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THE ASIL - A VIEW ON PHYSICAL FEATURES

INTRODUCTION

The Asil is a complex breed. Beside the "main" Asil (Aseel), also many varieties excist. Some show special physical features. To give Asil breeders around the world an indication a list of features is listed below together with additional pictures for explanation.Any remarks or additions. Please mail us. If your contribution is useful we will use the information for publication on this website.

PLEASE READ THIS FIRST

In the past Asil showed a more consistant physical appearance then today. For most of the Asil keepers in the old days there was no way to exchange or purchase other Asil. This was often prevented by geographical limitations such as mountainous and remote (desert) areas. In those times people only could travel by foot, horse, donkey , boat bullock cart or (camel) caravan ! The introduction of modern transportation to
India (including Pakistan & Bangladesh) was in 1852 when the first train track got operational. The first cars were introduced in 1900. In 1912 the first air cargo service was introduced. The introduction and use of modern means of transportation made it much easier to exchange or purchase Asil stock from all over India (including Pakistan & Bangladesh). This new development has been of major influence in Asil
breeding. This over decades has resulted in socalled "intermediar" types of Asil . In other words there are Asil which showing physical features of more then one Asil variety. Therfor sometimes it is not possible to define the exact type of an Asil. We more or less can speak of a "classic" and "mix" type. Please understand this reality within the world of the Asil breed. Thanks !

Body points

THE ASIL HEAD

The ideal Asil head is more or less round-shaped and broad, the eyes pearlwhite and proteted by protuberant eyebrows and cheekbones, a small low set pea or walnut comb (except the single-combed bhaingam variety) , a relative massive beak. The transition between the head and the neck shows the typical "dent". The colour of the face is generally red. Asil with a dark-colored face are seen on South Indian Asil. The tissue of the face should be lean. A head with a very fleshy tissue structure is a disadvantage in battle. The tissue of the head will get rapidly bruished and the eyes being closed. Wattles should be absent only rudimentary presence is allowed.

ideal Asil heads (from past & present)

ABOUT COMB TYPES

The Asil breed (including breed varities) show a variation in comb types and beak shapes. In generally we can say that North Indian Asil types wereunder the Reza Asil have (triple) peacombs only. The South Indian varieties whereunder the Malay and the Madras Asil show (triple) peacombs as well as walnut combs. According some Asil sources from India the Asil can be generally divided into 3 main types 1) Reza Asil 2) North Indian and 3) South Indian. If we speak about "North Indian-type", birds from Pakistan and Bangladesh are included.

Reza Asil - showing small triple peacomb

Kulang Asil (South Indian & Malay-type) - showing walnut comb

(left) single-combed Asil socalled "bhaingam" variety

(right) single-combed Asil with clipped comb (Pakistani style)

ABOUT BEAK TYPES

North Indian type Asil have (triple) peacombs and a fairly large beak with the shape similar to an eagle. The birds from Southern India generally show a short but massive triangle shaped beak.

(left) large eagle-like beak of North Indian Kulang Asil

(right) short massive beak of South Indian Kulang Asil

ABOUT EYES & EYE COLOURS

All North Indian type (Reza Asil included) and South Indian type Asil must show a pearl-white colored eye. Red or orange-colored eyes are a fault. Pale yellow-colored eyes can be seen in young birds which later will turn into a pearl-white colour. Sometimes pearl-white colored eyes are seen showing tiny blood veins running in the eyes. There are Asil breeders in the homelands of the Asil breed who prefer these socalled "bloodshot" eyes. These are regarded as a sign of vitality. The eyes are set deep in the skull and protected by protuberant eyebrows and cheekbones.

pearl eye

"bloodshot" pearl eye

ABOUT LEGS & LEG COLOURS

The main leg colours within the Asil breed are ivory white, yellow, black,grey and blue. Green or yellow legs with black spots as found in the Japanese Shamo breed are untypical for the Asil breed. The dark-colored leg colours are generally seen on the South Indian Asil. Some Asil show very rough scales pointing a little bit outwards. This is not the same thing as the poultry disease known as "scaly legs". Some Asil breeders in the homelands of the breed prefer these rough scales as they can cause extra damage in a fight as they act as a rasp ! The shape of an Asil leg should not be round but angular.

(left) ivory leg colour

(right) yellow leg colour - see also the typical angular shape of the legs.

dark-colored leg on a South Indian Kulang-type Asil.

ABOUT SHOULDERS, BACK AND BODY

Very untypical for Asil are wings carried apart from the body and upwards pointing shoulders as seen at a Japanese Shamo. The Asil should have broad shoulders and wings are carried against the body. The line of the back is also different. The Shamo has a very inclined backline, the Asil has not. The Shamo is a breed with a very erect stand, the angle of the back line of the Asil is about 45 degrees. This is also the reason why a Shamo and a Kulang Asil with both the same weight differ in height. The body of an Asil is very muscular but also compact. The body of the Shamo is muscular too but has a longer shape.

(left) Japanese Shamo - protuberant wings, upwards pointing shoulders, steep backline

(right) Kulang Asil - wings close to the body, broad shoulders, 45 degree backline

The Asil breed - physical variety

In some countries Reza Asil were bred to other physical criteria to meet the requirments for a specific fighting style like postiza, slasher, gaff or other type of artificial spurs. This resulted in Reza Asil which show a very lean and elegant type or a short, compact bird. Some examples of these "breeding directions" are shown below.

ASIL IN SOUTH - CENTRAL & NORTH AMERICA

There was a time that Argentino Asil breeders bred the best Asil of the American continent. These socalled "Asil Argentino" were exported to a number of American countries (South, North, Central and Carribean). These birds were fought in metal spurs known as "puones", these are short conical shaped spurs. Birds fighting with these type of spurs must exel in endurance, stamina and power. This was reflected in the type of Asil. From the physical point of view these birds are build extremely compact. Real example of feathered powerhouses. Other American bred Asil show a very lean and elegant type. These birds are build for fights with metal artificial spurs such as knives and gaffs. Breeding is focussed on fighting qualities like agility and speed.

(left & right) typical heads of South American (Reza Asil)

(left) a classic example from an "Asil Argentino" bred in the 1960's

(right) an extreme proportioned head of a Mexican bred Reza Asil

(left) an Asil bred by Bobby Boles (USA). This was a superb steel spur fighting strain.

(right) a lean and elegant Asil bred in the United States.

The above displayed pictures of Asil bred on the American Continent show variations in type and shape. The purpose of these variations is to breed a bird which physically is optimized to perform in a specific type of artificial spurs (metal or plastic) such as gaffs, postiza knives and slashers. Asil used with artificial spurs must be fast, agile and very accurate

If you have any comments, additions to make, etcetera please email us (see start page). All valuable information is very welcome. It can be of benefit to all Asil breeders worldwide. The learn curve never stops.

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