The topic of becoming a licensed poultry judge is actually brought up very often, especially while clerking with people at shows. I would like to encourage and try to help anyone that has the inclination to start investigating the process.
Here are seven tips to help start your journey on becoming a licensed judge for the American Poultry Association:
- Start by reading the Standard of Perfection, over and over. After a while things will begin to stick in your brain.
- Visit, clerk, work with as many people who will let you. Offer to clerk at shows, it may not always be the best method to learn but it helps the show out. After the judging is finished, visit with the judge and breeders to gain more information and experience with many breeds of poultry. This will all help you start to get a feel for the process of judging.
- Offer to judge smaller fairs, 4-H shows and lawn shows. Get your name out there that you are available to judge and working on becoming a licensed judge. Start getting experience every chance you have!
- Get accepted into the APA Judge’s Apprentice Program; this is the first official step towards becoming a licensed judge
- Continue to read and study the Standard of Perfection, work at memorizing the Scale of Points and other details.
- Observe how judges go through their judging process. Watch their style, patterns and emphasis as they judge, and start developing yours.
- Learn how to make the judging experience excellent for you, the exhibitors, show management, and the actual birds. At the end of the day we all are part of this hobby because we are passionate about poultry, so do your part as a judge or clerk in maintaining that enthusiasm.
The most important aspect of judging is presenting an honest, unbiased opinion.
By Bart Pals