January - AGM February - Mick Freeborn March 2012 - Steve Cox April 2012 - Ghalib Al-Nasser
May 2012 - YSS June 2012 - Neil Forbes July 2012 - Aviary Visit July 2012 - Ron Pearce
August 2012 - Barbeque September 2012 October 2012 - Members Show November 2012 - B&B

NORTHDOWNS BS November 2012 Bring & Buy

Our chairperson, Chris Angus-Smith, opened the meeting and welcomed everybody.  Apologies were received from Jim Lawrie, John Mullen, Andrew McKendrick, Brian & Pat Smart, and Richard & Julie Hutchins.

Everyone was advised of the forthcoming AGM and told that they had been emailed the paper work etc, although hard copies of 2012 AGM minutes were available for those without Emails:

With that John Gorrell, our President, said that after the first session of the auction he hoped everyone would enjoy the food he had provided as his President’s buffet. (We all did)!

Malcolm Freemantle then acted as our auctioneer for the evening with his normal gusto!

We raised, with your help, a total of 400.17 on the evening;  (260.40 bring & buy, a donation of 5 from Paul Gover, 50.00 for the Gerald Binks donated budgie, 10.31 refreshments and 52 raffle) and another donation of 23.00 from Mike & Sara Ball to round it up to the 400. Well done to everyone there.  The proceeds this year are up again on last year and it all helps to keep the club going in the right direction for 2013.

Everyone there seemed to enjoy the evening and many thanks go to Malcolm for his auctioneering, which went well with all items sold!


I look forward to seeing you all on Friday 25th January at 7.45pm for our AGM. Please ring me if you cannot make it and I will offer your apologies to the meeting.

We need you all to support the AGM, as it’s your chance to have a say and make a difference and perhaps take on one the many duties required to run this club!

(Any nominations for any committee position need to be returned to me prior to the AGM).

Best wishes for Christmas and the New Year.

NORTHDOWNS BS October 20th “Members Show “

The Members Show was very well supported with the number of birds exhibited.  Apologies were received from John Mullen and Richard & Julie Hutchins.

It was nice to have the company of Geoff Dell and Jeff Plummer again, defending their title. They might have missed out on a super lunch last year but they didn’t make the same mistake this year! 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 it a very enjoyable day for all.

One new member signed up on the day – Derek Ham from Four Marks near Alton.

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 President).

Our judges for the day were Gren & Pat Norris, who started by saying that Pat was going to judge the birds and Gren would give a commentary and answer any questions etc.

Once she had started judging Pat gave a very clear running evaluation, explaining the reasons for her choices.  She and Gren also explained to the audience about faults on certain birds.

They both 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. We thank Pat & Gren very much for their consideration to new members / beginners and for the way they 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:


The Presidents Salver & Rosette
10.00 Jim Lawrie 305-1 Grey Cock
BEST YOUNG BIRD IN SHOW 10.00 Jim Lawrie 305-1 Grey Cock
BEST ANY AGE IN SHOW 10.00 Tony Cash 16-1 Grey Dom Pied
BEST OPPOSITE SEX ANY AGE 10.00 Jacky Fox 10-1
BEST CHAMPION ANY AGE         Rosette 3.00 Tony Cash 16-1
BEST CHAMPION YOUNG BIRD   Rosette 5.00 Tony Cash 105-1
BEST INTERMEDIATE ANY AGE   Rosette 3.00 Jim Lawrie 203-1
BEST INTERMEDIATE YOUNG BIRD   Rosette 5.00 Jim Lawrie 305-1
BEST NOVICE BIRD Alex Whitman 510-1
BEST NOVICE ANY AGE            Rosette 3.00 Alex Whitman 416-1
BEST NOVICE YOUNG BIRD      Rosette 5.00 Alex Whitman 518-1
BEST BEGINNER BIRD Pat & Brian Smart 605-2
BEST BEGINNER ANY AGE           Rosette 3.00 Pat & Brian Smart 605-2
BEST BEGINNER YOUNG BIRD    Rosette 5.00 Pat & Brian Smart 711-1
BEST RED EYE Plate & Rosette     Pat & Brian Smart
BEST LUTINO    Plate & Rosette     N/E 214-1
Most Birds Benched - The David Angus-Smith Memorial Trophy Jim Lawrie

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 of birdie things and buy plenty, as it is our only fundraiser of the year.

Our President John Gorrell (his first year) is providing a buffet on the evening, so come and enjoy yourselves.

Thanks to our Chairperson Chris Angus Smith for providing all refreshments.

Unshowable / Flecked Bird Competition September 2012

The meeting started at 8.00pm and everyone was welcomed by our Chairperson, Chris Angus-Smith.  Apologies were received from Sue Warrington, Clive Mayers, Jacky Fox and Julie & Richard Hutchins.


Chris Angus-Smith then said a bit about our members show, which is on the 20th October, regarding the food and help that is needed in kitchen etc.


Delia Smith has offered to help as show secretary on the day with Tony Cash.


There were no winners or losers of the ‘any unshowable / flecked bird competition’, which was overseen by me & Nigel Darley. We discussed the merits and pitfalls of the birds in front of us if used in a breeding program.  Also, various members were asked what they would pair certain birds to, which made very interesting comments from other members!


The raffle was held during the break and all were deep in conversation regarding their birds / breeding etc.

Bio security was maintained during the evening.

Northdowns at Bucks & Berks Barbeque - August 2012

There was no meeting in August for the Bucks & Berks, but a BBQ was held at Alex Whitman’s in Twyford and was attended by (32) people. Those present were a mixture of breeders and partners from Bucks & Berks BA, Northdowns BS and South Hants BS and other guests invited by Alex.  This was all paid for by Alex personally and not taken out of club funds! (So many thanks Alex)

During the afternoon most people drifted in & out of the bird room (as you do!), having a look at the birds and discussing all aspects of the hobby etc.

Luckily, the weather held out for us and it was a great afternoon enjoyed by all.

There was plenty of food, drink and ‘budgie’ talk and gossip.

John Bishop said a few words of thanks to Alex & Judy and his family, especially Paul his son the chef ably assisted by his good lady Sara who worked so hard to make it a success, and thanked them for hosting the event.

Alex would like to thank everyone for traveling up on Saturday; he said they had a thoroughly enjoyable afternoon and sincerely hoped that everyone else did too.

Judging with Ron Pearce - July 2012

The meeting started at 8.00pm and everyone was welcomed by our Chairperson, Chris Angus-Smith.  Apologies were received from Gerald Binks, Delia Smith, Clive Mayers, Dee Selby, John Mullen, Jacky Fox and Julie & Richard Hutchins.

We had two new members join - Sue Warrington and Paul Gover, who were both most welcome.

With the birds benched (9 pairs ), Ron started by giving a brief of the format for the evening and by asking everyone to pair up the birds as if they were the only birds in their stud.  He gave us 30 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 Malcolm Freemantle / Ricky Watts to beginners like Paul Gover and Sue Warrington.   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 Pieds and YF 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, rosettes were awarded for the best cock & hen.

With that we all thanked Ron in the usual way for his professional commentary and the advice / banter 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) 

Aviary Visit to Ron Payne, Swindon - July 2012

Neil Forbes Avian Vet - June 2012

The meeting was called to order at 8.00pm and everyone was welcomed by our Vice Chairperson, Graham Cornwall.  Apologies were received from Clive Mayers, Pam & Malcolm Freemantle, Jacky Fox, Ron Pearce, John Mullen, Ron Payne, Dee Selby, Chris Angus-Smith and Gerald Binks.

NeilForbesWifeGrayhamCornwall.jpg (32155 bytes)
Graham Cornwall with Neil Forbes and his wife

Graham then introduced “Neil Forbes - Avian Vet”, our guest speaker for the evening.  Neil started by explaining that he had had 25 years experience as a pioneer of avian medicine, as well as working with a wide range of exotic animals, and had written and published various books and articles on avian medicine.  He had also given lectures to international conferences on this subject in many parts of the world and was currently the President of the European College of Zoological Medicine

Neil has received the following awards: MSD AgVet Trophy and Award, Centenary Award, Mackellar Award, BSAVA Melton Award, BVA William Hunting Award and Lafeber Avian Practitioner Award and the Gerlach Senior Award.   His company is called: “Great Western Exotic Vets”

He went on to explain many of his exploits over the years, home and abroad, which were very interesting. I have itemised below the main subjects he discussed on his power point presentation!

Infectious Conditions: a patient may have an infectious condition, without it being a disease. Such a condition only becomes a ‘disease’ if the patient suffers as a consequence of the infection and this is not always the case. The fact that a patient has an infection does not mean it is contagious, i.e. it is only contagious, if the patient has the ability to pass on the infectious agent.

Any avian patient should be considered infectious until proven otherwise.

There are simply too many serious infectious diseases, which may be clinical or sub-clinical, for any case to be automatically considered safe, until proven to be so. We can consider diseases such as Avian influenza, Chlamydopila, Psittacine Beak and Feather Disease and the Herpes virus, all of which can be present in an avian patient, without any overt signs and yet still present serious risks of ‘infection’ to other birds, either by direct contact, fomite spread or, most serious of all, by air spread.

Why does it matter if it is infectious?: not only is it essential to determine if it is infectious and, if so, what the pathogen is, in order to ensure the patient gets the very best treatment as soon as possible, but perhaps even more important is the need to protect other patients and the biosecurity status of your facilities against contamination.

How do we recognise if a bird is suffering from an infectious condition?: all clinicians are familiar with the signs of a ‘sick bird’, fluffed up, loss of condition or weight, change of appetite and water consumption, change of normal position, perching place or stance, change in level of activity, standing on two legs rather than one, possibly even hanging onto the bars of the cage with his beak, loss or change of voice, respiratory stridor, tail bobbing, faecal changes, abnormal discharges (mouth eyes, nares, ears, preen gland, cloaca), lying down more, CNS signs, etc.. However the presence of ‘sick bird’ clinical signs do not imply the bird is suffering from an infectious disease.

Whilst having our tea break Neil was busy chatting to members about various problems etc.

Genetic: feather dusters and straw feather are two genetic abnormalities affecting budgerigars. The names are descriptive of the visual appearance of affected birds. Feather cysts are common in certain breed lines of canaries and budgies.

A genetic susceptibility is postulated. Many other psittacines suffer feather cysts.

Neil finished about 10 minutes before our time slot was up for a questions and answer session which was mind blowing to say the least!!  Some of those facts are below!

It is very important to vary the size of your perches to avoid scaring /sores on the feet of your birds.

The FM virus will stay in your bird room/shed /loft whatever you like to call it for up to 2 years! (2 types of FM)

The only way to completely get rid of the virus is to cull all affected birds and their family.

F10 is the best treatment for most things and is not harmful in anyway.  He mentions others that were not as good and could be detrimental to your health as well as the birds. (Being diplomatic)

We could have gone on for hours, but the clock beat us.

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

Young Stock Show - May 2012

The meeting was called to order at 8.00pm and everyone was welcomed by our Chairperson, Chris Angus-Smith. Apologies were received from John Mullen, Mike Ball, Andrew McKendrick, and Julie & Richard Hutchins.

Steve Bailey, our judge for the evening, started judging the birds (26) 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.

Because it was a young stock show the classes were grouped together ‘cock and hen’ to simplify the judging and Steve 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. 

Whilst judging Steve 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.

As the judging went on Steve 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.

At the end of the judging Steve asked for any comments from the floor with regard to the judging and afterwards 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 our show manager who did a great job again and thanks to Jacky Fox for helping in the kitchen!

Our congratulations to the main winners of the evening:

  • A. Whitman: Best bird in show – DF Yellow Spangle Hen
  • T. Cash : Best Opposite Sex -  Cin Green Cock   
  • T. Cash :  Best champion –  Cin Green Cock  
  • George Wilson :  Best intermediate – Dark Green Hen
  • A. Whitman: Best Novice – DF Yellow Spangle Hen
  • Dee Selby: Best Beginner – Sky Dom Pied Cock
  • Best Barhead : Nigel Darley  – Cin Grey Green Spangle Cock

We would also like to thank all (24) of those that helped with the setting up and removal of the trestles, plus other jobs, which makes life a lot easier. We had two more members paid up on the night and it was also nice to see Mick Freeborn again who travelled up with Steve Bailey.

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

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

April 2012 - Ghalib Al-Nasser

The meeting was called to order at 8.00pm and everyone was welcomed by our Chairperson, Chris Angus-Smith, who also welcomed a new member, Andrew Poole from Alton. Apologies were received from Ron Payne, Andrew McKendrick, Dee Selby, Julie & Richard Hutchins, and John Gorrell. Chris then introduced our speaker for the evening, Ghalib Al-Nasser, and congratulated him on his re-election to the BS council.

Ghalib started by saying that the evening’s presentation was divided into 3 parts, dealing with breeding genes of the dominant, sex-linked and recessive genes of varieties and was called:

“Specialist Varieties in Budgerigars”

He then carried on by giving a profile of himself and the varieties of bird he had bred and kept over the years and then showed pictures of his new bird room, which is 32`x 12` with an added 8` x 8` operations room! It also has a 12` x 6` outside flight and he uses new plastic cages, which were made by Keith Gladwell from Riverside Aviaries (now retired)

He said that the two varieties he was going to start with were the pied families.

This variety, when bred to the correct marking, is very beautiful to look at but with the arrival of the Australian Dominant Pied variety in the United Kingdom in 1958 and the beauty of the initial Australian Pieds with the band across the chest pushed the Continental Clearflight into the background.

The Danish Recessive Pied appeared in 1932, but it was not until 1940 that a strain of these Clearflighted birds was established in the aviaries of Mon. M R Raemaker of Belgium. Initially this bird only had a few patches of clear areas, but with selective breeding Mon. Raemaker was able to establish the Clearflights as we know them today.

The factor that controls the production of the Clearflight is variable in its expression; hence many birds that are produced today differ from the ideal described by the Budgerigar Society Colour Standards produced in 1994.

The ideal depicted by the Budgerigar Society requires seven visible clear flights and clear tail with no spillage of the mask into the body colour but exhibits produced today seldom show the correct marking.

Since his early days in the Budgerigar fancy (early seventies), he had heard of the American mutation, the Clearbody. The late Cein Roberts of Lancing, Sussex had seen the variety and was in the process of importing some to the U.K., but that process never materialised. His nearest description to the variety was a futuristic artist's impression by R A Vowles, which appeared in Dr M D S. Armour's book Exhibition Budgerigars. 

Dr Armour predicted the appearance of a variety with a clear body, normal wing markings and black tail and referred to it as a Laced Yellow.

The Clearbody originated in America in the early 1950's. The two types are the Texas Clearbody, because it originated in the State of Texas, and the Easley Clearbody, named after C F Easley from the State of California who established the variety. The two varieties differ in both appearance and breeding pattern.

Ghalib said that whilst he was in Australia in 1994 on his lecturing and judging tour with the late Mick Wheeler, he came across the Australian version of the Clearbody in Sydney, which they say has been in existence since the early fifties.

The Texas Clearbody is more common and was first imported to the UK in 1989 by Jeff Attwood and then to Europe. The Budgerigar Society provided a provisional colour standard for this variety in 1997. The general appearance of this variety in green and blue is similar to normal but with the following differences: the flight feathers are pale grey instead of black; the body colour is suffused and may vary in intensity from minimum through to almost 50% of normal body colour depth and increase in intensity downwards and towards the rump area.

The Texas Clearbody is sex-linked recessive in its breeding inheritance but has an unusual relationship when paired to Ino (Lutino and Albino) as it was found to act as dominant. Because of this relationship an Ino cannot be masking a Clearbody as it can with other varieties and a normal cannot be split for both Clearbody and Ino, yet a Clearbody can be split for Ino.

It is worth knowing that all the Normals and split cocks for either Clearbody or Ino are indistinguishable and only by test mating can their identity be revealed.

Ghalib said he was delighted to have met with Tom Easley at the 1998 All American Show in San Diego and had quite a long chat with him about the variety, which was established by his father over forty years ago. Mr Easley did inform him that the present Easley Clearbody did not resemble the mutation his father established.

Mr Easley also established that the variety is dominant in its breeding pattern and can be produced in both sexes from any mating of which one partner must be visual.

Because of the dominant gene, the variety can be established in both a single and double factor. The double factor version tends to have a much diluted body colour.

The Crested Budgerigar, which he is well known for, is neither a recent mutation, an abnormal feather growth nor in any way related to "feather-dusters". However, it is a naturally occurring mutation which owes nothing to man for its appearance, except for its development.

Examples of the Crest were first imported into this country in 1938 by Mrs R Brown of Morecambe, Lancs, from an Australian strain. They were breeding freely by 1938.

The presentation also covered the Spangle, Yellowface, Ino, Lacewing, and slate (all sex-linked) we were going onto the recessive genes when------------------------- we ran out of time and decided to call this meeting Part 1 and I will arrange another time for part 2 in the near future.

March 2012 - Steve Cox of the S&G Cox

The meeting was called to order at 8.05pm and everyone was welcomed by our Chairperson, Chris Angus-Smith, which included a welcome to John Birkett a former member of the Southdown’s BS and a new member, Andy Poole from Alton.  Apologies were received from Jeff Plummer, Geoff Dell, Dee Selby, Ron Payne, Julie & Richard Hutchins, Alex Whitman, Lee Benton, Peter Christmas and Jacky Fox. (10)

Chris then introduced our speaker for the evening, Steve Cox of the S&G Cox partnership, who was accompanied by Neil Johnson from Dorset.

Steve said that the theme of the evening’s talk was breeding with, and how best to use in his opinion, an outcross with Lutinos.

Steve said he was still in partnership with his father (although he has hardly anything to do with the birds now) and told us about his history over the years in the hobby. He spoke about his love of the Lutino budgerigar and all related aspects of the showing and meetings / social side such as this evening.

He said initially he had purchased Lutinos from three studs; Mr and Mrs Whatley, I Saunders, and M and L Clarke. When these lines were paired together they produced very good youngsters. He later found out that all of the above had purchased Lutinos from the late Reg Watts of Weston-Super-Mare, so what he had originally thought were unrelated birds, were in fact, all related.

This, perhaps, was the reason he had been so successful in producing the quality Lutinos he has today.

Steve said he had recently had a measure of success with Normal varieties, which have originated from Arthur Piper stock and others as he does ‘swaps’, finds it’s the best way to obtain a decent outcross. His own preference is for the Light Green but he keeps most other colours in Normal and Opaline and also has some Dominant Pieds and Dilutes.

The latest outcross he has introduced is a DF White spangle hen with lots of feather around the head, paired to one of his better Lutino cocks, which has resulted in good Lutino hens and Spangle split Lutino cocks.  These have subsequently been paired back into their main stud / lines.

Rick Watts

He said he has found it very difficult to acquire a good quality Lutino outcross, so that is why he varies from what (some say) is the conventional way to improve his stud. He pairs up 41 cages, of which 6-10 pairs may be Normals (not Lutino pairings) and the rest are Lut x Lut pairings.
With his normal pairings he is not worried what colour they are as long as they carry the desired feature he is looking for and can be used to improve the Luts. In the old days breeders would say not to pair Cinnamon X Cinnamon or two Greens together, but that was proved to be bad advice etc.

Steve said he believed strongly in the genetics of the Budgerigar in his pairings and had been proved right over the years, as the evidence was in his show results and the quality of stock he now has. Over the past years there has been many clever stock men who have succeeded through using their skills on genetics / pairings to produce that special bird, such as Alf Ormerod and Harry Bryan and the current day breeders, Joe Mannes in Germany and Daniel Lutoft in Switzerland.

When pairing up he has used all three ways of pairing ie: Cock in first, Hen in first or in together and found no real difference in results because if they are breeding fit they will produce the goods. As he flights his birds together, when it’s time to pair up he cages them separately to access them and make sure that no two birds carry the same fault in their respective lines.

“Part two” of the evening was headed by Neil Johnson, with mainly a question & answer session with lots of banter between all there.  Neil commented that he bred most rare varieties but no “Clearwings (motioning towards Malcolm Freemantle!). Malcolm immediately replied that he didn’t try to breed the difficult varieties then!

Once again, everyone showed their appreciation to the Speakers for a very entertaining evening. (32)

February 2012 - Mick Freeborn

The meeting was called to order at 8.00pm and everyone was welcomed by our Chairperson, Chris Angus-Smith.  Apologies were received from Gerald Binks, Dee Selby, John Mullen, Terry Smith, Jacky Fox and Brian Smart.  Chris then introduced our speaker for the evening, Mick Freeborn.

Mick started by telling us about his history over the years in the hobby and his love of the budgerigar and all related aspects of the showing and meetings / social side such as this evening. He said that the theme of tonight’s talk was about the last 20 months, since buying Mick Deller`s stud of 168 birds.

When he brought in the last stud they went straight into the flights after he had fogged the bird room. He also fogged the bird room again several times after they were settled in, to prevent any diseases. All birds that were put into the flights were in good condition and any in poor health didn’t make it.

Mick said he had had problems getting the Ivor Densely and Neil Harvey studs he had brought in to start breeding so he broke down all pairs ready to re-pair later in the year, as he didn’t want to go through the same with the Deller birds.

By this time, with that many birds and some still breeding, it became a major job to sort out straight away as he was carrying too much stock and wanted to avoid over stressing the birds. He also wanted to pair up as many pairs as possible to get some babies on the perches with the new bloodline.

He mentioned the various studs he has bought over the years and the influence that bringing in different types of feather and deportment has had on his stud, which he has used to enhance his own bloodlines and produce the quality stud of birds he now has.  He said using the Lutolf birds has changed his style of bird, with a longer feather and a much bigger bird overall.

His feeding has been bumped up with more oats and soaking seeds. He uses an additional tonic seed alongside a good quality mixture, which has oil added ingredients.  This is given to all of the birds, in separate dishes together with plain water.

Mick said his main two birds were a Light Green L125 07 bred cock and a Grey Green L125 289-07, which Mick Deller had brought in from Switzerland as barheads from Daniel Lutolf.  Mick said the Grey Green had bred for Mick Deller and won best Any Age in 2008 before he bought the stud and went on to produce many quality young and also win a Best in Show.

Mick said judging was a great part of the hobby for him, which he still enjoys and will carry on doing so as long as his health allows him.

In 2010 he judged 11 shows, cut down to 6 in 2011 but is back up to 7 for 2012, commenting that the most shows he had judged in a year was 21!

(Never again)

Mick has a knack for remembering most of his birds and the ring numbers and what lines / parents they are from, which surprises a lot of breeders who visit him.

He said that when showing you need to spend a lot of time preparing the birds if you want to win on the show bench. By catching them up 6 weeks before a show and spraying them for feather condition also this will allow them to put on weight / substance and give you time to examine them to check tails / spots coming through.

Mick went on to relate a couple of judging stories at various shows over the years which, whilst very amusing, could be potentially political as well, so no names mentioned! He said he does not have any problems with fertility or breeding numbers, which he puts down to the soft food mixture he uses:

  • 3 Slices of bread (brown or white)

  • 1 Tablespoon of Soya

  • 1 Tablespoon of Weatgerm Fennel

  • lb Soaking seed

  • Broccoli (4 crowns)

  • 5 Slices of Fennell

  • 2 Tablespoons of dried seaweed

  • 1 Teaspoon of Selenavite 

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

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

A.G.M.  January 2012

The meeting was called to order at 8.05pm and everyone was welcomed by our Chairperson, Chris Angus-Smith.  Apologies were received from Ron Payne, Jeffrey Plummer, Geoff Dell, Dee Selby, John Mullen, Tony Jeffery and Ricky Watts.

Northdowns Minutes of AGM 2011

These had been sent to all members before the meeting and there were no comments:

(Minutes as true account of AGM 2011: Proposed by Jim Lawrie – Seconded by Alex Whitman)

The President’s Report

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.   He also mentioned that the programme for this year was looking good as well.

Installation of New President 

Malcolm Freemantle then asked John Gorrell to come forward and receive the Chain of President for the coming year. John said it was an honour to be President and hoped he would make a good job of it

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 gave a big thank you to Julie Hutchins, the unsung hero, for all the work she does in the kitchen, also to Richard Hutchins for all of the trophies he has donated to the club, which will make a considerable saving to the clubs funds.

So, with good attendances at the meetings because we have good speakers, we are heading in right direction, with a full programme for 2012 and the 2013 programme almost complete.

John Gorrell.JPG (2000256 bytes)

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 5 new members during the year and now had 59 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 2012 and beyond.

He confirmed that the hall was booked for the year 2012 (and 2013 provisionally) on the last Friday of each month, with the exception of September which is on the 21st as this was pre-booked before the BS changed their date back to November for the Club Show.  Also, the October meeting, being the Members show, would be held on Saturday 20th 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 2010, the income had gone up slightly and the expenditure had also gone up, but we still made a profit.

(Accounts Proposed by Graham Cornwall – Seconded by Richard Hutchins)

Election of Officers:

John Gorrell took over the chair for the election of Chairperson.

Thank you for all of your support. The AGM finished at 8.40 and we then had a tea break ready for part 2, which was on breeding problems. This threw up all the usual problems we all have year on year.