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What is the best age to butcher non-meatie roosters?

post #1 of 34
Thread Starter 

I have 2 ameraucana, 2 blrw and possibly a couple of other roosters that I have a feeling I'm going to have a hard time selling... so the only thing I can really do is butcher them.  What is the best age to do this?  Should I get the separated from the rest of the flock and start feeding them something other than chick start/grower?

~*~Georgia~*~
Wife of a wonderful husband.  Mother to 2 crazy boys, too many chickens to count and who knows how many other animals.
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~*~Georgia~*~
Wife of a wonderful husband.  Mother to 2 crazy boys, too many chickens to count and who knows how many other animals.
Reply
post #2 of 34

I hope someone throws a good answear in here cause i have an excess of roosters about 10 weeks old

post #3 of 34

I too need an answer to this. Thanks for posting.

Mom to 1 wonderful chicken herding dog,4 cats, 14 hens.   
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Mom to 1 wonderful chicken herding dog,4 cats, 14 hens.   
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post #4 of 34

I can't give you a time frame,but if you grab the roo and feel the drumstick is it meaty, then spread the feathers on the breast, if the skin is a rose pink or yellow there ready, if the skin is red or purplish the means there's no fat yet and there not ready. time frame really depends on how there fed and what breed. this is how I tell

also pinch the shin on the breast if its thin not ready, thicker ready what your looking for is a thin layer of fat.

I feed grower and free range, I separate the butcher birds from the keepers


Edited by Buck Creek Chickens - 6/8/09 at 11:28am

STANDARD: Black, Blue Ameraucana, Splash, Partridge Silkies, Ga Noi, Lavender Orpington, SQ Black Minorca, Black Langshan, RC & SC RIR
BANTAM: SQ Black Mottled d'Uccles, SQ Gold Neck & Mottled Buff Booted, Black, Blue Cochin, Serama,
Winnebago Co Poultry Superintendent, WI Pullorum Tester

Please don't email me with an I want, I will not respond, at this time my Booteds & d'Uccles are not for sale

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STANDARD: Black, Blue Ameraucana, Splash, Partridge Silkies, Ga Noi, Lavender Orpington, SQ Black Minorca, Black Langshan, RC & SC RIR
BANTAM: SQ Black Mottled d'Uccles, SQ Gold Neck & Mottled Buff Booted, Black, Blue Cochin, Serama,
Winnebago Co Poultry Superintendent, WI Pullorum Tester

Please don't email me with an I want, I will not respond, at this time my Booteds & d'Uccles are not for sale

Reply
post #5 of 34

I have heard that dual purpose breeds can be butchered between 16-20 weeks old (12 if you are lucky and have a plump roo....or it crows excessively).  I don't hae any experience with this....yet. (Our excess roos are only 11 weeks old).

I'm Shelby!! My wonderful hubby and I have 15 hens (1 Delaware, 1 white Leghorn, 2 mottled Javas, 2 Buckeyes, 2 barred Rocks, 2 Rhode Island Reds, 4 Easter Eggers, 4 Jersey Giants and 4 Welsummers), 1 roo (barred rock), 4 dogs, 2 cats and 3 rabbits...and all spoiled!!
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I'm Shelby!! My wonderful hubby and I have 15 hens (1 Delaware, 1 white Leghorn, 2 mottled Javas, 2 Buckeyes, 2 barred Rocks, 2 Rhode Island Reds, 4 Easter Eggers, 4 Jersey Giants and 4 Welsummers), 1 roo (barred rock), 4 dogs, 2 cats and 3 rabbits...and all spoiled!!
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post #6 of 34

I like to let mine get nice & meaty, usually 16-22 weeks.  But I know other folks do them earlier, 12-14 weeks.  I keep mine confined & just feed them chick starter & then layer feed if they get to 18 weeks.  I haven't  had any problems with them being too tough.  After butchering I let them rest in the refrigerator 2-3 days.  Often I'll just slowly simmer them on the stovetop until the meat falls off the bones, then I pack & freeze the cooked meat to use in soups, stews & chilis.  It goes farther that way.  They can also be slowly roasted in the oven at a low heat to tender goodness.

Enjoy your meals from your roos, they're worth the effort!

It's not happy people who are thankful, it is thankful people who are happy!
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It's not happy people who are thankful, it is thankful people who are happy!
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post #7 of 34
Thread Starter 

Thanks for all the info!

~*~Georgia~*~
Wife of a wonderful husband.  Mother to 2 crazy boys, too many chickens to count and who knows how many other animals.
Reply
~*~Georgia~*~
Wife of a wonderful husband.  Mother to 2 crazy boys, too many chickens to count and who knows how many other animals.
Reply
post #8 of 34

I have threerock roos, one we are keeping.  I just weighed them, and they were 3 1/2 lbs at four months!  What is up with that?  they are mostly free range, bu tI offer them game bird feed every day, and they rarely eat it.  Should I pen them up and feed them for the last month or so?

Starting over with a flock of mixed layers and my lovely fluffy butts- black cochins.
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Starting over with a flock of mixed layers and my lovely fluffy butts- black cochins.
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post #9 of 34

I've been wondering this as well..

Come see my Egg-Spudition into Backyard Chickens & see my Chick's album.  http://boisebackyardchickens.blogspot.com - come to my blog and watch the PBS Documentary : The Natural History of Chickens
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Come see my Egg-Spudition into Backyard Chickens & see my Chick's album.  http://boisebackyardchickens.blogspot.com - come to my blog and watch the PBS Documentary : The Natural History of Chickens
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post #10 of 34

I butcher my cockerels/roos they are a mix of Orpington over Orpington, Delaware, EE, BR and Cochin; I even process my bantam cockerels/roos.  I let them stay with the main flock until they start showing interest in the hens, then move them to a run/pen by themselves.  I feed all my flock Flock Raiser and that is what the guys get.  I usually process when they are 5 to 6 months (20 to 24 weeks) or when they become a pain in my backside for whatever reason.  The last two processed, after cleaning their weight was 3 pounds 15.8 ounces for one and 4 pounds 10.8 ounces on the second.




This is a fantastic article for the homegrown bird age for processing and cooking:    www.albc-usa.org/documents/cookingwheritagechicken.pdf





Ooops
just saw the age of this thread hmm


Edited by HorseFeatherz NV - 5/19/10 at 11:06am
Fowl adventures happening daily       

"Poultry- they may be your pets, they may be your hobby, they may be your livestock. But remember, if you fall down in the pen, unconscious? They WILL eat you." ~ Sally/Ranchie - we miss you.
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Fowl adventures happening daily       

"Poultry- they may be your pets, they may be your hobby, they may be your livestock. But remember, if you fall down in the pen, unconscious? They WILL eat you." ~ Sally/Ranchie - we miss you.
Reply
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