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The 10 Best Breeds of Fighting Roosters and Gamefowl Bloodlines

The gamefowls or fighting roosters are a group of different breeds dedicated to fighting among themselves, which are characterized by having an extremely aggressive behavior in both females and males. This temperament manifests itself from an early age, so it is necessary to separate the males from each other to avoid a fight.

Today we will address the different breeds of fighting roosters, also called fighting cocks in the Philippines, gamefowls, or gamecocks. These are some of the best gamefowl bloodlines in the country today.

In countries where cockfighting is legal (need to secure a permit from the government) like the Philippines, the type of fighting cocks bloodline is very important.

Breeds of Gamefowls

As in any animal, be it dogs, cats, birds, horses, etc., there are always different types of breed and in fighting cocks it is the same. These breeds have a number of varieties, families, or lines. But this time we will focus solely on describing the characteristics of the best fighting cock breeds.

Best Breeds of Fighting Roosters

The common question asked by many sabungeros (people engaged in cockfighting) is what are the best breeds of fighting roosters? This is a question, although it seems very simple, it is very complicated to answer. Since it will depend on many external factors such as food, environment, vitamins for fighting roosters, training, or preparation, which does not only imply their genetics or lineage. From the point of view of experts, there is no perfect breed of gamefowls. But if there is a large number of roosters from a very good family, which with dedication and work can become an excellent fighting cock.

It should be mentioned that within each line or family of roosters there may be a large number of varieties or subfamilies. Since the breeder can make the cross with another breed to improve some characteristics of the bird.

So if you plan to buy a specific breed of fighting cock, we recommend that you first know all the qualities and characteristics of the most suitable fighting cock breeds. Choose the breed that best suits your needs, but remember: you must provide the care and nutrition necessary to develop its potential to its fullest.

1. Sweater

Developed by Carol Nesmith, Sweater has consistently won the majority of derby fights in hard competition over the years in the bloodiest cockpits in the Philippines and Mexico. Sweater became the winningest bloodline of fighting cock not only in the Philippines but also in South America, particularly in Mexico.

Although Carol is not the original breeder of the famous bloodline, he is instrumental in its popularity and the one who refined its bloodline so he deserves all credits for the Sweater development. The person who sold him the original stock even told him that the bred could no longer compete. Carol’s partnership with one of the Philippines’ best, Rafel Abello, paid off and the bloodline became not only famous but the leader in cockfighting.

2. Kelso

Kelso rooster image ©

The Kelso rooster breed is one of the most classic for combat, they are very popular and can be commonly seen in cockfighting venues. They are birds that are very good at attacking both above and below their opponents. They are very intelligent roosters, which have earned their popularity as one of the best fighting breeds.

Aesthetically they are very beautiful animals, of great size. For many cockfighting enthusiasts, it is the most beloved and sought-after breed of fighting cocks, since until today very good results are obtained.

3. Roundhead

Every cockfighter in the Philippines from city to rural sitio knows what roundhead gamefowl is. Roundhead is one of the most popular breeds of fighting cocks in the country and the only thing one should know about where his gamefowl came from. The bloodline is very important since there are many roundhead breeders in the country. Experienced cockfighters know the difference between pure and fake roundheads.

The purebred and original roundhead has a pea comb but not all roosters having pea comb are roundheads. There are many breeders in the Philippines who offer roundheads but it is always advisable to buy only from well-known and respectable game farms.

4. Hatch

Hatch image ©

Hatch fighting cocks are of the best known and recommended American lines in fighting cocks. One of the characteristics that distinguish this rooster is its strength and the speed of its attack. So they are excellent in combat and do not tire easily. Has greater strength in floor combat.

This breed matches very well with almost any other breed, especially Sweater, Kelso, and Radio. Their legs have a yellow-green color that characterizes them.

5. Hatch Twist

Hatch twist image ©

It is a variant of the Hatch line of roosters. The twirling hatch is differentiated by having white or yellow feathers on its neck. It is a specimen that fights very fast and with great force, in addition to being large. During combat always look down (between 60 to 70 cm).

For some breeders of American roosters, hatch twists are the “secret breed” for creating new varieties of fighting roosters with important characteristics for fighting since they are generally very skilled gamefowls.

6. Asil

Asil image ©

It is a breed of fine roosters native to India, the color of its plumage is black and red, with yellowish legs. In its anatomy, it has broad shoulders and a small beak, however, its wings are very prominent and stand out in this specimen.

The size of the Asil rooster is small to medium and can weigh between 1.8 and 2.7 kilos. For fighting, he is considered a good fighter since his attack is hard and he can hurt his opponent with only his bare heels.

One of the disadvantages that can be mentioned of this rooster is that to throw at his opponent they need to “bite”, his attack is slow. However, this is one of the fighting cock families that inch cock breeders have mixed with other breeds to give their birds more stamina and cut. There is a well-known phrase in the cockfighting world regarding this breed: “The Asil is the only breed that improves all the fighting rooster breeds.”

7. Shamo

Shamo roosters image ©

The rooster breed “Shamo fighter” is a very strong and dominating specimen, possibly the most “powerful” rooster that is always on top of his opponent. Of a size that goes from medium to large, having a weight that varies from 3.5 to 6 kilos, depending on the line. The color of their plumage can be white, red, and yellow (turn), or gold.

There are several lines or breeds of shame roosters, but generally, they all have thick feathers, of Asian origin. This breed was developed to be a fighting rooster of unmatched ferocity and courage.

Shamo roosters are one of the world-renowned fighting birds. The cockerels are aware of the great strength and resistance of these birds, which is why they are considered one of the “best fighting cocks”.

8. Radio

Radio image ©

The Rooster Radio is characterized by being an excellent fighting rooster, widely used by the rooster of Mexico and the United States. One of the characteristics that make this breed stand out is that they are roosters with a serrated crest and a square head.

They are very cheerful but aggressive roosters, with broad and strong loins. Its colors are reddish combined with black feathers, with medium yellow legs. During the fight, they can be described as determined roosters, but intelligent in combat, always looking for their opponent, with quick attacks, going well on the ground and during flight.

9. Peruvian

Peruvian gamefowl is becoming popular in the Philippines and is one of the most sought-after in today’s cockfighting but also the most expensive bird. As its name suggests, Peruvian gamefowl was developed in Peru and one of the oldest bloodlines but it took them decades of development to get the perfect bloodline – the one we have today.

A Peruvian trio of breeders could cost up to a quarter a million peso and is very difficult to acquire. We have a separate article about Peruvian here.

10. Spanish Gamefowl

Spanish Gamefowl image © Taino Boriqua

Also called the fighter of Spain, and Spanish Gamefowl is one of the best fighting birds in Europe and has become popular since the formation of the breed. They are small to medium in size, they cannot be together with another rooster because they fight to protect their territory and be the dominant one. It has an elegant bearing, with great physical characteristics that make it an aesthetically beautiful rooster.

There is a wide variety of colors for Spanish roosters, from white to light and mottled. In combat it is an animal that always seeks a fight and never runs away from its battles, it enters with its legs looking for the upper part of the opponent, always with courage and bravery.

These are some of the best fighting cock breeds, but there are many more.

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