Chook experts flock to town for big show
MONTO Poultry Club attracted dedicated poultry producers in the first of its two annual chook shows.
Two judges from New South Wales came up, along with a number of expert farmers from Central Queensland and beyond to mingle with the local fowl farmers.
Glenda Hurst has been raising poultry for 21 years and has learned a thing or two.
“It takes a lot of patience, a lot of persistence, a lot of it’s in the genetics as well as the presentation,” Ms Hurst said.
“They’re not all champion material, you have to assess each fowl and see which one fits a champion standard and which one doesn’t.”
Ms Hurst ran several Australorp fowls in the Monto Poultry Show, which ended up becoming Grand Champion of the competition.
In addition to being good utility fowls fit for both meat and laying, the Australorp is Australia’s national fowl.
The judges debated long and hard over who should get the top spot, but in the end, Ms Hurst’s bird won.
Reserve Champion went to Monto Poultry Club treasurer Neville Keitley for his large black-red cockerel.
Poultry club steward Clinton Nowland said the judges have an Australian Standards book which is considered the “Bible” of poultry judges.
“The judges were arguing over which bird should be Grand, they nearly wanted to bring in a third judge,” Mr Nowland said.
Long-time poultry judge Mal McDougall from Bundaberg, who attended as a competitor, said he’s been showing at Monto since he was 18.
“I see a lot of the same faces, but a lot of new ones have taken it up as a hobby or getting their kids into it,” Mr McDougall said.
“You get people from all different parts of Queensland, you learn to quiet them down, wash them up and enter in the show.”
The Monto Poultry Club typically runs two shows a year. This was the first, having been previously delayed due to the floods.
Next will be a Super Show in September 9, with $500 prize for Grand Champion and $250 for Reserve Champion up for grabs.
FOWL PLAY: Glenda Hurst came up from Baffle Creek to win Grand Champion at the Monto Poultry show.