|Pekins and Cochin Bantams||
Hi folks! This is just a quick apology for the lack of posts recently. I have been busy getting engaged, married and travelling all over with my awesome wife. Things are settled back down now and i should get back to regular posting!
This is a questions i see quite a lot in various forum posts. It is a trickey one to answer too.
Pekin is a true bantam breed, that does not have a large fowl equivalent. They are the same as a Cochin bantam. Large fowl Cochins are NOT a large version of the bantam though. They are breed designed around the same charateristics, but bred from different varieties to achieve that.
If you shrunk or "bantamised" a large fowl cochin you would not get a Cochin bantam as we know the breed today, they are an entirely seperate breed.
The difference in the naming conventions is rather strange, here in South Africa and across europe the birds are called Pekin bantams or Pekins, in the USA they are known as Cochin bantams. Those are two different names for the same little fluff balls we know and love.
Hope that has helped to clear things up a little,
I am curious about "The Standard" when it comes to patterned varieties, why does it still describe birds that cannot be bred from single mating?
To a newcomer like me this seems patently ridiculous, as now you are breeding two separate varieties under the guise of a male bird and a female bird of the same variety.
Look at Partridge (and Silver Pencilled), the male described is more like a duckwing, the female a patterned brown.
Both, as currently described in the standard, cannot be bred by single mating.
So why do we need to breed two separate varieties to enter one partridge class?
Surely the standard should actually reflect what can be achieved by mating male to female in one pen?
Is there something simple i am missing here, These birds are not only different in phenotype but in genotype as well, how are these the same birds?
Male partridge lacks Pg in its pure form, female has pure Pg. This to me shows two separate varieties, not one. Why cant we show the males that produce the SQ females, why are chests still required to be fully black? Something that does not seem possible from a SQ male to SQ female breeding.
Our standard here is a "copy and paste" from yours in the States, and while i have no problem with that, i cant help but think there is some antiquated thinking here that is not helping the fancy at all in the long run.
Ultimate Diversity in a single Rooster?
Some of us are limited in our breeding scope as to what we can keep in our breeding pens or backyards, my goal was to try and find a single male capable of producing a large variety of colours and patterns.
Is this possible? Sure. One bird is responsible for over 16 rare phenotypes.
While writing formulae for coming up with mille fluer and single laced pekins, i came up with a genotype i found interesting, a single male bird, being responsible for a huge number of patterns and varieties. This would be an obvious bonus to produce a huge diversity of rare colours and patterns not seen in this country, and the genotype was perfectly possible to create, with birds i already have.
Sounds intriguing? Well it is. The proposed "Rosetta bird" is made from a single initial cross, a Partridge male split for mottled (s+/s+ Pg/Pg Mo+/mo, co+/co+), over a silver Columbian hen (S/-, Co/Co, Mo+/Mo+).
These two bred together will produce a bird of
S/s+ split for silver, able to produce gold and silver
Some random letters i know. But this single male bred to a partridge female will give you both partridge and silver pencilled, bred to a columbian hen will give you buff columbin and columbian, bred to a silver laced both gold and silver laced, bred to the f1 hens mille fluer.
To start off a project that big requires just five birds, the original male, the split f1 male, a partridge hen, a columbian hen and a single combed Silver Laced Wyandotte bantam. Sure he would throw some incomplete in each breeding, but the basic formula is highly leverage-able.
You would have to hatch a lot of birds, and eventually outcross to preserve vigour, but just, wow.
This is a perfect genotype to instantly create varieties (or the base of varieties) that are rare, or just don't exist. Yes these will not breed 100% true 100% of the time, but no newly created prototype birds do, there will be a lot of hatching and a lot of culls, but at least those will be unusual and should sell well.
Let's have a look at some.
Split male over Columbian hen (S/-, Co/Co, pg+/pg+)
Split male over Partridge hen (s+/-, co+/co+, Pg/Pg)
Split male over SLW bantam hen (S/- Pg/Pg, Ml/Ml Co/Co)
Split male over f1 hen (s+/ Pg/pg+ Co/co+ Mo+/mo)
This Rosetta bird will not produce 100% show quality offspring, but will produce birds close enough to start all of these projects on. Allowing a single breeder to produce starting lines for all of the above. Yes they will all have recessive mottling, but those that come out pure for mottling can be used in the mille fluer project.