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Summarised Report of the BS General Council held on Thursday 14th September 2023

October 8, 2023

The Budgerigar Society

Summarised Report of the BS General Council held on Thursday 14th September 2023, at 7.15pm via Zoom.

Chairman’s Welcome – The Chairman wished everyone a warm welcome and thanked them for their attendance, he apologised for missing the last meeting due to illness and thanked the Vice Chairman for Chairing at such short notice.

Since our last meeting, General Councilor Simon Devaney had resigned. A letter was sent to Simon thanking him for his support during his time on Council. He then welcomed Jim Muir and hoped he would have an enjoyable time in the remaining months of this Council term.

Apologies for Absence – Apologies received from Janice Al-Nasser and Richard Miller due to previous engagements.

Club Show 2023 – The Club Show (CS) Director advised that despite the new show format allowing members to bench birds up to 11.30am on the Saturday morning the figures are disappointing with the competitive entry at 1,108 including 130 Colour Budgerigars. This is down 66 on 2022. Sales are down from135 to 115 giving a total entry is 1,223 – down 201 on last year. There are 94 exhibitors which is only down by 2 on last year.

He explained on the day of the show we require helpers for various tasks throughout the weekend. Most urgent of all is the door on Sunday – five volunteers including partners came forward. Wrist bands are delayed and in future the Show Secretary will print these. The Society will not book refreshments for the judges etc. via the Dome but these will be supplied by Sue Smith and her team. The team of Chief Stewards and Stewards are ready and will be limited to three plus one Chief Steward per Judge.

There are some gaps in personnel – the Sales Team is one down due to illness; the Show Treasurer is away, and this role will be filled by the CS Director and his wife.

The Dinner Dance has increased to 108 attendees and there is a super raffle.

While the entry is disappointing, we are looking forward to an enjoyable show with plenty of visitors and the Show Committee look forward to the GCs support.

Club Show Venue 2024 and beyond – The CS Director advised members of the sub group visited the Doncaster Racecourse and were happy with the venue and prices quoted on the day. However, the Racecourse, had come back with revised prices, explaining they had underquoted, and the following had been omitted – security, catering, further room costs. This took the price back to almost the same as the Dome. Consequently, the Racecourse is a non-starter.

There was a pre-show meeting at the Dome and they gave us a revised quote of £10,500 which is a couple of thousand less than previously quoted and the Dome manager has been approached to see if they can reduce the costs any further and to talk about a potential deal for the next few years. Despite numerous calls and emails a response is still awaited.

However, if costs remain at this level then the sub group will have no alternative but to continue to look at other venues. We have had several suggestions including Barnsley, Blackpool, Coventry, Leeds, Lincoln, Newark and Wolverhampton. It was hoped to have something settled before this year’s show so that an announcement could be made before member’s re-booked accommodation in Doncaster.

Judges Training Scheme – Arrangements for final test 2023 – The Judges Training Co-ordinator advised that three trainee judges have been sent letters explaining what is expected of them on the day. Sam Wildes will supply several of the rarer mutations for the colour identification aspect of the test.

We have 9 enquiries about joining the judges training scheme, which may cause future challenges in placing trainees at shows as ideally there should be only one per show and hopefully many more will consider joining before the deadline of 31 January 2024.

It has been suggested that a list of judges who wish to judge Colour Budgerigars be compiled following some judges expressing they did not wish to judge the variety as they have no knowledge of it. However, this was rejected as all judges should have the ability to judge all varieties. This led to a discussion, and it was agreed that from 2024 questions about Colour Budgerigars will be added to the Judges Training Scheme final test as will identification and judging of this variety. It was further agreed that more education of the variety for members and judges will be made via the “Budgerigar. This was agreed on a majority vote

It was also agreed that the BS Chairman, who is judging the Colour Budgerigars at the 2023 Club Show, take the trainee judges and give them guidance on judging this section.

Patronage – The Patronage Administrator advised that from the 39 returns so far, there has been 16,318 birds benched and there had been no further longtail/longflight reported as shown via the return form.

Despite the cost to the Society, it is very apparent that some Judges do not follow the guidance laid down in the new Judges Handbook, having had numerous returns in which judges are not filling in the correct details / format of recording CC winning bird details which should be in the sequence of firstly Birds Ring Code followed by Ring Number and finally the year. For example, AA1234-38-23. This means going back to Show Secretaries and ask them to fill in the blanks which can mean the Show Secretary has to contact the exhibitor, resulting in a delay in the results being published.

World Budgerigar Organisation (WBO) – The Vice Chairman advised the WBO had its 28th meeting in August in Belgium. There were 18 delegates representing 13 Countries.

The main business was to review the updated Pictorial Ideal where Roy Aplin had carried out the changes requested and produced his interpretation of the Ideal. This generated much discussion and further amendments were made. The WBO Executive Committee will discuss these with Roy before the new Ideal is presented to each member country including the BS to approve or otherwise.

The Colour Standards for the Blackface and Blackwing was agreed. The sub group presented their recommendations and after discussion the standards were approved. These will be sent to all BS Councillors and if approved will be introduced in the 2024 show season.

The WBO Research programme continues to investigate feather issues.

The WBO wish to hold a show in Europe on Week 27 each year because of the challenges of getting birds from Europe to the non- Europe countries for future WBO meetings.

The Vice Chairman reported that one of the best parts of the meeting, is hearing what is happening in other countries. Many reported challenges with Avian Flu and/or Animal Protection issues. Germany is working with other livestock societies to promote the hobby for the protection and welfare of birds and animals. France hopes to bring out an injection for avian flu in poultry which may lessen restrictions and regulations on other birds including budgerigars. Italy is facing increasing government restrictions on the keeping of livestock with every breeder required to register under a new law. Australia has started to live stream its national show. In the USA they have started to allow unspotted birds at shows. This has had a mixed reaction particularly from the champions and judges but has been well accepted by the novices and beginners and older members.

The winner of the Gould Award 2024 was Dewayne Weldon from the USA.

Property – The Vice Chairman said he had contacted our property agent in Northampton about letting the ground floor. This was declined based on the property being very specialist in its nature and extremely limited on who may want to take on such a let. He advised the property needs updated lighting and the had concerns over the limited parking. The agent has since come back and asked for more time to reconsider his initial decision.

Chairman/Administrator referrals – It was noted that Fred Wright had retired from judging – thank you letter to be sent to him.

Dates of next meetings

  1. Thursday, 12 October 2023 – Rule Change discussion
  2. Thursday, 09 November 2023.
  3. Thursday, 14 December 2023.

Meeting closed at 21:14 hrs.

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