Chook expo flies the coop

Ebony Stead holding Betty, a silver-laced wyandotte hen, at the Chook Expo at the showgrounds.
Ebony Stead holding Betty, a silver-laced wyandotte hen, at the Chook Expo at the showgrounds. Leigh Jensen

CHOOKS and ducks attracted hundreds of people to Coffs Harbour Showground on Saturday, at a Poultry Expo.

“It was beyond my wildest dreams,” organiser John Arnett said of the interest in the event. “I didn’t know what to expect but I was optimistic and told Pat to put out 30 chairs.”

He said the poultry pavilion was packed all morning and breeders and exhibitors fielded a wide variety of questions over several hours.

A talk on general diseases in fowls by veterinarian Dr Mat Grabovszky from Rose Avenue Veterinary Hospital attracted keen interest and questions on topics ranging from feather-picking to fowls eating foam boxes.

David Vaughan’s keenly-anticipated chook-washing demonstration was popular, the Rotary sausage sizzle was well patronised and rural supplier Norco representative Paul Bayliss was pleased with the level of enquiry from visitors.

The organiser’s one concern was that the children, who he had wanted to especially cater for and who were well-represented, “probably got a bit lost in the crowd,” Mr Arnett said.

“One lady, the wife of a poultry breeder, said to me ‘isn’t this exciting, we’ll have to do this again’.”

While still pleasantly shell-shocked by the level of interest, Mr Arnett has promised the committee will do it again next year, but next time with a different theme.

The matter will be discussed at the next meeting of the Coffs Harbour Poultry Club in early February, when the club meets to organise the annual Coffs Harbour Poultry Show, which will be held on June 4, 2011.

Mr Arnett said he wanted to thank all those involved with promoting, organising and running Saturday’s expo. “Everyone played their part,” he said.

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