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Chicken breeds on show

Chicken breeds on show

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The best of more than 100 chook breeds are going on display in Melbourne, SIMON WEBSTER reports.

A fascination for Feverolles? A penchant for Pekins? Get yourself down to the Royal Melbourne Poultry Show, where more than 1600 birds – in 10 sections, more than 100 breeds and 3000 classes – will be on show.

The rooster pictured is a Light Sussex, a quiet, hardy meat breed that can also be a useful layer in some bloodlines.

Light Sussexes are also prized for their ability to produce auto-sexing offspring: cross a female Light Sussex with a male Rhode Island Red and you will get male and female chicks with different colour patterns, which makes life a lot easier for breeders.

Of course, if you’d bought the Organic Gardener Essential Guide: Backyard Chickens (on sale now) you would have already known that.

The Royal Melbourne Poultry Show is open 10am-5pm on Saturday, June 8, and 10am-2pm on Sunday, June 9. It takes place at Melbourne Showgrounds in Building 10, Agriculture Hall. Entry is free and patrons are asked to enter via gate 5, on Langs Road, Ascot Vale.