anyone got any info on the bred? very accurate cutting and always hitting the other chicken in the head hence the name
but wondering any background info
anyone got any info on the bred? very accurate cutting and always hitting the other chicken in the head hence the name
but wondering any background info
Well, I don't claim to be an expert in these types of fowl, but I do own some and I know a little bit about them.
There really is no breed such as the "Cuban Headhunter", that is just the way a certain breeder markets his fowl.
MOST fowl of Spanish decent are known to be head hunters. This is advantageous when fighting in the postiza and naked heel but could be a disadvantage when fighting in gaff or knife. To be honest, I feel it is a bit of a misnomer to label Spanish and Cuban fowl as "headunters". These fowl usually hit to the body upon the first couple of breaks. Once the fight progresses (and sometimes it never does) and the fowl square off at close quarters is when the Spanish fowl start to hit to the neck and head of the opponent. Again, this is not ALWAYS the case.
Most Cubans and Spanish fowl are extremely accurate, good cutters. They are generally game to the core too.
I know a lot of purists wont want to hear this, but I would imagine that most, if not all modern American Game Fowl have a good dosage of Spanish and Cuban blood in them. Albanys have a very good dosage from the intitial setting for example.
Advantages of Cubans/Spanish: Good cutters. Accurate. Game. Generally high breaking salto type fighters. Cross well with just about anything.
Disadvantages: Low weight. Need to seperate stags very young.
i asked the man about the cuban headhunters and he said they were from a man in cuba this birds come white spangle and red and black all in the same breed this man has been breeding these for years and i have watched him and he will still get these color combinations out of pure fowl
Yes Keysaw. That is true. Spanish fowl throw all sorts of strange colors. I started cocking in Spain over 30 years ago and I can tell you that the very last thing that a Spanish (and you have to think that the same mentality was imparted on the Cubans)breeder will worry about is color. They simply do not care. Of course if they have a handsome fowl they will admire it, but they breed solely for game fowl that can give and take a terrific amount of punishment.
A lot of people SAY that is how they breed, but few actually practice what they preach in reality.
If you can get your hands on a copy of this April's Feathered Warrior magazine they have an exerpt from Finsterbusch's "Cockfighting all over the World" about Spanish fowl. Makes for some interesting reading.
Cubans of course are Spanish fowl in origin.
I have a Cuban headhunter Hen she is Spangled and peacomb
The Spanish I've seen are a little different from the cubans I've seen. The Spanish are a little bigger in body and come mostly creole(Dom) and white or Pyle. The cubans come in all those colours and also red. Yellow or white legs only. Having said that yours may be either and look a little different.
In style the Spanish were more shifty would hit the body also but 80 % the head. Cubans I've seen hit 99% to the head and are the most accurate I've seen. Their drawback is they both don't take a body shot well. They are worth crossing and add cut and shiftiness.
They are true game fowl.
Who are some of the more prominent "Spanish" breeders here in the U.S. ?
Gustavo Sanchez: Breeder Extraordinaire
Wherever cockfighters gather, the discussion sooner or later turns to the subject of who has the best cocks and who is a first class breeder. Although opinions may vary, everyone takes it for granted that there really are superior lines of fowl and superior breeders. Not many want to claim that breeding is a crapshoot and that all lines of fowl are the same.
In my case, since taking up the sport seriously in the sixties, I have made every effort to meet and discuss breeding with the men I considered the real pro's . These include men like the late Frank Shy (Naragansett), Ted McLean, Floyd Gurley, and Harry Parr, to name a few who are recognized as being top breeders by the fraternity in general. For those like me who fight postiza fowl, of basically Spanish and Cuban lines, there is one breeder who stands head and shoulders above the rest. Wherever I went in Latin America and the Carribbean, his fowl have contributed to the development of the outstanding lines. Recently, there have been some very fine articles in the Gamecock on Spanish fowl. This article is an attempt to give you more information on the the best breeder of the last 30 years of Spanish fowl. But first, I would like to discuss what we mean by Spanish fowl. The use of the word "Spanish" is currently applied to all postiza-type fowl no matter where they come from. Many readers of this magazine continually mention the Jerezano fowl. These fowl come from a specific area of Spain, Jerez de la Frontera. It is believed that in this region English fowl were crossed into the Spanish to make the Jerezano. This is one reason why Jerezano fowl come in so many different colors. Other Spanish fowl are normally Red or Grey. There are many other areas of Spanish fowl that are just as famous as the Jerezano
Many believe that some of the best of all this type of fowl came from the canary islands. Since the seventies and eighties, many areas in the Caribean. including Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, Martinquie, and St. Martin have quit importing fowl from Spain. They simply did not give us the results we expected. Many were too slow and many ran off. In the sixties, tens of thousands of fowl were imported into Puerto Rico alone. For the last 10 years, I doubt if 100 Spanish fowl have been brought to the island. Since the late 1940's, the best fowl brought to Puerto Rico have come from Cuba. The Cuban fowl, according to various authors is the combination of many bloodlines, including that of American strains brought to the island during the Spanish-American War at the turn of the century. It is said that Teddy Roosevelt and his Rough Riders imported many, many gamecocks to Cuba. Be that as it may, Cuba outlawed the entry of Spanish fowl into the island and they developed a fowl known for its strength, speed, gameness, and cutting ability. Mr. Tin Echevarria began importing Cuban fowl into Puerto Rico in 1947 and since then this has been the fowl of choice in Puerto Rico. For many gaff fighters, Spanish fowl are not considered good in the gaff. However, in his book, Forty Years with Fighting Cocks Andy O'Conner mentions that Spanish blood entered into the making of most Southern speed fowl. He also mentions that in England and Ireland the weapon of choice when cock fighting began to grow as a sport was the natural heel. I mention this to point out that maybe Spanish fowl may still be of value to Gaff and knife fighters. The great ability of Spanish fowl is their incredible balance and ability to cut. It may be that they are too thin for the Gaff, but no one will force you to fight them pure in that weapon. I know of a few good cock fighters who have experimented successfully with Spanish fowl for the short and 1 1/2 inch heels. When Castro came into power, he banned the sport of cock fighting in Cuba. However, he knew the value of the market in cocks so he took control of the best fowl and began breeding them under government control as a way to generate income. Under these conditions, the very best breeders in Cuba decided to leave the country rather than submit to the Communist dictatorship. Among those who left were Rene Valle, Pedro Suarez, Mario Leon and Juan "Bache" Cancio, to name a few. One man who planned his exit from Cuba very carefully was Gustavo Sanchez. His son, Gustavito, and his older brother, Mimio, left Cuba in 1964. Gustavo was able to send via Mexico six of his best brood cock and 12 to 14 hens to his family in Miami. Although Cuba allowed the exportation of cocks, they did not allow hens to leave the island, an idea picked up from Spain. However, the man who was in charge of giving out the permits was a cockfighter who knew Gustavo since the official was a little boy.
He made it possible for Gustavo to ship out his best hens. In this way, when Gustavo arrived in Miami, he was ready to continue the record he had begun in Cuba. Born in Pinar del Rio 1915, Don Gustavo began breeding and fighting gamecocks in 1938. He began with a cock from Chin Chin Sierra and a hen given to him by Florentino Valle, the father of Rene Valle. The hen was from the bloodlines of Col. Carlos Mendieta, possibly the greatest breeder in Cuba. Although he wanted to be called "Colonel" he had also been President of Cuba and was a physician by profession. As a breeder, he is the Sanford Hatch of Cuban fowl. Not known as a winner, his fowl were admired for their gameness and those lucky enough to recieve fowl from him were able to improve their lines substantially. The young Gustavo became very friendly with the Colonel and was one of the very few to receive fowl freely from Mendieta, who was not normally very generous with his fowl. One of the great Cuban old time breeders now living in Puerto Rico, Mario Leon, remembers that when someone asked Mendieta for a chicken, he would always say "of course, when you leave." When the guest left, Mendieta's feeder would bring him a paper bag with a newly born chick in it. Usually, the guest would become confused and would say something like, " but I wanted one that I could fight." Mendieta would tell him, "you can fight this one, but raise him first so that you learn how difficult it is." Not many asked twice. When Mendieta died in 1960 at 91 years of age, Don Gustavo was given about 80% of the existing fowl. He blended these into his lines and this is what he brought to Miami. Among these was a cock called "the Chocolate Cock" which in breeding was 3/4 Mendieta and 1/4 Chin Chin Sierra. The best fowl ever to come out of Miami are direct descendants of this cock. Rene Valle bred two Dom hens to the Chocolate Cock. From this breeding he developed the line now known and "Cuatro Telas". This name means "four webber" which is how the cock was toe marked. Pedro Suarez bred to the Chocolate cock and produced "the 30 cock" which was known throughout Latin America for the quality of his sons.
In all, every major line that came from Miami in the late sixties and seventies had something to do with Gustavo's fowl. Since then, Don Gustavo's old feeder in Cuba, Miguel Guerra, would send via Mexico to Don Gustavo special cocks he saw fight in Cuba. In this way, Gustavo has developed a Grey and a Henny line from these cocks as well as maintaining his own strain. Don Gustavo maintains thirty different single-mated breeding pens. He tries to keep blood relationships to a minimum to reduce inbreeding over the years. Almost all his fowl carry the blood of the great cocks Mendieta gave him as well as that of his own best fowl. Buried on his 10 acre farm in Miami are such great cocks as Candela, Trifino, Emperador, and of course, Chocolate. There's a saying in Spanish that says: "If you want to be vilified, sell fighting cocks." Not even Gustavo has been able to escape this bane. In the late seventies and early eighties, there was a great demand for large, tall cocks. The old-time Cuban fowl rarely come over 3-8 in weight. To get more size and station into his fowl, Don Gustavo bred some Spanish cocks into his strain. Initially, they were a great success as fighting cocks. But over time, they turned out to be short bred. He was forced to eliminate these strains totally and returned to the old tried and true lines. Now, nearing 80 years young, Don Gustavo has been afflicted with a very serious case of Arthritis. He continues to breed his cocks, as well as German Shepherds, but he must now count on others, including his son and friends, to help him with the daily grind involved in raising fowl. It is an honor and pleasure for me to be able to write these lines in his honor while he is still actively involved in the great endeavor of breeding high class fighting fowl.
©2007 Spanish Peak GameFarm
Postiza fowl is my favorite fowl..my good friend from Ct..have some real good fowl, he is exporting to Ecuador and Peru with great success he also fights in Puerto Rico with good success, I know he is(was) doing good with spanish fowl and clarets for short gaff(when was legal)..
Last edited by realgame; January 6th, 2012 at 11:28 AM.
I used to have some spanish and cuban doms their little fowl super aggresive headhunters stamina goes on for days but no power super accurate postiza birds tough also
Guardia Civil.Your birds look the picture of health.Nice one.
Last edited by gaff; January 6th, 2012 at 01:45 PM. Reason: Add
Guardia Civil.Your birds look the picture of health.Nice one
Gaff...those are not my fowls;they are from the yard of Mr. Sanchez.I just had the priveleged to take a picture of them.
Gallos Cubanos...if you hold a 6 pounder vs a 4.4 you may wonder why it is easier to condition a lighter fowl.
Yeah I know the feeling. My friend and mentor has such perfect looking birds. I strive for the same but rarely come close. But it's good to have a high standard to aspire to.
Well that's interesting. I do see a few differences in opinion. I know English game are till this day shown in 1 1/2 inch steel. During a visit to the museum in London last year some gaffs or spurs were on display and they were 1 1/2 inch. Some have had straight bred English game around here shown in short heels they have a reputation for being accurate head strikers. The English game you describe may have and still may exist but I've never heard of long heel showing in England or Ireland.
Cubans I've seen here and on the Internet do come Dom ( creole) in colour, and as Cuban fowl we agree are decendant from Spanish fowl, I believe Spanish can also come Dom in color.
To say that the English and Spanish never cross bred their birds in 1808 is not possible,unless you were there. The only person that knows how any bird is bred is the man that bred them.
As for colors Kelso fowl originate from a cross of two straight comb, white legged families the white hackle and the claret( I hope I got that one right) anyways they were straight comb red birds with white legs. Today you find Kelsos white,yellow and blue leg. They are dark red,light red, spangle and white,pea comb and straight comb. Each type come in "pure" to type and style families. And each are still called Kelsos.
So I would say that Spanish and Cuban birds through the years may also have been bred by various people who crossed them and selected for their own liking and therefore can come any color.
Some of what we have posted is fact and some opinion and it's ok to disagree.
Jmho. From my own observations.
Last edited by gaff; January 8th, 2012 at 06:49 AM. Reason: Spelling
If Don Gustavo really bred some Spanish blood in his yard- i think is a matter of speculation from the writer.As far as i know the only blood that was added in their flock were the Rampuris and the Atkinsons.
interesting reading. Back when legal we got some jerzano spanish from la bred for 1 1/4 aluminum spur. crossed them onto our knife bred americans and did pretty well with them at half or quarter blood. We added a little asil in the mix and set them as a family. today they are set at 1/4 hamlin asil, 1/4 mccoy asil and 1/2 jerzano spanish. used em to grade onto americanfowl just like pure asil. very good when bred to fast fowl for the sk. nowadays they just stand around and look pretty but they are cool lil chickens. I really enjoyed visiting la. back when they were still legal. nice folks.
I have a hen giving to me a couple months ago and is creole or Dom in color straight comb
I've always worried about what my fowl are doing 'this year ' , dont really care about 20 years ago let alone 200 . History is all good and well , so long as we learn from it .And from what I gather cockers today are just the same as our forefathers in that we will try 'new blood ' from any source we think will give us an advantage over those whom we compete against . The rules of the pit and the method of fighting dictate the 'type' of fowl best suited in any given locale and the Spanish( and her territories) were well aware of this 200 years ago just as today . I wonder how much Parawakan blood made its way back to Spain after the Spanish colonized the Philippines ? Which is not to mention the rest of Asia were ever a galleon touched land . Wheeling is not a virtue I hold dear , but many fowl of latin origin fight in this method , to me a wheeler is one step away from a runner. Its surprising that after so many centuries of Spanish occupation of the Philippines and the dispersal of her gamefowl from the 'home land' it took the 'texas' fowl from the states to keep the cocks in the pit and die game on a regular basis. Were did the states get their fowl from ? Back to the good old England and Ireland who tested and bred their fowl on steel.
Guardia please keep posting those beautiful pic's of modern naked heel fowl
nonny...some friends did try some asil/cuban/american crosses in PI and its been more than satisfactory.Edong who belongs to this site is presently breeding them.One friend up north did a brother/sister mating, hope he will do good.
Thanks for the history lesson terrier man. Very interesting. Most American games are decendant from England, Ireland and Spain it seems. Where did they get them.???