BackYard Chickens › BYC Forum › Raising BackYard Chickens › Managing Your Flock › What do you do with old chickens that stop laying?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

What do you do with old chickens that stop laying?

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 

We have decided to get chickens. Working on designing a coop, talking to other chicken farmers and deciding what kind of chickens we want base on egg production, and temperament of the birds and reading the internet and Raising Chickens for Dummies. However, during dinner this evening, my wife asked me what we would do with the chickens after a few years and they stop laying. Now I am asking you, what do we do? We are both animal lovers and want to have maybe 10 or so chickens for eggs for us and our neighbors.

post #2 of 28

welcome-byc from Indiana! Well, There are a few things you can do with your older chickens.... You can keep them as pets allowing them to live out their days, or you can sell them, or you can make a nice dinner with them.  I'll be facing this problem in the next year or 2... I have 20 laying hens. I don't know what I'm gonna do! We've named these birds and everything! IDK.. maybe the good Lord will take them young so I don't have too! lau  You're doing great by pre planning! Wish I would have!

Crazy housewife with a tolerant husband, 1 daughter (rawr), 1 son, 1 westie, 2 german shepherds, 1 ragdoll cat, 1 RIR, 2 new hampshire reds, 6 Australorps, , 1 SLW, 2 barred rocks, 2 japanese bantams,  5 cochins, 3 polish, 6 Golden Comets, 5 buff brhamas, 5 EE, 2 speckled sussex, and 1 Rat named Lucky... LOVIN' LIFE!
Reply
Crazy housewife with a tolerant husband, 1 daughter (rawr), 1 son, 1 westie, 2 german shepherds, 1 ragdoll cat, 1 RIR, 2 new hampshire reds, 6 Australorps, , 1 SLW, 2 barred rocks, 2 japanese bantams,  5 cochins, 3 polish, 6 Golden Comets, 5 buff brhamas, 5 EE, 2 speckled sussex, and 1 Rat named Lucky... LOVIN' LIFE!
Reply
post #3 of 28

well the obvious answer is, into the stewpot. Alot of people don't feel comfortable doing this though and you can keep them as pets or find someone who will take them, and most likely butcher them. You could try living by the old farmers saying- an egg a day keeps the hatchet away...

post #4 of 28

My neighbour has chickens that are allll way too old to lay, and they just kind of hang around as pets. They free range all the time, so the population will disappear over time eventually.

I'm still in the process of getting rid of my hatchery hens, I gave away 10 of them and now I have 4 left including baldy hen who is meeting the killing cone and going to the barncats because no one wants to eat her, and the other 3 depending on how long and how well they come through their moults, will find new homes.


Edited by Chick_a_dee - 3/1/10 at 5:09pm
Lupin Farm [Labradoodles] + A Pretty Little Wilderness
Small Hobby Farm + Miniature Labradoodles
www.lupinfarm.com
Reply
Lupin Farm [Labradoodles] + A Pretty Little Wilderness
Small Hobby Farm + Miniature Labradoodles
www.lupinfarm.com
Reply
post #5 of 28

I would also say free range more often.
Your odds of them being around for long will drop dramatically.

post #6 of 28

They wokr around the yard as roving insect eaters, expecially ticks

The irony of life! One day you are the windshield and then the next - the bug!!

Reply

The irony of life! One day you are the windshield and then the next - the bug!!

Reply
post #7 of 28
Thread Starter 

I appreciate all the great and humorous advice. We have talked about it some more and have another question. We are looking at getting Red Star Hens and Rhode Island Red Hens, probably five of each. On my Pet Chicken, they are calling these dual purpose birds. I am assuming that this means they are good for boat laying and eating. My question now is, how good is a chicken like this to eat after three years?

post #8 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brooke 1 

I appreciate all the great and humorous advice. We have talked about it some more and have another question. We are looking at getting Red Star Hens and Rhode Island Red Hens, probably five of each. On my Pet Chicken, they are calling these dual purpose birds. I am assuming that this means they are good for boat laying and eating. My question now is, how good is a chicken like this to eat after three years?


I think the meat can be pretty tough when they are that age....hence the recommendation to use them in the stew pot. 

I have not butchered any chickens myself...but I would if my husband weren't so opposed to it.  I'll give them happy healthy years - plenty of space to live and free range during the day, all the chicken food they could ever eat, table scraps, safety at night, and I even provide them five cats to chase to their hearts-content!  My chicken really do live a good chicken-life.  So I am not opposed to giving them the best life has to offer a chicken in exchange for a few meals....

...but forget it - my husband will have nothing to do with it.  *sigh*

My back-up plan is to sell them in their 2nd summer (in which case someone else will probably cook them up), and order all new chickens to start again.

One Norwegian Fjord,  4 British Shorthair cats, One darling husband............and getting ready to start a new life in N.C. mountains (summer 2014 when youngest graduates from high school).

 

..............and (drum roll)...........one brand new Papillon puppy who joined us in November!!

Reply

One Norwegian Fjord,  4 British Shorthair cats, One darling husband............and getting ready to start a new life in N.C. mountains (summer 2014 when youngest graduates from high school).

 

..............and (drum roll)...........one brand new Papillon puppy who joined us in November!!

Reply
post #9 of 28

My girls have names, so they will be living their life out as pets. Could you eat something that you take care of everyday? I couldn't !  sickbyc

Jen

Mother to 1 son, 1 cat 20 1/2, two cats, Barnevelder, Welsummer, Lt Brahma, BO, , Dominique, BC Marans, White Rock, BR, Americauna, Cochin, RIRs, and 3 BJG Xs
If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then I will  hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.  II Chronicles 7: 14
Reply
Mother to 1 son, 1 cat 20 1/2, two cats, Barnevelder, Welsummer, Lt Brahma, BO, , Dominique, BC Marans, White Rock, BR, Americauna, Cochin, RIRs, and 3 BJG Xs
If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then I will  hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.  II Chronicles 7: 14
Reply
post #10 of 28

I let my old ladies retire.  They get to help keep the tick and insect population down.  However, many of my birds lay very well way past year 2 or 3.  I have 4 year old polish that seem to be laying just about every day right now.  I have a Speckled Sussex that just stopped laying last year at around age 7.

Currently selling Millie Fleur Cochin hatching eggs. Contact me for purchasing information.  Soon to be a preservationist of rare Icelandic Chickens! Read about them: http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=299038&p=1  NEW CRAZY EGG TRAIN http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=326027&p=1
Reply
Currently selling Millie Fleur Cochin hatching eggs. Contact me for purchasing information.  Soon to be a preservationist of rare Icelandic Chickens! Read about them: http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=299038&p=1  NEW CRAZY EGG TRAIN http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=326027&p=1
Reply
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Managing Your Flock
BackYard Chickens › BYC Forum › Raising BackYard Chickens › Managing Your Flock › What do you do with old chickens that stop laying?