4-H’ers Test Their Knowledge at Regional Poultry Judging Contest

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Which came first, the chicken or the egg? Our Smith County 4-H Poultry Judging participants may not know the answer to that age-old question, but they sure do know a lot about chickens and eggs!

In the weeks leading up to the Central Region Poultry Judging Contest on Thursday, September 28, 2023, our 4-H’ers learned how to evaluate live birds for their laying capacity, how to grade eggs by evaluating their interior, exterior, and broken-out quality, how to identify different meat parts, and how to grade those parts as well as whole chicken carcasses for quality. Our 4-H’ers also learned how to identify defects in further processed poultry products like chicken nuggets and chicken patties.

The various components of the Poultry Judging contest help our 4-H’ers develop their critical thinking skills, be better stewards of their own poultry flocks at home, and even prepare them for future careers in the agriculture industry.

Eight of our outstanding 4-H’ers traveled to Murfreesboro to test their knowledge at the regional contest.  Approximately 150 individuals competed in this contest, and Smith County came away with quite a few awards!

Our Junior Team was made up of Charlotte Driver, Clay Driver, and Aubrey Hicks. Charlotte placed 6th in her division. Our Junior High Team, which was made up of Emmy Bibbings, Tana Harville, Turner Harville, and Owen Meeks, placed 1st in their division. Emmy placed 5th, Turner placed 6th, and Tana placed 8th overall. Easton Bibbings competed as an individual in the Senior High division and placed 12th overall.

Gabe Harville, who represented Smith County and Tennessee as a member of our 2022 National 4-H Poultry Judging Team, did not compete this year but was invited back to help with the contest.

Congratulations to all of these fine young people on a job well done!

If you have any questions about how to get involved in Poultry Judging or any other aspect of the 4-H Poultry project, please call the Smith County office of the University of Tennessee Extension at 615-735-2900 or email rpetty@utk.edu.

Group picture of nine 4-H Poultry Judging competitors

Back Row (L to R): Turner Harville, Tana Harville, Owen Meeks, Easton Bibbings, Gabe Harville

Front Row (L to R): Aubrey Hicks, Charlotte Driver, Emmy Bibbings, Clay Driver

A group of four 4-H'ers show off their ribbons, medals, and a 1st place plaque

Congratulations to our 1st Place Junior High Team!

A female 4-H'er grins and holds a up a green ribbon

Charlotte Driver smiles and poses with her 6th place ribbon.