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How old should a chicken be to butcher it??

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 

DI forgot how old you can start butchering chickens to eat?? Thanks for your help.

Carol

(2 Royal Palm Turks 8 mo old 06/9/09..Laying& Fertile) ..(5 RIR-7 mo old 6/24/09.. LAYING & Fertile )  .. (1 Royal Palm Turkey-6 mo old 6/30/09)..  (Cute Cute Cute  3 Silkies- 4 mo old 06/12/09) ..(12 BA-4 mo old 06/22/09)  2 Ringneck Pheasants 1 month old 8/28/09
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(2 Royal Palm Turks 8 mo old 06/9/09..Laying& Fertile) ..(5 RIR-7 mo old 6/24/09.. LAYING & Fertile )  .. (1 Royal Palm Turkey-6 mo old 6/30/09)..  (Cute Cute Cute  3 Silkies- 4 mo old 06/12/09) ..(12 BA-4 mo old 06/22/09)  2 Ringneck Pheasants 1 month old 8/28/09
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post #2 of 13

what kind of birds are you going to butcher?  I do my meat birds at 8 weeks, but if you are doing a dual purpose, you could probably let it go to about 12-16 weeks.  The olde they are the tougher they get, but there are ways around tough birds--as in brining, slowcooking,etc.

chickens, ducks,, seasonal cornish X, horses,  sheep, a milk cow, asnd a milk goat, dogs,  cats, and eggs in the 'bator.. And the greatest family in the world!
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chickens, ducks,, seasonal cornish X, horses,  sheep, a milk cow, asnd a milk goat, dogs,  cats, and eggs in the 'bator.. And the greatest family in the world!
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post #3 of 13
Thread Starter 

I have RIR and I plan on putting most of my roosters in freezer and few hens..want to keep one rooster or two and some hens for eggs and breeding...

(2 Royal Palm Turks 8 mo old 06/9/09..Laying& Fertile) ..(5 RIR-7 mo old 6/24/09.. LAYING & Fertile )  .. (1 Royal Palm Turkey-6 mo old 6/30/09)..  (Cute Cute Cute  3 Silkies- 4 mo old 06/12/09) ..(12 BA-4 mo old 06/22/09)  2 Ringneck Pheasants 1 month old 8/28/09
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(2 Royal Palm Turks 8 mo old 06/9/09..Laying& Fertile) ..(5 RIR-7 mo old 6/24/09.. LAYING & Fertile )  .. (1 Royal Palm Turkey-6 mo old 6/30/09)..  (Cute Cute Cute  3 Silkies- 4 mo old 06/12/09) ..(12 BA-4 mo old 06/22/09)  2 Ringneck Pheasants 1 month old 8/28/09
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post #4 of 13

Anytime before 24 weeks you will be ok! After that the your chewing on a tire.

www.bruntyfarms.com
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Brunty-Farms/123540254350138

"Success is waking up in the morning, whoever you are, wherever you are, however old or young, and bounding out of bed because there's something out there you love to do, that you believe in, that you're good at something that's bigger than you are, and you can hardly wait to get at it again today."
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www.bruntyfarms.com
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Brunty-Farms/123540254350138

"Success is waking up in the morning, whoever you are, wherever you are, however old or young, and bounding out of bed because there's something out there you love to do, that you believe in, that you're good at something that's bigger than you are, and you can hardly wait to get at it again today."
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post #5 of 13

i would think it depends on the size of bird you want,when mine feel like there is a good bit of meat on them I butcher them,(extra roosters)some wont get real big no matter how old they are so I cook two of those for dinner

post #6 of 13
Thread Starter 

Thanks you all for the in...I will keep in mind 24 weeks or less.

(2 Royal Palm Turks 8 mo old 06/9/09..Laying& Fertile) ..(5 RIR-7 mo old 6/24/09.. LAYING & Fertile )  .. (1 Royal Palm Turkey-6 mo old 6/30/09)..  (Cute Cute Cute  3 Silkies- 4 mo old 06/12/09) ..(12 BA-4 mo old 06/22/09)  2 Ringneck Pheasants 1 month old 8/28/09
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(2 Royal Palm Turks 8 mo old 06/9/09..Laying& Fertile) ..(5 RIR-7 mo old 6/24/09.. LAYING & Fertile )  .. (1 Royal Palm Turkey-6 mo old 6/30/09)..  (Cute Cute Cute  3 Silkies- 4 mo old 06/12/09) ..(12 BA-4 mo old 06/22/09)  2 Ringneck Pheasants 1 month old 8/28/09
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post #7 of 13

For RIRs you probably want to do it around 15-16 weeks - your feed conversion will go down after that and you won't add substantial meat.  AND, for the roos once they start crowing and the testosterone gets flowing, the meat isn't as good.  After 16 weeks it is only going to get tougher and less yummy IMO.

Don't get me wrong, our last "dinner" roo was 26 weeks when we did him in and he was good to eat - but I brined him for 3 days and slow cooked him for about 8  hours before trying to eat him.

Kelly

Mama to 6 little Monkeys and a few dozen chickens - Ameraucanas, EEs, Buff Orpingtons, Cuckoo Marans, Welsummers, OEGs, and a couple of mutts
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Mama to 6 little Monkeys and a few dozen chickens - Ameraucanas, EEs, Buff Orpingtons, Cuckoo Marans, Welsummers, OEGs, and a couple of mutts
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post #8 of 13

I do my dual purpose at about 16 weeks.  That is very true about the roosters crowing.  You want to dress them out about the time they start crowing really good.  The longer you wait the tougher they taste.  I also do mine at older ages, but I pressure them or crock pot them.

Just about "setting" time again!
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Just about "setting" time again!
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post #9 of 13
Thread Starter 

Oh thanks for letting me know the weeks and about the Rooster I did not know so now I will plan on when they are going into my freeper outside what keep for breeding and eggs.  Thanks and Merry Christmas!!! smilesmile


Carol

(2 Royal Palm Turks 8 mo old 06/9/09..Laying& Fertile) ..(5 RIR-7 mo old 6/24/09.. LAYING & Fertile )  .. (1 Royal Palm Turkey-6 mo old 6/30/09)..  (Cute Cute Cute  3 Silkies- 4 mo old 06/12/09) ..(12 BA-4 mo old 06/22/09)  2 Ringneck Pheasants 1 month old 8/28/09
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(2 Royal Palm Turks 8 mo old 06/9/09..Laying& Fertile) ..(5 RIR-7 mo old 6/24/09.. LAYING & Fertile )  .. (1 Royal Palm Turkey-6 mo old 6/30/09)..  (Cute Cute Cute  3 Silkies- 4 mo old 06/12/09) ..(12 BA-4 mo old 06/22/09)  2 Ringneck Pheasants 1 month old 8/28/09
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post #10 of 13

Anyone have a good weight in mind for there birds when you buthcer tham or do you just butcher at an specific age?

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