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Keeping Chickens Newsletter

July 2013 Vol. 1

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July 2013
Vol. 1

Mating and Breeding Single Comb Anconas
FRANK C. STIER
(famous Ancona breeder of the 1920s)


It is an old maxim that great actors are born, not made. The same thing holds good to a great extent with the poultry fancier though I have seen some wonderful breeders developed where the proper interest existed and the necessary effort was put forth to accomplish the desired results.

We breeders of Anconas have had a very difficult road to travel during the past years and still have a lot of rough spots ahead.

Anconas displayed in the past were surely poor specimens when compared with our latest creations. They were all shapes and sizes, and also poor in color. By that I mean their mottling was simply a mess of heavy splashes, light in wings, with beefy combs. But they certainly were sensational layers, giving students of breeding a real foundation to work on in developing their exhibition qualities, and they are rapidly being brought to a high state of perfection.

Having been connected with Ancona breeding for many years, I am in a position to speak with some degree of authority on the subject of Ancona progress; particularly so since I have been active in club affairs, having served on several Standard Revision Committees. To produce winners for our leading poultry shows, requires several fundamental principles:

First, work-I place this first for the reason that results cannot be obtained otherwise. It has been possible in the past, and probably will be in the future, to produce individual specimens for these shows without a great deal of effort, but in order to be a real success in a big way it is absolutely necessary for a breeder to make up his mind to put forth good hard, patient work, year after year. The amount of labor required to hatch, raise, condition, ship and put in the show a complete string of birds, is beyond the conception of any person who has not gone through it. All credit is due the one who honestly and conscientiously puts it across, regardless of what particular exhibition it might be. No matter who produced them, a string of birds cannot be brought home winners against keen competition without very hard effort. To raise them from chick to maturity, then place them in the show as winners, spells just one word-"work".

Second, vision-I place this second for the reason that no matter how hard you work, or what your material to work with might be, you cannot succeed unless you are able to visualize what you are aiming at and must produce to win at our leading shows. Every time a breeder mates up a pair of birds he pictures in his mind's eye just what the results are going to be or rather, just what he expects them to be. The successful breeder is never satisfied, his vision is always ahead of what he produces.

Third, material-I place this third for the reason that there must be some foundation from which to work. How to get the proper material, is up to the individual. This is not a sales argument so I will only touch on it lightly, but will say, it is not always the price you pay, but rather whether you are getting real blood lines from a breeder who has


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Keeping Chickens Newsletter - Published July 2013 by www.Self-Sufficient-Life.com