After four years of setbacks, the Gunnedah Poultry Club revived its annual auction last Saturday. 

The day had promised to bring people from around NSW, Queensland and Victoria to the Poultry Pavilion at the Gunnedah Showground. 

Featured among the birds were different breeds of purebred chickens, ducks and turkeys.

Angus Barlow from Ballimore Auction was the agent for the day.

The total lot was 137 which Chris Mammen from the Gunnedah Poultry Club was happy with.

“In previous years we had up to 300 lots entered [and] as I said 137 lots this year which is still a pretty good sale,” he said.

All animals purchased came as pairs or trios so buyers could breed the poultry immediately. 

The club decided last year to bring the auction back in an attempt to gain a crowd in the pavilion.

“We sort of relied on social media mainly to get the word out that we’re back on deck again and there has been quite a bit of enquiry across the board as far as that goes,” he said.

The event had been on hiatus due to multiple reasons.

“The agent that was running it before had retired … and then obviously COVID hit and there’s been other online avenues with people selling fowls and that sort of thing.”

The poultry club is hoping to continue the auctions as a yearly fundraiser again.

This year’s auction raised money for the Westpac Rescue Helicopter.

The Gunnedah support group had run the canteen, with all proceeds going toward the group.

The poultry club also fundraises money through entry fees to aid in financing its upcoming show.

Columbian Wyandotte chickens

Stacey Chapman was there as a local seller and was considering purchasing.

Stacey had first begun buying chickens at a previous Gunnedah Poultry Club auction before the hiatus.

Her family breeds Columbian Wyandotte chickens, with its first breeding pair purchased from Jason Harris.

“They are an addictive sort of animal. I’d never would have thought I was into chooks as much as I am,” she said.

Stacey was selling pairs of pullets of the Columbian Wyandotte.

The Gunnedah Times asked Stacey if she believed the auctions were missed and she agreed.

“Definitely, it’s a social thing,” she said.

“It’s a real family community which is ideal because we have two young children and no one really competes against each other because you got to work towards a standard. So, there’s really just cheeky banter among each other. It’s not a rivalry sort of thing.

“At the core of it, it is for everyone.”

Chris and Stacey mentioned the auction as an ideal way for beginners to join the community.

“It’s a pretty good event if anyone is interested in getting into purebred poultry for showing. It is a good spot to come and get your hands on some good bloodlines of chooks,” Chris said.

“I think the vendors are some of the best in the industry so for anyone new coming, I think the best advice would be to look at those who do well here in the poultry shows and you’re going to find it here today,” Stacey said.

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