhibitor number) exhibited 5 cocks, 8 hens, 6 cockerels and 6 pullets for a total of 25 self blues which surpassed the required 4-4-4-4 sixteen head!  Lindsay Helton won BV on a hen and RV on a pullet.  Lindsay’s hen won Best AOV.  The splash, mottled and self blue competed for the AOV honors.  Soon we will see the self blue out of the AOV status and a recognized variety, competing with the 8 recognized varieties of Ameraucanas for BB and RB.  In the near future I will contact Walt Leonard to confirm the ABC’s next step, which should be a qualifying meet at a national APA show, which is set for Shawnee, OK. on November 17 and 18, 2018.  This is a special show, not the Oklahoma State Poultry Federation Show which will be held Dec. 8, 2018.  I’ll confirm this ASAP after I know for sure!

  Eight exhibitors showed 38 blacks-one cock, two hens, 14 cockerels and 21 pullets.  M & J Farm (Jan Geis) won BV, BB and Best AOSB on a cockerel.  Tom Kernan won RV and RB on a pullet.  Terry Britt and I were visiting after the show about how popular the Ameraucanas have become.  They have grown from a few hid in the corner of the show room shown by Angela & I to several aisles.  All of the open show blacks shown at this show should be able to trace their roots to us, which all go back to Wayne Meredith’s, who is credited for developing the black large fowl Ameraucanas.

  Four black large fowl were shown by 3 juniors with Gwyneth Lynch winning BV, BB and Best AOSB on a hen.  Addison Bryles won RV on a pullet.  Gwyneth Lynch showed one white cock which won BV, and RB for a total of 5 juniors large fowl which made the total of 131 Ameraucanas shown.

  It was great to see all the new fanciers involved in breeding and showing Ameraucanas!  We enjoyed meeting, showing with, and getting to know each of them!  Several purchased their start of Ameraucana chicks from us.

  Paul Smith

  PS.  Photos of all the BV and RV will be posted ASAP.  They have to be downloaded, cropped and downsized to fit on the forum.

Hi Ernie,

  Glad we are finally going to get to see you. 
  Are you going to Haynesville, Louisiana this week end?


  A penny for your thoughts!  LOL!  I'll pay you when we get to show together-maybe at Shawnee on Dec. 9?

  He looks great!  I agree with your assessment.  From the grayed out photo his wings are not visible to access the carriage or tips.  Cockerels raised in hot regions will have larger combs than cockerels raised where it is cooler and doesn't stay hot for long periods of time.  A few years ago we only missed a day or two seeing 100 or above for 100 consecutive days.

  I don’t see color (variety) as being the error.  The large fowl Black Ameraucanas win more shows than the 7 other varieties combine!  Nineteen years of showing, we have had one blue wheaten hen, one wheaten cockerel, one wheaten pullet, one blue hen, and one white cockerel to win BB, and too many blacks to count-(never less to remember), win BB.  In my opinion the error is type.  Unfortunately, most of the blacks that have been winning BB the past few years don’t align with the Standard of Perfection.  Most are extremely over sized.  When an Ameraucana cockerel requires a double coop-he is too large framed.  Most are too low at the point of their shoulders making them level backed rather than having a sloped back.  Most are very loose feathered making them a term that I call fluffy.  However they have a lot of eye appeal and are very pretty, so they win.  I’ve set on the sidelines until now.  The straw that broke the camel’s back was what Clif showed me on Facebook while at Fayetteville.  Someone posted a couple photos of blue cockerels and requested critiques, so they would know which one to use on their pullets.  Someone answered that they didn’t like them because they had slope to their back.  Apparently the one responding must have seen too many of the level back incorrect winners.  Granted the two blue cockerels had much more slope than what the Standard of Perfection requires.  However that is what is going to be needed to get some of the level ones back on track.  Most likely the photos showed the two blue cockerels in an excited pose, which will cause them to be more elevated than what they actually are.

  Paul Smith

  Sorry this is so late-been swamped in work since the Fayetteville shows.  Normally I try to write the reports on the way home but I was either driving or asleep.

  The South Central district held it’s annual district meet in Fayetteville, Arkansas at the Heart of the Ozarks (HOTO) poultry show on November 4 and 5, 2017.  Seven ABC members from 4 states exhibited 36 large fowl and 9 bantams in the open show.  Four junior showed 4 large fowl and 4 bantams for a total of 53 Ameraucanas.

  Brad Stonebarger of Triple S farm showed 9 brown red bantams in the open show judged by Paul Monteith of Canada, with two cockerels winning BV, RV, BB and RB.  It was great to learn that Brad is breeding brown red bantams.  Keirsten Klaus showed 3 wheaten and 1 blue wheaten bantams in the junior show which was judged by Steven Beaty of New Mexico., Keirsten’s wheaten cockerel won BV, BB and Res. AOCCL.  One of her wheaten pullets won RV and RB.  Keirsten has a very good start purchased from Jeff and Cheryl Vance.  Ameraucana bantams are getting good starts in the SC district now, with several ABC members breeding them.  There will be an increase of Ameraucana bantams in the SC district shows as they come more available.

  Four large fowl black Ameraucanas were shown by 3 Juniors with Steven Beaty selecting a cockerel shown by Adrian Stripe for BV and BB and Jackson Moore’s hen RV and RB.

  Three large fowl blues were shown in the open show.  Paul & Angela Smith won BV on a pullet and Clif Redden won RV on a pullet.  Four blue wheatens were shown with Ann Horsman winning BV on a cock and RV on a hen, from chicks purchased two years ago from Paul & Angela Smith.  Two wheatens were shown with Ann Horsman winning BV on a hen and Paul & Angela Smith RV on a pullet.  One buff cockerel was shown into BV by Paul & Angela Smith.  Two self blues were shown by Paul & Angela with their cockerel placing BV and pullet RV.  Six whites were shown with Paul & Angela winning BV on a cockerel.  Sherry Klaus won RV on a pullet purchased from Paul & Angela.  One splash cockerel was shown by Clif Redden.  Clif’s splash cockerel won best AOV over the self blue cockerel.  The splash variety will soon start the long process of becoming a recognized variety of Ameraucanas.  The ABC second pre-qualifying meet for the self blue is scheduled for the Dixie Classic in Knoxville, TN on Dec. 2 & 3, 2017.  I have several Texas self blue breeders prepared for a second and last chance to meet the 4-4-4-4 second pre-qualifying meet before the deadline in January 2018.  We should be able to meet the requirements at the Knoxville show.  However, if the weather and roads get bad, it could cause a failed attempt to have the required numbers.  The Bluebonnet Classic at College Station, TX. Entry deadline is after the Knoxville, TN. Show, so it provides a second chance to have a 4-4-4-4 pre-qualifying meet.  We had our first pre-qualifying meet in Shawnee, OK on Dec. 10, 2016.  Shawnee’s entries are closed, so it is not available to enter the required numbers.  The four exhibitors that meet the pre-qualifying meet were all from Texas.  Texas has only closed poultry shows, not allowing out of state birds due to Texas Animal Health regulations.  Unfortunately this will not allow anyone out of Texas to help with the pre-qualifying meet.  We are planning on taking 7 head of self blues to Knoxville to help with the pre-qualifying meet.

  Blacks were the largest class with 17 shown.  Jan Geis of M & J Farm won BV, BB, Champion large fowl and Champion Ameraucana on a cockerel.  Jan also won RV, RB and Res. Ameraucana on a cockerel.

  The SC district managed to have a good show even though it had to compete with a homecoming football game and another show in the district on the same weekend.  Just for the record, hotel rooms which had not been pre-booked, were available in Fayetteville for the weekend.  Most ABC members who showed went to the Golden Corral for dinner.  We did not hold a formal district meeting to select a show for our 2018 district meet.  I had planned for a meeting to select a back-up show in the event Larry Clionski chose the APA national meet in Shawnee, OK. on November 17 & 18, 2018 to be our ABC national.  Having received word that our national ABC meet will be in Greenville, Ohio at the Dayton show, our South Central district meet will be at the APA national meet in Shawnee, OK.  This should be our first qualifying meet for the large fowl self blue, as the qualifying meets are assigned to an APA national or semi-annual meet!

  Amanda Stallman of California judged the ABC club meet at Fayetteville, Arkansas on Nov. 4 & 5, 2017.  The open show is judged twice at the HOTO show.  The Juniors are busy with showmanship so their birds are only shown once.

  Paul & Angela Smith won BV on a blue cockerel and Clif Redden RV on a blue pullet.  Ann Horsman won BV on a blue wheaten cock and Paul & Angela RV on a blue wheaten pullet.  The wheaten class remained the same with Ann Horsman winning BV on a hen and Paul & Angela RV on a pullet.  The buff and self blues also remained the same.  Surprisingly both Amanda and Paul Monteith chose the self blue cockerel over the self blue pullet.  Sherry Klaus won BV and RV on white pullets.  Clif Redden won Best AOV with his splash cockerel.  Jan Geis’s black cockerel won BV, BB and Res. large fowl.  This was the same cockerel that won reserve breed under Paul Monteith’s judgement.  The RV black and RB was a pullet shown by Brad Stonebarger of Triple S Farm.  Amanda selected the same brown red cockerel for BV and BB in the bantams but chose a pullet for RV and RB.

  The double judged shows are fun to see the difference in judge’s opinions and their interpretation of the APA Standard of Perfection (SOP).  The past few years we have been seeing judges use Ameraucanas that are much larger framed (oversized), level backed rather than taller at the shoulders, loose feathered to the point that they are fluffy.  We as Ameraucana breeders must get back to the SOP or we will have our Ameraucana breed in the same situation as the Berkshire hogs are now, where they have either the old time Berks or the new modern Berks with lots of white due to crossing with other breeds.  We need to encourage each other to select our breeding birds as close as possible to the SOP!  I had two ABC members ask what can be done to get the varieties other than black to win?  My response was I don’t know.  After a few days of thinking-the answer came.  We as Ameraucana breeders must go back to the SOP and start breeding and showing the correct body type.  Then start educating the judges, and everyone involved with Ameraucanas.

  Most of the blacks at Fayetteville, were extremely different from the other varieties shown.  After the judging of the second show was completed, while recording the results the clerk and judge Amanda Stallman came to me and ask if the ABC needed any other selections-(meaning Champion Ameraucana), which we didn’t since the second show judged by Paul Monteith was our SC district meet.  The Champion Ameraucana only needs to be selected from a district and national meet.  As we were walking by the black pullets-Amanda said “They are like Orphingtons with muffs and beards!”  Ouch-I missed an open door to start the Ameraucana breed back on the right road, according to the SOP.

  I thought the selection of BB that didn’t align with the SOP would correct itself in due time.  A few years ago Max and I thoroughly discussed type.  Max being relative new to the Ameraucana breed at that time, ask a judge when are you going to stop selecting the big fluffy ones for champion?  Max told me that the judges reply was when the breeders stop bringing them.

  Photos of both shows will be posted ASAP.

Exhibiting & Promoting / Re: 2017 NATIONAL SHOW IS HISTORY
« on: November 03, 2017, 08:22:04 AM »
ABC member Andrea Drenth not in picture.

Exhibiting & Promoting / Re: 2017 NATIONAL SHOW IS HISTORY
« on: November 03, 2017, 08:13:34 AM »
Large fowl show

Exhibiting & Promoting / Re: 2017 NATIONAL SHOW IS HISTORY
« on: November 03, 2017, 08:00:12 AM »
Large fowl show

Exhibiting & Promoting / Re: 2017 NATIONAL SHOW IS HISTORY
« on: November 03, 2017, 07:56:26 AM »
Bantam Show

Exhibiting & Promoting / Re: 2017 NATIONAL SHOW IS HISTORY
« on: November 03, 2017, 07:46:30 AM »
Bantam Show

Exhibiting & Promoting / Re: 2017 NATIONAL SHOW IS HISTORY
« on: November 03, 2017, 07:43:55 AM »
Junior Show

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