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Annual Rare Breed Poultry and Waterfowl Show another success for Heligan

The Lost Gardens of Heligan hosted their second Rare Breed Poultry and Waterfowl Show on Sunday 17th November and it certainly was another success.

The show took place in the traditional setting of The Barn, which had been transformed into a stage worthy of any rare breed. The elegant drapes from Heligan Harvest edged the ceilings, whilst foliage and ivy picked straight from The Garden laced the walls.

72 unique birds made their way to The Lost Gardens to be judged by, not only a panel of expert judges, but the general public too. Word must have spread quickly amongst the community about last year’s show, as 20 more entries were made this year than in 2018. Many comments were made about the variety of breeds this year. Several visitors explained they had never seen some of species before.

This year, Heligan added the category ‘Visitor’s Champion’, which allowed the audience to have their own say in who should win. Over 300 votes were cast (notably, the ducks were more popular than the chickens this year!) and the winner was a stunning female Buff Back Goose, owned by Peter Hayford. She is said to have caught everyone’s attention as soon as they entered the room. Her regal attitude and striking beauty secured her the title.

The overall Show Champion was an Old English Pheasant Fowl and the Reserve Champion was a Welsh Harlequin Duck. Both of which were from the same owner, Tracey Eden, who expressed how delighted she was to have the opportunity to celebrate her rare breed birds.

The idea of this show is for people to learn about rare breed poultry and waterfowl and engage with the species. The welcoming atmosphere at Heligan encourages visitors and competitors alike to chat and share knowledge. Comments about the birds range from ‘cute and fluffy’ to ‘I like the cut of his gib’, which truly illustrate that this event is for both an animal lover and professional breeder to enjoy.

The show is being increasingly recognized by the rare breed bird community across the county, as well as having the remarkable support of RBST. The Lost Gardens of Heligan certainly have the mandate to grow this unique platform and continue showcasing some exquisite species.

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