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Butchering my Turkeys

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 

I have 4 BB turkeys 2 Toms and 2 hens.  I got them in early June and have been trying to butcher since the middle of September due to weather, no electricity ect have not been able to get the job done.  I have raised chickens and know that if you wait to late to butcher the bird gets tough is this the same for turkeys.  My intent was to roast them for the holidays and I am worried if I wait to much longer they are going to start getting tough.  I have one hen that has already started laying eggs and my two toms are starting to fight to see who's boss.  How quickly do I need to butcher them.

post #2 of 4
Quote:
Originally Posted by AKturkey View Post
 

I have 4 BB turkeys 2 Toms and 2 hens.  I got them in early June and have been trying to butcher since the middle of September due to weather, no electricity ect have not been able to get the job done.  I have raised chickens and know that if you wait to late to butcher the bird gets tough is this the same for turkeys.  My intent was to roast them for the holidays and I am worried if I wait to much longer they are going to start getting tough.  I have one hen that has already started laying eggs and my two toms are starting to fight to see who's boss.  How quickly do I need to butcher them.


You should check out some of the threads in the Meat Birds Etc. forum.

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/f/21/meat-birds-etc

 

I prefer fresh poultry.  If I am butchering a turkey for myself or someone else, I butcher it three full days before the planned meal date.  I soak mine in salted water overnight and then let it rest in a refrigerator for three days.  The next day after that is when the bird gets cooked.  If I was preparing one for Thanksgiving, I would butcher it on the Sunday before.

 

This is what I do and I am well aware that others do differently.  It works for me or the people who have gotten dressed turkeys from me.

 

Good luck.

Welsummers, mixed breed chickens, Blue Slate turkeys, Sweetgrass turkeys and guineas.

In wonderful Wyoming.

Bob

 

My photo album

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Welsummers, mixed breed chickens, Blue Slate turkeys, Sweetgrass turkeys and guineas.

In wonderful Wyoming.

Bob

 

My photo album

Reply
post #3 of 4
Thread Starter 

Thanks 

 

 

T the temp in Fairbanks drops to about -10 to -20 in November and December so that was why I was thinking about doing it now.  I would actually prefer to wait until right before the holidays.  The birds should not get to tuff if I wait until then should it?  I would hate to serve a tuff turkey for a nice Thanksgiving meal.  My large tom is huge I am thinking he will dress out at about 25-28 pounds.

post #4 of 4

I butchered some Cornish X chickens a month late (at nearly 10 pounds dressed out... not including giblets or necks) and they were plenty tender.

 

A few days "aging" in the fridge helps and I believe also keeping them inactive should keep them tender.  The Cornish X's didn't move around much, hence never really got a chance to toughen up even though they were older than "suggested". 

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