Breed clubs organize their member breeders to advocate for their breed or variety. Breeders must have been APA members for at least five years. Those advocating for the breed’s recognition must submit a written account of the breed’s history and the proposed standard description. They must produce affidavits from at least five breeders who have raised the breed for at least five years, affirming that 50 percent or more of the offspring grow up close to type.
Birds of the breed applying for recognition must be shown at APA shows at least twice each year for two years. At least four hens, four pullets, four cocks and four cockerels must be shown.
Judges then submit their opinions of the breed and a qualifying meet is held. No fewer than 50 birds must be shown at the meet. Judges expect the birds to resemble each other closely, to establish the breed type. Birds should come from at least those five breeders who champion the breed.
Walt Leonard, chairman of the APA’s Standard Revision Committee, talked with me about breeds and varieties that have achieved recognition recently, and others that are working on being recognized in the future.
Breeds that have recently succeeded in being added to the APA Standard include the Black Copper, Wheaten and White varieties of Marans; the Blue Wheaten variety of Old English Game Bantam; the Splash variety of Cochin; Ginger Red variety of Modern Game; Self Blue variety of Bearded Silkie; the American Serama; the Ko Shamo; and the Nankin.
Although not previously recognized in the U.S., the Marans, Serama, Ko Shamo and Nankin have standards in other countries.
Bev Davis' lovely rooster
Brenda Gillat's Silkie at the ABA Feathersite's photo of a Splash Cochin Ginger Red Modern Game from the Modern Game Promotional Society
A Nankin rooster from the Livestock Conservancy
A pair of Wheaten Ko Shamos from Backyard Chickens
Jerry Schexnayder's Seramas