Chicken Breeds for Exhibition

By Chicken Pets on
Chicken Breeds for Exhibition

If you’re an aspiring backyard chicken keeper looking to showcase your flock at exhibitions, you’ve come to the right place! In this blog post, we’ll explore the top chicken breeds that are sure to turn heads and capture hearts at any show.

Chicken Breeds for Exhibition

The best chicken breeds for exhibition often include those with striking appearances, such as the Polish chicken, Silkie Bantam, and the Wyandotte. These breeds are not only visually appealing but often have captivating personalities and unique features, resulting in wonderful show birds.

Polish Chickens: A Head-Turning Choice

Polish chickens, known for their impressive crest of feathers that resemble a headdress, are a popular choice for exhibitions. These birds are full of personality and curiosity, making them standout stars at any show. They come in several color varieties such as Silver and Golden Laced, White, and Black Crested White.


  • Eye-catching appearance
  • Friendly and sociable nature


  • May require extra care due to their elaborate crest
  • Somewhat more prone to being picked on by other chickens

Silkie Bantams: Soft and Silky Show Birds

Silkie Bantams, with their unique fluffy, silk-like plumage, make unforgettable show birds. This breed’s irresistible cuteness paired with their friendly demeanor makes them a top choice for exhibitions. They come in several colors, including black, blue, buff, white, and several shades of red.


  • Unique, silky feather texture
  • Excellent temperament and easy to handle
  • Great choice for a family-friendly exhibition


  • Requires consistent grooming due to their fluffy feathers
  • May be less heat-tolerant than other breeds

Wyandotte: A Dazzling Dual-Purpose Breed

Wyandottes are a stunning, dual-purpose breed perfect for exhibition due to their striking, intricately-patterned plumage. These robust birds not only excel in the show ring but are also prolific egg layers and meaty table birds. Wyandottes are available in common colors like Silver Laced, Golden Laced, and Blue Laced Red.


  • Beautiful feather patterns
  • Good egg layers and meat birds
  • Adaptable and hardy


  • Can sometimes be more dominant than other breeds
  • Roosters may be occasionally aggressive

Sebright: Petite and Elegant Choice

Sebrights are small, ornamental bantam chickens, admired for their gracefully laced feathers and sleek rose comb. This breed makes an excellent exhibition bird thanks to its delicate features and striking appearance. Sebrights come in only two recognized color varieties: Gold and Silver.


  • Beautiful laced feathers
  • Compact size and well-proportioned body


  • A bit flighty and high-strung
  • Poor egg layers

Brahma: The King-Sized Showstopper

Brahma chickens are known for their impressive size and regal bearing, making a grand impression at exhibitions. They come in several colors, including Light, Dark, and Buff, with intricate patterns on their soft feathers. These gentle giants make excellent show birds due to their striking appearance and friendly nature.


  • Impressive size and appearance
  • Gentle and docile temperament
  • Adapt well to cold climates


  • Require more space due to their large size
  • Slightly slower growth and maturity rate

Orpington: Majestic Layers

Orpingtons, which originated in England, are a classic exhibition bird. Known for their large and fluffy appearance, they are available in a wide array of colors such as Black, Blue, Buff, and Lavender. In addition to their beauty, Orpingtons are also excellent egg layers, making them a practical and attractive choice for the show ring.


  • Beautiful plumage and appearance
  • Consistent egg layers
  • Friendly and social


  • May require extra care during hot weather
  • Prone to obesity if not monitored carefully

Faverolles: Unique and Charming Beauties

Originally bred in France, Faverolles chickens have a unique and charming appearance, thanks to their fluffy facial feathers, feathered feet, and distinctive five-toed foot structure. They have a friendly and gentle nature, making them perfect show birds. Salmon is the most popular color variety, though other colors like Black, Blue, and White are also available.


  • Unique features, including facial feathering and extra toe
  • Docile and friendly nature
  • Hardy in cold climates


  • May require extra grooming to maintain clean and well-groomed appearance
  • Not the best choice for free-ranging

In conclusion, choosing the right chicken breed for exhibition depends on your personal preferences and the unique characteristics you want to showcase. By considering factors like appearance, temperament, and care requirements, you can find the perfect show bird to steal the spotlight at any event. Happy showing!

Preparing Your Chickens for Exhibition

Now that you have a better understanding of the top exhibition chicken breeds, it’s essential to prepare your chosen birds for the big day. Here are some tips to ensure that your chickens look their best and have a great show experience.

Grooming and Maintenance

Keeping your show birds clean and well-groomed is vital for their overall presentation. Start by implementing a regular grooming schedule around 8 weeks before the exhibition. This includes bathing and combing your birds, as well as paying attention to the health of their feathers, feet, and beaks.

  • Trim and clean any dirty or damaged feathers using sharp scissors.
  • Carefully brush your chickens’ feathers to remove debris and maintain their shine.
  • Ensure that their feet are free from debris, and trim any overgrown nails.
  • Remove any dirt, stains, or discolored areas from their beak and wattles.

Proper Diet and Exercise

Like any athlete or performer, show birds require the right diet and exercise regime to perform at their best. Keep in mind the following tips to help your exhibition chickens shine:

  • Feed them well-balanced, high-quality feed specially formulated for show birds.
  • Offer fresh water daily, and supply clean water to prevent any excess dirt and germs.
  • Provide a secure and spacious range for your show birds to exercise and develop strong, healthy bodies.
  • Regularly monitor the weight and growth of your young show birds to ensure they reach their full potential.

Training Your Exhibition Chickens

Showing your chickens involves more than just grooming and diet; you need to train your birds to act accordingly in the exhibition environment. Pose training, for example, can help your chickens to display their best features when being shown:

  • Begin training several weeks before the show. Spend time each day handling your birds to build trust and establish a positive relationship.
  • Pose your birds in a comfortable and natural stance that highlights their breed characteristics, such as showing off neck arches and distinctive shapes.
  • Reward your birds with treats when they hold a desired pose. This reinforces positive behavior and makes them more eager to pose when necessary.

Transportation and Show Preparation

When the big day arrives, ensure that you have everything necessary for a successful show experience.

  • Use a secure and comfortable carrier that provides adequate ventilation during transportation.
  • Be prepared with any necessary paperwork for registration and breed identification purposes.
  • Arrive early to give your chickens enough time to settle in and acclimate to the show environment.
  • Have any grooming and cleaning supplies readily available for last-minute touch-ups.

With the right exhibition chicken breed, adequate preparation, and a dedication to their health and wellbeing, you’re sure to have a successful and enjoyable show experience.

FAQs About Chicken Breeds for Exhibition

Here are some frequently asked questions related to exhibition chicken breeds, covering everything from choosing the right breed to caring for your show birds. These answers will provide valuable insights and important tips for success in the show ring.

1. How do I choose the right exhibition breed for my needs and preferences?

Consider factors such as climate, space available, purpose (e.g., ornamental, egg production), and the amount of care and grooming a breed requires. Each breed has unique characteristics, so it’s essential to select one that aligns with your desires and resources.

2. How much time does it take to prepare and maintain show birds?

Preparation for a show can start as early as 8 weeks before the event, with regular grooming, diet management, and training. Year-round care involves monitoring their health, ensuring their diet and exercise are optimal, and tending to basic grooming needs.

3. How old should a chicken be to participate in a show?

Chickens should be at least 6 months old when participating in a show, though some shows may have different age requirements. Always refer to specific show guidelines and regulations to ensure your bird is eligible.

4. Are some chicken breeds friendlier or easier to handle during shows?

Yes. Breeds like Silkie Bantams and Faverolles are known for their friendly and docile nature, making them easier to handle during shows. Consider the temperament of a breed when selecting your show birds.

5. How do I keep my show birds healthy and vibrant?

Feed your birds a well-balanced, high-quality diet, and provide fresh water daily. Monitor their weight, growth, and overall health, ensuring they receive plenty of exercise and stimulation in a secure, spacious range.

6. Should show birds be housed separately from my other backyard chickens?

While it isn’t necessary to house show birds separately, it may help to reduce the risk of damaged feathers, stress, or illness. Consider the size and temperament of your flock when deciding how to house your birds.

7. How do I pose my chicken for a show?

Begin pose training several weeks in advance. Gently handle your birds daily and place them in natural stances that accentuate their breed characteristics. Reward good behavior with treats to reinforce positive habits.

8. What is the best way to transport my chickens to a show?

Use a secure, well-ventilated carrier designed for poultry transportation. Ensure your birds are comfortable and unable to escape during transit.

9. How do I keep my chickens clean at a show?

Arrive adequately prepared with grooming supplies for last-minute touch-ups. Make sure the exhibition area is clean and dry, and be proactive in addressing stains or dirt when they arise.

10. Can I train a chicken to respond to commands during an exhibition?

Yes. Consistent and positive reinforcement-based training can help your chicken learn to respond to commands, such as calling or cajoling them into a desired pose.

11. How do I protect my show birds from diseases at exhibitions?

Ensure your birds are in good health before attending a show. Check for any specific health requirements or regulations for the event, and practice good hygiene during transit and at the exhibition arena.

12. How can I help my chickens acclimate to a noisy show environment?

Arrive early to allow your birds time to settle and adapt to the surroundings. Some handlers find that providing familiar items from their enclosure can help reduce stress during shows.

13. How do I know if a show is right for my exhibition bird breed?

Research the show’s breed categories and regulations to determine if your chosen breed is eligible and recognized. Competing in breed-specific shows or events can increase your chances of success, as judges will be familiar with your chosen breed’s characteristics.

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