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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 12:34 am 
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Dapper Duck
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Joined: Wed May 16, 2007 7:49 pm
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Hamburghs: An Overview

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J. R. Hunt
Email address: hamburghpoultry@gmail.com

I have been breeding Hamburghs for around 14 years and have had the experience at breeding all five colours (Black, Silver and Gold Pencilled, Silver and Gold Spangled. I keep five colours; Gold Pencilled, Silver Pencilled, Silver and Gold Spangled and Black. I acquired my first Gold Pencilled Hamburghs from my Grandfather who kept them for many years.

It worries me to read some of the post about Hamburghs on the internet. So this small piece is intended to inform readers about Hamburghs.

Hamburghs have a mysterious origin, and have been known by many names thought out their existence. Some former names which were used include; Dutch Everyday Layers, Chittiprats, Creels, Pheasant fowl and Mooneys (Batty, 1983). I have seen the spelling of their name in two ways HAMBURGH as used by (May, 1971; Batty, 1983; Kemp, 1997) and HAMBURG as used by (Manning, 1883). I would suggest that the nomenclature used in future follows (May, 1971; Batty, 1983 and Kemp, 1997).

Kemp (1997) suggest that “it is one of the oldest breed of poultry still in existence… ancestors of the Spangled varieties can be traced back three hundred years”.

Hamburghs in general
All varieties of Hamburghs should have bright red eyes, grey slate coloured legs free from any feathers with four toes; the face has a small white ovate earlobe. They should be of a medium-large size. May (1971) suggest that the weights should be around 5lb (~2.2kg) for the male and 4lb (~1.8Kg) for the female. They should have a full tail comprising eight feathers. This is hard to find with most having six or seven feathers. The tail should be held upright, straight and fanned.

The Hamburgh is an average layer. These days there are breeds which outdo them in laying capabilities. In my experience they seldom go broody, but I have had the odd one or two go broody when left to roam on their own.

The comb should be of rose comb type with fine workings. The leader should be rounded and not blade like, inclined on an angle of around 45˚. The comb should not overhang the skull and sit squarely. Wattles should be in proportion to the face gear; ie the earlobes and size of the head.

This breed is a graceful and beautiful. Much attention is needed to keep the breed refine and graceful. The Pencilled Hamburghs are one of the hardest to breed for show purposes. They require double mating to maintain and achieve the correct plumage pattern.

May (1971), Batty (1983) and Kemp (1997) document Hamburghs being exhibited in five colours (Black, Gold and Silver Pencilled along with Gold and Silver Spangled).

The Pencilled Varieties
I will only mention a few things here, if you want to know more about breeding Gold Pencilled Hamburghs http://www.users.on.net/~greggles/gp.html is a good site, with lots of information about breeding Gold Pencilled Hamburghs.

A couple of points:

• The neck hackle should be free from penciling,
• The breast should have fine bars horizontal on the feather all the way up to the throat.

The Spangled Hamburghs
The Gold Spangled and Silver Spangled Hamburghs are VERY different in their marking. Today, most Gold Spangled Hamburghs seem to be a cross with Silver Spangled and this is easily recognized by their poor quality markings.

The main difference between the two Spangled colours is that:
In a gold spangled,
• The tail should be fully black, with beetle green sheen.
• The spangled feathers of the body are laced by the ground colour, (more like a pheasants markings).

A good article on the feather marking of the Gold Spangled Hamburghs was published by the Australian Hamburgh Breeders Club in October of 1995:vol. 3. Titled; Where, Oh Where Have the Gold Spangles Gone?

The Silver Spangles have spangled tail feathers, and the spangle on the body feathers is situated right on the end of the feather.

Black
The Black Hamburghs, are by far one of the prettiest breeds around, second only to a good Gold Pencilled. They are similar to the other varieties, bright red eyes, grey legs and a full tail. They should have good beetle green sheen throughout their feathers. A flat black, small white ovate shaped earlobes.

Batty (1983: 47) suggests two body types for the Black Hamburghs the Modern Type and the Old Type. All the birds I have seen exhibited in New South Wales and Victoria seem to be like the Modern Type with a ‘sleek’ look.

Some Basic things to be avoided in Hamburghs

• Dark and/or brown eyes. The eyes should be a bright red.
• Earlobes too large; many examples of this are seen in Black Hamburghs being shown at the moment throughout Victoria and New South Wales. Earlobes should be round and NO larger than 32 mm in diameter.
• Blue earlobes
• White in the face.
• Light coloured legs (legs should only be slate grey)
• Pencilling too coarse.

In recent year some other colours have emerged onto the scene (Blue and White). These two colours are only seen in the large fowl as there would be a clash with the Rosecombs if white and blue were to be produced in bantam standards. Also I have noticed on the internet the emergence of “lemon Pencilled Hamburghs”. I would like to know what other breeders think about this ‘new variety’.

Are these ‘lemon pencilled’ an attempt to recreate Silver Pencilled Hamburghs – but the gold tint is unable to be removed from the genetics?

In my opinion they look somewhat like a cross between Silver and Gold Pencilled and should not be considered as a variety.

I would be interested to hear other hamburgh breeders opinions/comments and their thoughts on the direction of the breed.


References

Batty, J. 1983. Lewis Wright’s Poultry. Triplegate. Surrey

Kemp, R. 1997 Exhibition Poultry Breeder’s Handbook 2nd Ed. Kangaroo Press. Kenthurst

May, C. G 1971. Brittish Poultry Standards 3rd Ed. Chapel River Press. England

Manning, R.1883. Illustrated Stock Doctor and Livestock Encyclopaedia. Pacific Publishing Company. Sydney


Last edited by Gyroptychius on Fri Jul 15, 2011 7:06 pm, edited 6 times in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 10:24 am 
gyroptychius, wrong title on you message. i nearly didn't open it and it is full of interesting info. even for the non hamburgh breeder.

the lemons are not a cross between the silver and the gold as any sebright breeder will tell you. it is from modifiers of gold, for example look at buff pekins and the range of shades in the buff. once the lemon buff was desired in the show pen but now it seems the golden buff is prefered.

i think the reason new colours are being developed is because of curiosity and the skills of some breeders. there is great satisfaction in putting into practise of genetic theory and finding that it works.....sometimes, but that can be explained after the fact by more genetic theory.
k


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 28, 2008 3:31 pm 
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Dapper Duck
Dapper Duck

Joined: Wed May 16, 2007 7:49 pm
Posts: 36
I cannot find much information on the Pekins in the literature which I have. However, Manning (1883) describes the buff Cochin that has “several varieties, in colour buffâ€


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 28, 2008 4:12 pm 
what one reads and sees on the net can never be trusted. anyone can say anything.....including you and me.

from you message i read you loud and clear.

i created new colours with great enthusiasm and love every moment. i find it fascinating and thrilling. an adventure. thought provoking and mind expanding. i weave my knowledge into health and other issues. i enjoy controversy, i love seeing people exclaim for better or for worse over my views and creations. i keep an open mind but have strong views too. so i think you are talking to the wrong person here as we will clash.

i could explain to you how to get a lemon bird but it would involve getting the genes from somewhere else which i think you would find abhorant. so will let sleeping dogs lie,
cheers,
k.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 05, 2008 5:11 pm 
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Junior Champion Bird
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Joined: Mon Jul 18, 2005 11:40 am
Posts: 727
Location: Rockhampton
I'm really pleased you have put this up here. Nice to have some real info out there.

Personally I see no need for new colours, we're flat out preserving the originals. If there was a groundwell of interest it would be fine. But right now, keeping the originals going is more important.

Good on you!

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Thank you kindly,
Tigger


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 07, 2008 10:01 pm 
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Wise One
Wise One

Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2008 9:40 pm
Posts: 2711
Location: Medowie NSW
Hi, A newby here,we were given silver spangled hamburgs eggs for our broody girl to sit on...well they hatched,and the dear little ones have green legs,is this normal and will they grow out of the colour? Thanks in advanced


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 6:13 pm 
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Dapper Duck
Dapper Duck

Joined: Wed May 16, 2007 7:49 pm
Posts: 36
A Hamburgh reference.

Probably one of the better books (although some pics are poor) on the Hamburghs; their standards and breeding.

Far more information than presented in the british and australian poultry standards.

It goes through their history, faults, and specific markings for the various colours. It covers the Hamburghs, Old English Pheasant fowl and Red Caps.


Batty, J., 2002. Hamburgh Fowl Family. Beech Publishing House, West Sussex.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 7:04 pm 
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Prime Pekin
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Joined: Sun Apr 03, 2005 9:48 am
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I don't see anything wrong in developing new colour combinations but agree with Tigger, type as per the Standard must be of prime concern. Also if the colour is Standardized in another breed it should be replicated with the same parameters.
Nothing wrong with making new breeds either, Dutch Bantams could be made using Rosecomb bantams, long legged Japanese bantams etc but the procedures already laid down should be followed, and full documentation and photographs be provided before acceptance.
Cross breeds, that do not breed true ,should not be accepted.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 8:42 pm 
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Wise One
Wise One

Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2008 9:40 pm
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Location: Medowie NSW
Thank you so much for all your information


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 25, 2008 10:14 pm 
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Fiesty Fowl
Fiesty Fowl

Joined: Wed Aug 02, 2006 9:11 pm
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Location: moorooduc VIC
love the info..

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breeder of polish (w/c black and w/c blue) and gold spangled hamburgs...


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 1:00 am 
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Dapper Duck
Dapper Duck

Joined: Wed May 16, 2007 7:49 pm
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Last edited by Gyroptychius on Thu Sep 04, 2008 10:54 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 6:58 am 
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Swan
Swan
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Joined: Thu Jul 12, 2007 7:18 pm
Posts: 3555
Location: Hunter Valley
nice pictures and good info.

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Cheers Ben Walkom - Breeder and Exhibitor of Partridge Wyandotte (Bantam) and Blue Partridge Wyandotte (Bantams)


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 10:19 am 
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Showy Hen
Showy Hen

Joined: Tue Jun 17, 2008 12:02 pm
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Location: Coffs Harbour / Grafton
Do you have any pics of Gold Spangled chicks and Pencilled chicks?
I am interested in the colour of these chick's legs at hatch.
Gold Spangled and Pencilled are eb based and both are also id+.


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 Post subject: Hamburgh
PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 11:33 pm 
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Champion Bird
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Joined: Fri Jul 27, 2007 6:27 pm
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Well researched and thought provocing article on the grand old Hamburgh breed. Its great to see people pasionate about their breed and well read as to the their breed history and breeding aspects, more power to you keep up the good work in continuing this wonderful breed.


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2008 11:06 am 
Hey guys,
just wondering if there are any breeders of silver pencilled hamburgs around and would be willing to sell?

Also there are some pics of gold pencilled chicks in this catergory under the heading "Success and No Success"


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