|Posted by Rhode Island Club on May 3, 2014 at 1:25 AM|
Written for the Victorian Rhode Island Club by Blyth Bros. 1932
In breeding exhibition quality Rhode Islands chance mating cannot give any hope of guaranteed success, only careful matings should be practised and careful consideration should be given to every influence that will affect the resultant offspring.
Some cockerels resemble the male, while some pullets resemble the female. This is accepted as proof that the influence of the male is dominant with the male offspring, and the female is dominant with female offspring.
That the male has an influence over the offspring must be accepted, but just how far that influence extends must continue to be uncertain, until more definite information can be gathered. The mere fact that a line of cockerels resembles the male ancestor does not prove that this likeness is male influence. Rhode Island cockerels resemble Rhode Island males and Rhode Island pullets resemble Rhode Island females, but that all pullets or all cockerels of this breed have a likeness to a particular ancestor, can scarcely be proved at this point.
There are few strains so well established a to produce each season a few cockerels and pullets that inherit so striking an ancestral resemblance as to make possible their selection with any certainty of results.
There is, however, more evidence of parental influence through the female than the male. Strains have been established, even when males of only medium quality have been used. Failures have been frequent when using the highest grade of males with females of medium quality, but in many instances good results have been obtained from good females mated with males of indifferent quality.
Such results have occurred frequently enough to establish the belief that greater parental influence comes through the female than the male.
Such influence can be traced through every line of breeding, and in each line of domestic animal this influence can be seen.
The best results are never obtained from females of inferior quality, but marvellous results may come through the use of the highest-grade females, even though the male is not the most desirable.
A female that produces good stock should be highly prized. A few good females will, if properly mated, produce more offspring with desirable qualities than will come from a hundred hens of poor quality although of the same variety. This may occur even though the males mated with the inferior females are of better quality than those mated with the better hens. However, it is certain to occur if all the males are of a superior quality, provided the lines of breeding are not antagonistic.
Such comparisons as we have made are for the purpose of emphasising the absolute necessity of having hens of superior quality from which to produce the finest quality Rhode Islands.