Tuesday, October 19, 2021
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Guide to poultry books worth owning

For those of you who have an interest in native game breeds, there is no other book to recommend than ‘British Game Fowl’ by Ian Kay.

This is a hardback book printed in 2005 and consists of 115 pages.

It covers all the British Game breeds, from the True Oxfords (which were used for cock-fighting in the past) to the diminutive Modern Game Bantam.

The history of the breeds is well documented and makes reference to many of the stalwarts (eg, Herbert Atkinson, Lord Derby, Lord Halifax and Dan Clayton) involved in the development and usage of the various breeds.

The information is accompanied by great pictures showing the development of the individual breeds over the past 100 years, including many in colour.

It also contains great illustrations of the Oxford and the Carlisle types of game along with easy to digest explanations of their different directions in the exhibition world.

For the Modern Game enthusiast, there is no better booklet than ‘Baldwin’s Book of Modern Game Bantams’. First published back in 1936, my copy is a 1977 reprint from the American Bantam Association. It is paperback and approximately 55 pages.

It is an invaluable asset in the assistance of colour breeding. It covers all standard colours of modern game, how to breed them true to colour and how to outcross with other colours for greater clarity for the show cage.

All aspects of rearing and show preparation are well covered with many black and white pictures of previous winners.

There is a fantastic chapter on the use of wheaten coloured birds in the breeding, and considerable information on the resulting offspring. It covers the complete set of five known wheaten varieties.

This booklet is hard to source but well worth the effort.

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