January - AGM February - Dave Guppy March - Phil Reaney April - Harry Hockaday
May - YSS June - Terry & Linds Jukes July - Ron Pearce September - Terry Tuxford
October - Members Show November - Bring & Buy

November 2011- Bring & Buy

Our chairperson, Chris Angus-Smith opened the meeting and welcomed everybody. Tony Cash then read out apologies from Clive Mayers, Tony Neale, Andrew McKendrick, Gerald Binks and Richard Hutchins.

Everyone was advised of the forthcoming AGM and told that they had been emailed the paper work etc.

With that Malcolm Freemantle, our outgoing President, said that after the first session of the auction he hoped everyone would enjoy the food that he and Pam had provided as their last President’s buffet. A big ‘thank you’ to Pam and Malcolm, for preparing and donating all the food and drinks.


Ricky Watts then acted as our auctioneer for the evening.

We raised, with your help, a total of 300.00 on the evening (200.39 bring & buy which includes a donation of 50 from Gerald Binks, 8.78 refreshments and 35 raffle) and another donation of 5.83 from Mike & Sara Ball to round it up to the 300. Well done to everyone there; the proceeds this year are up on last year and it all helps to keep the club going in the right direction for 2012.

Everyone there seemed to enjoy the evening and many thanks go to Ricky for his auctioneering as it was, as usual, a very hard sell!

Best wishes for Christmas and the New Year.

October 2011 - Members Show

The Members Show was very well supported with 82 birds exhibited.  Apologies were received from Ricky Watts, Lee Benton, John Mullen, Jim Lawrie, Richard Hutchins and Mike Ball. 

It was nice to have the company of Geoff Dell and Jeff Plummer on the day, although they missed out on a super lunch! (They know what I mean)  So ‘thank you’ to all who took the time to bring birds to the show; it was good to see so many of you and with everybody helping it made a very enjoyable day for all.

One new member signed up on the day – Dee Selby from Waterlooville in Hampshire.

After being booked in, the birds were placed on the staging by all of our helpers under the guidance of our show manager, Brian Duncombe who was assisted by John Gorrell.

Our judge for the day was Fred Wright, who started by saying a bit about himself and his relationship with Northdowns BS, as he judged the very first open show in Newbury.

Once started Fred gave a very clear running evaluation whilst judging, explaining the reasons for his choices and also explaining to the audience about the new rules regarding major faults on flecking and that birds have to be compete to win major prizes.

Fred explained the problems with the birds that were just ‘that bit out’ of condition and also with some that had ticking on the crown, which was why they were penalised as a fault. That aside, the best bird won on the day and it was in lovely condition. We thank Fred very much for his consideration to new members / beginners and for the way he explained the faults and positioning of birds.

We had a full ploughman’s lunch, after which the judging of the major awards was completed which generated lots of interest.

The Major Awards were made as follows, with the remainder on the attached sheet:

        Best in Show                             Dell & Plummer

        Best Young Bird in Show       Tony Neale & Son

        Best Junior Bird                         Julie Clarke


Brian Mansell - Best Intermedate Bird.

Clive Mayers Best Beginner

Dell & Plummers Goldenface BIS

Jacky Fox - Best Champion YB

Tony Neale & Son Best YB

Alex Whitman -  Best Novice AA

Best Junior Julie Clarke
 


Best in Show Dell Plummer.

All in all we had a very good day, with everyone helping at some stage for which I would like to thank you all again.

Don’t forget that the next meeting is the ‘Bring and Buy’, so please come, bring plenty and buy plenty, as it is our only fundraiser of the year.

Our President Malcolm Freemantle (his last year) is providing a buffet on the evening, so come and enjoy yourselves.

Thanks to our Chairperson Chris Angus Smith for providing & donating all refreshments. (Again)!

September 2011 - Terry Tuxford

Founder member, past secretary / chairman and Budgerigar World Editor, Terry Tuxford made a welcome return to Northdowns Budgerigar Society and captivated a group of fanciers with his stories of how he first became involved in the hobby following a successful career as a musician. He explained how in his early years he had a desire to judge and take up opportunities to travel overseas both judging and lecturing. Both of which, he has been very fortunate to be successful in.

He spoke about his involvement with Budgerigar World and explained some of the difficulties that have faced the magazine in recent times. He said, "BW had an enormous positive impact on the hobby for many years, it is really unfortunate that the present owner has allowed it to suffer."

The second part of the evening was entitled "Myth Busting" which involved audience participation to discuss an offer views and opinions about some of the urban myths that surround our hobby. Terry is keen to expand his list of Myths and would welcome suggestions.

July 2011 - Ron Pearce / Judging pairs

The meeting started at 8.00pm and everyone was welcomed by our Chairperson, Chris Angus-Smith.  Apologies were received from Gerald Binks, Clive Mayers, Andrew McKendrick, Tony Neale, John Mullen, Malcolm Parsons and Tony Jeffery (28 attended).

We have four new members, Bill Farr, Wally Sheppard, Mick Small, and Peter Merritt, who all joined when I was at the South Hampshire meeting.

With the birds benched (8 pairs as requested) Ron started by giving a brief of the format for the evening and by asking us to pair up the birds as if they were the only birds in our stud.  He gave us 45 minutes to do so, after which he would comment on the various pairings and give his ideas for improving the birds, bearing in mind the new guide lines laid down by the BS on major faults. 
Once we had all paired up what we thought to be the best pairings to breed from, we stopped for a tea break and general chat.

Ron then started to give various comments regarding the quality of the birds benched and the faults and good features that were in front of him.

With that out of the way Ron collected the pairing sheets from individual breeders and asked them to come up and explain the pairings they had chosen.   We had breeders from top champions like Allan Joyce to new beginners like Peter Christmas.  Ron gave advice to each individual on their pairings and suggested another bird as an alternative to help breed better youngsters in his opinion or to balance the faults in the pair.

A general discussion on various birds continued with Ron giving explanations on his view of pairings and why, assuming that this was his stud and all he had to work with! There were all sorts of birds there, from buffs to yellow feathered and flecked with golden faces and double factor spangles.

Ron went on to talk in general about the modern birds of today and asked if we were going too far with the quest to cover the face with feather. That is not to say that some feathering around the face is desirable and makes the bird look neat and not beaky.

He said the other problem with trying to increase the feather was the tailless wonders and the cysts that occurred on the wing butts and tails.  He admitted he had the odd super bird in his stud but had decided not to use them as it would only spread that factor into the rest of his stud - a balance had to be maintained in the pairings of the buff feature for the stud to survive.

After the judging, which was based on Ron’s best pair of the evening A4 to B6, the winner was announced as Lee Benton and Peter Christmas, who had teamed up together and were awarded the trophy for their efforts.

With that we all thanked Ron in the usual way for his professional commentary and the advice given to us all and for not taking any expenses on the night. We then had the raffle and all were wished a safe journey home.

(Bio security was maintained) 

Terry & Linda Jukes

The meeting started at 8.00pm and everyone was welcomed by our Chairperson, Chris Angus-Smith.  Apologies were received from Andrew McKendrick, Tony Neale, John Mullen, Malcolm Parsons and Tony Jeffery.

The Chairperson introduced our speakers, Terry & Linda Jukes, who had travelled down from Stoke on Trent and were giving a slide show and talk on the past & present.

Terry started by saying that they joined the hobby in 1976 and had built up a good stud of birds.  They had an exceptionally good breeding season in 1999, which raised the standard of the stud, but then had a fire (caused by an electrical fault) and lost all of the birds while they were away for two weeks in November 2002 on holiday in the USA. They arrived back at 7.30am to find the aviary burnt down and had to witness the devastation and loss of everything they had worked for.

Terry said he tries to help other people and stop them making mistakes.  His new set up includes 33 breeding units, sink and running water, which he says is a must. Music is played in the birdroom at all times and there is a burglar alarm to deter the uninvited. Late November they pair up all of the cages, because the more you breed the more likely you will produce a good percentage of quality birds.

Birds are fussy about who they want to breed with, especially the better birds and some won’t breed with certain coloured varieties.

In 1999 Linda qualified as a BS judge, which has benefits to clubs to engage two judges traveling together / expenses.

All the time the conversation was flowing, with the odd prompt from Linda, we were seeing birds from the past [Before Nov2002] as well as the new stud being developed now, including a very good Grey Spangle cock with directional feathering to die for.

Terry said they had been working with the spangle variety to try and get the correct markings in the spot as well as improve the wing markings.  They now had lights fixed at high level which are Ultra violet = brighter light (full spectrum) and never used a hospital cage, only a stock cage and heat and light.

Terry said they used Kaytree extract. The soft food is hand fed to chicks using crop needles and rubber tubing and during 10 – 15 years only 2 have been killed by choking. Only part fill crop and wait 3 – 5 seconds before removing tube and they won’t spit it up.     

Washed oats in F10 solution is only a small part of all the preparation we watched on the presentation, with almost a green grocers stock being used to supplement the soft food being given to the stock with the addition of honey added as well (Similar to Reinhard Molkentin).   

Terry said they had several aviary visits each year and before each one he used his fogging machine with a solution of F10, which we saw on the screen and again when they have gone.

Part 2 of the evening was devoted to their young stock and over year bred birds, with some Opalines with exceptional directional feathering as well as some flecking, ticked, grisie or whatever you like to call it; it’s now a major fault and will not win any major awards but very useful stock birds to work with.

There was a super Grey cock, clean as a whistle but a little short in the body, which Terry said needed a long stylish hen to mate to him to hopefully overcome that fault.

Once again, we all showed our appreciation to the speakers for a very entertaining evening.

We then had the raffle which had twelve prizes including 5 bottles of wine which raised 50 on the evening (Thanks to all).

YOUNG STOCK SHOW (Judge: Mick Freeborn)

The meeting started at 8.00pm and everyone was welcomed by our Chairperson, Chris Angus-Smith.  Apologies were received from Clive Mayer, Ron Payne, Jim Lawrie, Ron Pearce, Gerald Binks and Terry Mulley.

Mick Freeborn, our judge for the evening, started judging the birds (52) at 8.15pm, after explaining how he was going to judge them and that he would make some allowance because of condition as most birds this year seemed to be in-between moults.

Whilst judging Mick explained what features he was actually looking for in the birds and said that when there were two very similar birds it was difficult to place them first and second, as you needed to take into account all of their features / faults. He also stressed that birds entered deserved the time to allow them to perch.

Because it was a young stock show the classes were grouped together ‘cock and hen’ to simplify the judging and Mick said that condition was not paramount, as it was a members young bird show. Also, reclassification would happen if required as no one would be wrong classed.

As the judging went on Mick kept up a running commentary and ensured that everyone could see what he was doing. He asked for questions and comments as he was judging.

Whilst having refreshments before the main awards were judged everyone was looking at the birds and making their own comparisons and comments regarding them?

At the end of the judging Mick asked for any comments from the floor with regard to the judging and then proceeded to walk round with various breeders explaining about the birds and the faults and the reasons why they were placed where they were on the benches.

Our thanks to Brian Duncombe and our show manager who did a great job again assisted by David Rice!


BIS


Best Junior

Our congratulations to the main winners of the evening:

  • Cash & Gorrell: Best bird in show – Opl Grey Green Pied Cock
  • Cash & Gorrell: Best Barhead  -  Opl Grey Green Pied Cock 
  • Cash & Gorrell:  Best champion –  Opl Grey Green Pied Cock 
  • C.J.Ives :  Best intermediate – Sky Blue Cock
  • A. Whitman: Best Novice - Grey Cock
  • Tony Neale & Son : Best Beginner – Lacewing Cock
  • Julie Clarke : Best Junior – Cin Green Hen - (Great to have a junior in the club again)

We would also like to thank all (35) of those that helped with the setting up and removal of the trestles, plus other jobs, which makes life a lot easier. We had three more members paid up on the night and it was also nice to see Steve Bailey again who travelled up with Mick Freeborn.

Once again, we all showed our appreciation to the Judge / Speaker for a very entertaining evening and not taking any expenses’.

The evening then concluded with the raffle (59.00), after which the birds were lifted and all were wished a safe journey home.

April - Harry Hockaday

The meeting was called to order at 8.00pm and everyone was welcomed by our Chairperson, Chris Angus-Smith.  She gave a warm welcome to a new member, Peter Christmas before talking a little bit about her trip down under. 

Apologies were received from Ron Payne, Julie & Richard Hutchins, Grayham Cornwall and Delia Smith.

Chris then gave a short introduction about our speaker for tonight, “Harry Hockaday”.

Harry started by giving a brief about himself regarding birds and the hobby in general. He spoke about the nice people in the hobby and said that was probably the reason why he started back in the hobby again after all the messages / contacts made to him by many breeders.

He then started with the presentation, with the screen showing the caption ‘stud of birds or collection of birds?’ He went into great detail to explain the difference between the two, in that a stud of birds is when you use a particular blood line and work with it to bring out the best features working towards what you, the breeder, perceive to be the bird of your choice / the ideal budgie.  Therefore, when you pair up birds within that stud even the weakest chicks should be carrying some of the good features you’re working with, like the distance from the cere across to the eye from a frontal view.

A good stockman will always succeed with his stud, as he works with it to improve all the time.  He will go to a stud to purchase the outcross that possesses the main features in depth in that stud that he is lacking and use it to add that feature onto his stud, without putting in any of the hidden bad features if he can.

A collection of birds is where you buy in birds from many different aviaries and pair them up to others in the collection you already have.  You might breed the odd good bird and some very poor that you discard all the time, but you can still breed that odd winner which keeps you near the top of the showing list.

There are three kinds of breeders, Line Breeders, In breeders and Out crossers, but to succeed to the top it is best to breed with related stock (Harry’s opinion).  When breeding stock you must breed show birds with style, balance and deportment as well as stock birds, or you will never catch the judge’s eye if they are slumping across the perch.

When accessing your birds look at the feather ie: shortness of feather will give you rounder spots and the longer feather will give you the throw required to give that blow on the head, which we all are trying to achieve. Why are breeders trying to breed cock headed hens as it’s not desirable at all and not as nature intended?  Breed good looking hens and they will breed you good quality youngsters.

When pairing up, most breeders catch up a good looking cock bird then go to the flight to look for the correct hen for him.  What I do is compare two cock birds, ie: look at the desired features the two birds have, decide what you trying to put on to your birds and use the best one to breed with the lesser one’s daughter carrying the desired feature you are trying to add to your stock. The daughter will have the feature you are trying to improve and because you have a stud of birds with most of the features built in the good features will prevail and come out in the youngsters.

Part two of the evening was dedicated to showing the birds from when he sold his stud to Alan Adams to the current young he has bred now, using the same techniques as described above.  The proof was there for all to see and the presentation finished up showing a super bird with the caption “Did it Work”? (I think it did!).

We then had a short question and answer session, which again highlighted the new proposed judging rules. This led to very interesting comments from many breeders airing their own opinions regarding the way forward, which in the end will be dictated  by all of us breeders in what we breed and show.

March   - Phil Reaney

The meeting was called to order at 8.00pm and everyone was welcomed by our Vice Chairman Grayham Cornwall (Chris still down under).  

Apologies were received from John Mullen, Clive Mayers, Will Bien and Nigel Darley.

Grayham then introduced our speaker for the evening, Phil Reaney, giving a short history of him in birds and that he is also now a recognised show cage manufacture (MDF).

Phil took to the floor and explained what he was going to talk about during the evening.  He started by saying how long he had been in the hobby and about the different breeders he had received help and stock from in the early years. (Also how he came back into the hobby in 94 and brought in Mannes birds)

Part one of the evening was called “Analysis” of shows, with the percentages of birds shown at various shows.  Generally 15% lower were benched than entered, with the numbers in section classes getting less, which showed that changes needed to take place in the showing of our birds for the future of our hobby. When asked if these ideals had been put forward to our governing body for examination his reply was that it ‘fell on deaf ears’!

Some of the ideals were simple and practical to implement and made sense to most in the meeting (38), which would make the CC`s worth winning and give larger classes in front of the judges to adjudicate.

He then showed a video of his mainly young birds, which most people would love to have in their aviaries because of the quality of feather that his birds carry.  He continued with a running commentary of the blood lines and the tremendous influence that birds purchased from Jo Mannes in Germany had put on the birds in his stud.

Phil started the second part of the evening with a “Genetics” slide show that explained basic genetic traits in a simple format, e.g. using G to represent a green gene and B to represent a blue gene, which would be the expected result from crossing a pure light green bird with a blue one.  GG x BB = all chicks GB that are light green split for blue. 

He went on to explain the modes of inheritance of other features such as sex linkage, double factors and feather types (broad feather and narrow feather).  Phil gave a running commentary, taking questions from the floor and giving explanations to ensure everyone understood what was showing on the screen.

 

He explained that similar principles applied to Yellow and Buff feathered birds, where you are able to produce yellow split buff chicks which are not as impressive as their buff siblings but capable of producing buff birds if paired correctly.  These yellow split buff birds are the ones that produce the super surprises for new owners from time to time - how often do we hear the comment about a super chick "the parents look nothing" (they are yellow split buff birds).

A detailed explanation was given on various breeding techniques, line breeding (related stock), inbreeding (very closely related stock), out crossing (generally allsorts) and backcrossing (grandparents etc). The various "ups and downs” were explained and also which pitfalls were to be avoided.

 

When purchasing birds Phil advised to buy features such as spot, body length, depth of shoulder and, most importantly, fertility.   However, remember when using the above breeding techniques that families of birds also have hidden faults which inbreeding could bring to the surface and you would then have to work around. General discussions on different aspects of his talk took us to the end of the evening.

Phil’s talk concluded at 10.15pm with a round of applause in appreciation of an excellent presentation.

After the raffle the evening then concluded and all were wished a safe journey home.

Please don’t forget that we have “Harry Hockaday” coming down next month.

“We also welcomed four new members to the club tonight”

February - Dave Guppy and Clifton Wixon

The meeting was called to order at 8.00pm and everyone was welcomed by our Chairperson, Chris Angus-Smith.  Apologies were received from Ron Payne, John Bishop, Clive Mayers, Terry Smith, Jim Lawrie, George Sutcliffe and Richard Hutchins. Chris then introduced our guest speaker for the evening, Dave Guppy, who was assisted by Clifton Wixon.
Their day started off in the pub at lunch time (why not!) after which they went to see Mike Ball’s aviary in Surrey where they spent an interesting afternoon looking at quality birds in depth.  After that they travelled down to Fareham in Hampshire to visit Tony Cash’s aviary and were joined by David Rice (need bigger shed).

Dave started by explaining how he started breeding birds in a coal shed at the age of 11. It wasn’t until later that he got into Clearwings, although he has always like Normal Greens.
He acquired birds in the past from the late Ken Gray & Phil Proctor and had reasonable success using those blood lines and also had good wins on the show bench. He explained the difficulties in trying to improve the Clearwings by using Light Greens as out crosses, hoping they weren’t split for cinnamon or Opaline, as they are undesirable features to put into Clearwings.

There was a lot of open discussion regarding using the Spangle variety into the Clearwings and the fact that all types of pairings have been tried and set aside as not having a real value in the improvement of the variety. This led on to the Opaline Clearwing and the reason they are not accepted as true Clearwings in the BS classification and have to be shown as AOC classes.  The Spangle variety was discussed again with regard to the fact that the type and colour had been spoilt by introducing the Cinnamon and Opaline factors into a bird that used to have beautiful markings on the wings / spots.
Dave said that he and others were getting disillusioned with trying to breed and improve a variety in line with the governing body’s guide lines, which are laid down by the colour standard committee.  He said that was why he was also concentrating on breeding Lutinos as another variety of budgerigar, having acquired some from Steve Cox.

Having four panel judges in the hall it was inevitable that judging and the new guide lines (to be implemented next year) were discussed. The general consensus was that shows will get lower numbers on the bench, with breeders not benching any birds with slight faults on them and that we will be seeing more double factor spangles etc., winning in the future.

Also, most breeders believe that the judges of today do a good job using their own discretion regarding faults on birds, without being told to “suck eggs” to coin a phase. The question was asked ‘who was going to police the judges and what penalties would be imposed on them?’

At the end of the evening Chris Angus-Smith led the thanks to our guest speakers and the raffle was held with 10 prizes, including five bottles of wine (thanks to members for their donations).   All were wished a safe journey home. 

A.G.M.  January 2011

The meeting was called to order at 8.05pm and everyone was welcomed by our Chairperson, Chris Angus-Smith.  Apologies were received from Andrew McKendrick, Tony & Janet Jeffery and Richard Hutchins.

The President’s Report (President Elect didn’t Arrived)

The President, Malcolm Freemantle, started by saying a thank you to everyone connected to the club for the work they did and apologised if he had forgotten anyone.  He said that both Chris and Tony had put in a tremendous amount of work over the year to ensure that Northdowns remained one of the best clubs in the south and that there had been some great meetings with entertaining speakers.

The Chairperson then gave her report:

Chris Angus-Smith said she had enjoyed the year very much and that having good speakers made it even better. She went on to thank her committee for all of their hard work during the year.

Chris then went on to welcome the new members, two of which were the Tony & Janet Jeffery partnership.  As most of you know, Janet is show secretary for the L&SC BS and many other open shows in the south and Tony acts as show manager at almost as many shows.

She also welcomed Malcolm Parsons from Worthing, who is the General Secretary for the L&SC BS and the new members who joined late last year, John & Caz Clarke, David Rice, George Sutcliffe and Lee Benton. So we are heading in right direction, with a full programme for 2011 and the 2012 programme well under way.

General and Membership Secretary’s report:

Tony Cash started by thanking the committee for all their work during the year, which had contributed to the success of the club. He said the club had picked up 7 new members during the year and now had 49 members (which included life and other free memberships). All of the meetings had been well attended during the year because of the quality of the program / speakers and he hoped this would continue during 2011 and beyond.

He confirmed that the hall was booked for the year 2011 (and 2012 provisionally) on the last Friday of each month, with the exception of September because of the Club Show.  Also, the October meeting, being the Members show, would be held on Saturday 29th October from 9.30am to 3.30pm.

Treasurer’s report: 

Barbara Davis went through the profit and loss/balance sheet reports that had been sent/given out to members. Barbara said that, compared to 2009, the income had gone down slightly and the expenditure had also gone up, but we still made a profit.

(Accounts Proposed by John Gorrell – Seconded by Brian Duncombe)

Election of Officers:

Malcolm took over the chair for the election of Chairperson.

Shows:

The majority attending the AGM voted to put on hold the running of an Open Show, which was proposed by Tony Cash and seconded by John Gorrell. On the back of that Malcolm Parsons was asked to step up and explain to everyone about the Southern Classic Open show and how it is now a standalone show run by the fanciers after support from various societies / organizations was withdrawn.

He explained that the group didn’t want to be owned or beholden to any club or society, but wanted to continue as a freelance run show.  However, it needed support from clubs like Northdowns and others within the Hampshire / Dorset borders or individuals, which would eventually help it to attain a Champion show status.

Malcolm was thanked for his appraisal of the show and Tony Cash said he would support them in whatever way he could.  He said he would also support the South Hampshire club, as he was to be their new 2011 president, reiterating that we all must support the shows in the area or they would just disappear, never to return.

Tony Cash said he looked forward to seeing everyone on Friday 25th February, when Dave Guppy would be entertaining from 7.45pm.  Please ring him if you cannot make it and he will offer your apologies to the meeting.