With the lifting of importation restrictions, practically all bloodlines developed in the
The following bloodlines are considered basic bloodlines, which are commonly used in game fowl breeding:
• Regular Grey
Regular Grey is said to be a combination of three grey families: the Law Grey, the Sweater Gray and the Plain head Muff Grey. Regular Grays come green legged, sometimes with yellow, silver duck wings and straight comb. They are medium to low-stationed, and are known for power and gameness. Breeders note that they are as powerful and dead game as the Blue faces. Because of these, many breeders have made Regular Grey as their foundation line.
Modern Hatches are more high flying and are faster, many coming more brainy than usual. Their usual characteristics like power and gameness, though, are still there, their blows often packing a wallop. They are basically medium-stationed and pea combed with some coming straight combed.
The Hatch blood came form Sanford Hatch who blended, as story goes, a Kearney White hackle with a Kearney Brown Red, mixing in other bloods like the Herman Duryea Boston Roundheads, Jim Thompson Mahoganies, among others, to come up with his signature Hatch fowl. From the Sandy Hatch stocks came Ted McLean’s version of Hatch that came both yellow and green-legged. Supposedly, these were the better Hatches that gave rise to the other variants of the
Pea combed, tall and white or yellow legged, and Roundheads are considered as ring generals. They are characteristically flyers and agile all-around athletes with superb cutting ability. The most famous among the many Roundheads is the Lacy Roundhead, originated by Judge Lacy. There are other Roundhead families like the Burners,
Shamos, Asils, Japs, Thais, Jolo, Basilan, Parawak – these are just some of the many types of oriental fowl. They are big headed, light-eyed, heavy boned, short and tight feathered and thickly shanked chickens. Very brainy and hardy, these chickens use an off-beat fighting style which twits the aggressive American type of game fowl. Accurate body hitters and smart side-steppers, sails are usually graded up to an eighth or even a sixteenth with the American fowl in the hope of retaining the desirable cutting and off-beat traits of the Orientals in the resulting battlecrosss. Either you love them or you hate them – that’s the Oriental Fowl.
Today, one is not considered “in” if he is not breeding the Sweater fowl. Yellow legged, pea combed high stationed, sleek body conformation and with their characteristic pumpkin-orange hackle feathers and swarming offensive fighting style – Sweaters were popularized in the
Kearney White hackle is one of the most solid bloodlines used as foundation stocks because of its unquenchable do-or-die gameness. Straight-combed red with the characteristic white under hackle feathers, the Kearney White hackle comes yellow legged and sometimes spangle-feathered. This bloodline is one of the gamest among the many White hackle subfamilies and is used only for infusion purposes to prop up any floundering bloodline.
Phil Marsh is credited for creating the Butcher bloodline, which is a blend of Grove White Hackle and some Spanish fowl, the Speeder Grays. Calling them Butchers because of his occupation, Phil Marsh often fought under the entry name “Butcher Boys”.
Butchers are straight-combed red that often come white-legged with some coming yellow-legged. They are known for their accurate cutting ability and brainy fighting style, leading many experts to say “when a Butcher hits you, you are hit”. Medium to low-stationed, Butchers sometime come spangled and brass back in color, with the latter presently called Black Butchers.
• Blue face Hatch
The Blue face Hatch, a special strain of Hatches, came to be known as such because of its pale-faced appearance, which is similar to the appearance of a fowl with Avian Leucosis. Blue face Hatches are so good that their originator, Sweater McGinnis, decided to breed them some more, with some ending up with Harold Brown, Billy Ruble, Red Richardson, Percy Flowers, and William Greene and other American cocking greats. Straight-combed, green-legged and medium to low stationed, Blue faces have carved a reputation for gameness. Used mainly for foundation blood purposes, old time breeders agree that the best battle cross carries only a quarter or less of the Blue face blood.
• Brown Red
Brown Red has speed and more speed, with cutting to boot – the advantage of this dark fowl. Coming dark-legged, dark-eyed and with characteristic black feathering, this family is a sight to behold, since Brown Reds show more of the razzle-dazzle shuffling action type of fighting, although their drawback is their seeming lack of gameness and stamina. However, because of other infusions made by breeders, there already are Brown Reds that are game enough, lasting for more than 10 minutes. In the drag fight, these fighters are defensive and very calculating, uncharacteristic of a typical Brown Red.
• Lemon 84
Originated by the legend Paeng Araneta, Lemon 84 has become the base used by most
Lemon 84 (called as such because the original brood cock had leg band number 84) comes lemon hackled, pea combed or straight-combed and yellow and green-legged. Although lacking in gameness, Lemon 84 makes up for it with its almost automatic, instinctive and precise sense of timing when it clips the opponent in mid-air and throws his fatal punches or counterpunches. This is its most sought-after trait despite its medium or low station.
Eerie looking because of the feathers on its face, the Muff is known for its aggressive frontal fighting style. Muffs throw a barrage of blows with no letup or billhold. Although low-stationed, Muffs have an unerring sense of accuracy when it comes to the cutting department. Basically red in color, they come yellow-legged and pea combed. Noted breeders of this family are Billy Ruble, John Sears and Dr. John Kozura.
Pyle is a plumage color that denotes one that is not red, grey or black. Pyles come white, blue, dom, off-white, off-grey or off-red colors. They are white-legged or yellow-legged and straight or pea combed.
They are known for their high flying style and accurate cutting. Many are not deep game as Hatch or White hackle, but there are Pyles that are as game. Currently, they are crossed with the sturdy and hardy lines to hopefully strike the perfect blend of fighting characteristics.