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 Post subject: Cochin Breed Profile
PostPosted: Fri Feb 06, 2009 9:49 pm 
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Champion Bird
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Cochin Breed Profile

So what’s a Cochin you ask, well for starters the correct pronunciation is coach – in as in horse and coach inn. This ancient fowl has been bred and cared for by Brahma-Buddhist monks for hundreds of years. They believed them to be the living, moving temples wherein the spirits of their departed ancestors and relatives dwell, by whose wings they are wafted to eternal life after a certain probationary period on earth.

What is really remarkable, the rare, it is claimed, carefully kept records in certain Chinese mi-aus- a kind of retreat or monastery of Cochin fowls which go back 1500 years. Great numbers where raised by the monks and in some Mi-aus only buff and partridge where kept and in others birds of mixed colours where kept. The “Kin Kee” ( gold flowered) where the most esteemed, both as regards antiquity and purity.
( Cochin Bantams. Americian BantamAssociation1945)

As for more recent history The Cochin found its way to the shores of Britain in 1845. Her majesty Queen Victoria first showed a number of Cochin type birds at the Dublin Royal Show in 1846 after they where presented to her earlier as a present. These fowl where said by some to display evidence of Malay blood and where quite different to the more modern Cochins developed some 20 years later. These birds where from further imports and no doubt came from more pure imports than the first arrivals ( Brahma & Cochin Poultry. Beech Publishing House 2002)

Cochins are responsible for much of our exhibition history as the breeders in Britain had seen nothing like them and wished to have and promote them. Vast sums of money was paid for them by the gentry of the day and showing them at the Crystal palace in London became all the rage setting the scene for modern day poultry shows.

Enough about history, the Cochin is a bird that’s all about feathers the adage the more the better applies to them. That’s not to say that body is also not required, weights of 5 to 6 kilo are to be aimed for. This combined with the wealth of feather is what gives the Cochin its appearance of great size.

There main laying pattern is from early winter thru to early summer and they lay a nice sized tinted egg and generally lay every other day some will lay every day until they go clucky usually with 3 to 4 weeks of first laying if weather conditions are warm.

Some vent trimming or plucking is required in most specimens to ensure good fertility with around 3 to 4 females per male being the norm. They make reasonable mothers although heavy specimens can squash chicks as they hatch.

Faults:

Some strains are inclined to split wings a recessive gene but once established hard to get rid off.

Poor foot feathering, I like to see at least some evidence of centre toe feathering even if only a few stubs. Once again the more the better some even have all four toes covered to the toe nail. This is a real sign of good breeding.

Watch for pale eyes they should be a good deep orange to red being preferred.

Small size, certain birds may throw back to Pekin ancestry, do not breed from these bird unless you have or can find nothing better.

Try to select for yellow legs where possible but do not just select for this trait with neglect to more important issues such as size feathering ect

Vulture hocks are highly undesirable they are generally very long stiff hard quill like feathers growing straight out behind the bird. Hocks should be soft and curl around behind the leg touching at both ends in good specimens

Hard feathering is to be avoided select for soft feathering which has plenty of fluff
And a good deep chest sets off the winning bird. Well rounded cushion with out stiff long hard tail feathering is also a must.

Colour:

Keep black marking to a minimum in the buffs do not allow into the breeding pen unless they are superior in other points and don’t permit white anywhere in the plumage as it is very difficult o get rid off and can make your buffs mealy.

Cream in the white hackle of male can be an issue try to avoid where possible. Introducing black is said to clear this fault up.

White under colour in black males and roots of tail feathers is another fault. Select for sound black females, a form of double mating may be required although not desirable due to breeding complications.

Blues select for sound depth of blue shade avoiding washed out or on the other hand almost black birds. Lacing not being required.

Partridges can be bred from the same pen although it’s difficult to get the lemon shade in male hackle or the real delicate female penciling and that dead oak leaf colour in the female with out D.M.
I could write more about colour but I think it might be best to wait till we start to get more of the other colours going before getting into to much depth.

Like begets like breed from the best and breed early cull hard and you will be rewarded with one of the most attractive poultry breeds there are.

I could go on a lot more but I think I will save it for a book someday.


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 Post subject: Re: Cochin Breed Profile
PostPosted: Sat Feb 07, 2009 12:13 pm 
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Superior Bird
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Very informative profile, would love some pics to go with it.


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 Post subject: Re: Cochin Breed Profile
PostPosted: Sat Feb 07, 2009 5:15 pm 
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Showy Hen
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Hi, If anyone wants to see a picture of what a Champion Cochin looks like, buy Practical Poultry Issue 33 December 2006 featuring The Cochin Clubs 2006 winner. England. Pictured is a white Cochin.

It has a feature on Sourcing Cochins. It does not discuss colours to any degree.What it does is describe in detail what the Cochin should look like.

I know its not the Australian Cochin but it gives us all the knowledge we are looking for regarding standard points.

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 Post subject: Re: Cochin Breed Profile
PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2009 12:08 pm 
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Old Mother Goose
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Here is a picture of a Buff Cochin, which I copied from the UK Cochin Club website.


Image

Cochin Club UK

What can you tell me about that bird Cochinman? Is it a good bird?

Raf

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 Post subject: Re: Cochin Breed Profile
PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2009 3:29 pm 
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Discerning Duck
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There is a guy in the UK who occasionally posts on here and he has some real beauties! i think his name is Tim?
Sigrid
ps he has alot of colours as well

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Large and Bantam leghorns in blue, Black, white, splash and blue duckwing, Marans in Wheaten, Polish in wc black, Malays, Coronation and speckled Sussex. Also Secretary to the French Marans Club of Australia.


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 Post subject: Re: Cochin Breed Profile
PostPosted: Tue Feb 10, 2009 12:38 am 
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Superior Bird
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sigridpitkin wrote:
....... i think his name is Tim?

He's very shy according to his signature. :wink:
I can't remember his username though.


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 Post subject: Re: Cochin Breed Profile
PostPosted: Tue Feb 10, 2009 11:54 am 
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Old Mother Goose
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His username is Timbo,

memberlist.php?mode=viewprofile&u=1874

He is no longer shy apparently. :wink:

Raf

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See www.bluelacedgold.wordpress.com for details


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 Post subject: Re: Cochin Breed Profile
PostPosted: Tue Feb 10, 2009 9:07 pm 
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Old Mother Goose
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Location: Canberra
Timbo kindly sent me the following PM, a gracious BYP member for sure;


Timbo wrote:
........the first one though very similar to Peter Heywood's Chattsworth House line, is just a little short in the leg, but is very typical of the British buff. Quite light buff, with a hint of smut in the tail which would make him a good breeder with a little more leg length, The picture hazy but it's not bad to show type.......
All the best

Tim


THere are some good pics there of the Cochin type (I believe)

Raf

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Breeder of Blue Laced Red Wyandottes.

See www.bluelacedgold.wordpress.com for details


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 Post subject: Re: Cochin Breed Profile
PostPosted: Tue Feb 10, 2009 9:54 pm 
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Showy Hen
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Hiya, my ears were burning for some reason. I would just like to complement the breed profile, :D :D that is an excellent job. I'd just like to add another colour. This chap has one blue feather on his right cheat, but he has fathered some very nice calm birds. The license was cheaper if I had black and white :sleep:

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

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Last edited by Timbo on Thu May 19, 2011 6:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Cochin Breed Profile
PostPosted: Tue Feb 10, 2009 10:05 pm 
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Discerning Duck
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I am in awe of your birds Timbo.......so much so i remembered your pictures from a post which i am sure is more than 6 months old.
:D
Sigrid

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Large and Bantam leghorns in blue, Black, white, splash and blue duckwing, Marans in Wheaten, Polish in wc black, Malays, Coronation and speckled Sussex. Also Secretary to the French Marans Club of Australia.


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 Post subject: Re: Cochin Breed Profile
PostPosted: Wed Feb 11, 2009 4:42 am 
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Showy Hen
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Thank you very much Sigrid :oops: It's nearly Spring down here? So here's some Cuckoo's! :) :D
Image

Image

This fella isn't what you might call shy :o :shock:

Image

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Last edited by Timbo on Thu May 19, 2011 6:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Cochin Breed Profile
PostPosted: Wed Feb 11, 2009 6:44 pm 
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Champion Bird
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Its interesting seeing the British Cochins they are a lot lighter in colour than many of the Aussie Cochins. I would complement the birds on their strong foot feathering and good wide fronts I do think that you would need to keep an eye out for white under colour in some of those paler buffs.

It will be a grand day for the breed when we can interchange bloodlines between the different hemispheres.


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 Post subject: Re: Cochin Breed Profile
PostPosted: Wed Feb 11, 2009 7:25 pm 
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Showy Hen
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Ii wholeheartedly agree with your sentiments on the exchange program Paul. It would be an exciting time for all of us.

I'd just like to give assurances the buffs are buff to the bone :) The outside living does bleach them a lot, but any Quill whiteness in a bird ensures it's trip to the pet chicken auction. Here are some indoor birds that have a more rich colouring. The front girl is result of an orpington egg, that the layer was a feather leg boy fan :lol: :lol: :lol: :P

Image

Image

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Make your words soft and sweet, as one day you might have to eat them!


Last edited by Timbo on Thu May 19, 2011 6:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Cochin Breed Profile
PostPosted: Wed Feb 11, 2009 8:33 pm 
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Showy Hen
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Hi,

The Cochin picture downloaded from the Cochin Club is a magnificent example of what I think our Cochin should look like. Look at the picture.

Note the shape of the cushion, how round it is! No hard feathers in the tail! No point at the top.

Notice the amount of feathering on the legs and feet! The feathering should follow through to the feet without stopping.

And everyone can see the enormous body size.

The reason I suggested the Cochin Club of England for Cochin pictures is because we need to be looking at Cochin pictures that look like the Standard. What I’m trying to say is while I think the added pictures on this post are exceptional if they aren’t the standard then we could easily go the wrong way with our Cochin.

The picture of the blue Cochin looks great. Notice the legs, on my computer they appear to be yellow, the standard calls for blue legs and feet with yellow pads. If we aren’t aware of this fact we could waste years trying to get them back!

I read somewhere, where someone got hold of some Jersey Giants. Not knowing the standard called for black legs and feet with yellow pads. They culled all the birds with black legs and kept the yellow-legged ones. The Jersey Giant was lost.

I am far from being an expert but we must all be aware of the standard if we intend to breed rare breeds. It would be a disaster if our ignorance destroyed the years of breeding that others before us have done.

I suppose this leads us back to the idea of some kind of mentoring program (wrong post). Here at least it should be a mentoring of the standard!


The photo for the previous post has been removed. At the time I felt it should be made clear to new breeders of Cochin that the standards called for the black and blue varieties to have Black-Dusky yellow or lizard or Blue- legs and feet blue with yellow tinge in pads.

The original books back in the 1800 said that the “bodies were so large the birds looked like they had scrawny necks”. The necks should not be scrawny but they should not long necked nor should they be long legged.

The 1800s description for their tails stated- “The tail of the cock is very short and compact, soft, and free from hard stiff feathers. In neither the cock nor the hen do I like to see the tails sticking up; it should form a nice agreeable line with the back, or be slightly elevated, and terminate in nice soft drooping feathers in the cock; the tail in the hen wearing a much shorter appearance from the dense mass of feathers around it”.

The British Standards 5th Edition states” Tail small, soft, with as little hard quill as possible, and carried low or nearly flat”& The back very flat, wide and short, with the cushion exceedingly broad, full and convex, rising from as far forward as possible and almost burying the tail. Neck rather short.

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You gather the information and you make the decisions.
If they can do it, why can't I.


Last edited by cochin/giant mad on Wed Jun 29, 2011 10:33 am, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Cochin Breed Profile
PostPosted: Thu Feb 12, 2009 12:48 am 
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Showy Hen
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:lol: :lol: :lol: I have to advise you fine peeps, that know one in our cochin club with admit to ownership of the Buff in question. But should not be what you are looking to style your breed on. I have previously noted the legs are on the short side. But the neck is positively scrawny, not something to set your sites on at all. If everyone interpreted the standard, then added their own little bit, we would all end up with winky-wanky birds."No hard feathers in the tail! No point at the top." The standard says " with as little hard quill as possible" There is no mention of there not being a point to the top. Then onto what the standard says about the carriage of the tail! " Carried low or nearly flat" Which the Buff from our club site is not, and only one of my free ranging ones is.

I'm sure everyone that has ever kept or shown a bird, is aware, there is no such thing as the perfect bird. So to that end if the fault finding on the blue, would have been rust of the saddle and hackles (Not a lot though :? ) that that's a fair cop. :oops: :wink: But you must appreciate, yellow legs are the basis of all cochins. The wording in the standard has not changed since the 1960 Second edition, but the standard is a guide. Though in reality in the showing pens there is a preference to more yellow than either blue, or lizard. Please don't forget that blue, black, white and splash are all the same colour range, and the leg colour is slightly different for each one.

If the blue pictured had white legs. Then that would be a problem, or even blue on white pads. I'll post some pictures of some winning birds from this years federation show. So as to reinforce the " no such thing as a perfect bird" adage.

Continuance of leg feathering?

Image
What do think of the tail? Look at the neck, and the proportion of leg to body mass.
Image

A lovely black pullet. With the correct to standard bustle " Almost" covering the tail.

Image

Before the show.

Image

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Make your words soft and sweet, as one day you might have to eat them!


Last edited by Timbo on Thu May 19, 2011 6:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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