6 week old jumbo cornish cross - 10 lbs - are they ready to process?

OPA Acres

Chirping
Jun 1, 2021
35
62
61
Hello,

This is our first year raising meat birds. We have jumbo cornish cross from cackle hatchery. They are 6 weeks, 3 days old --- we took a weight today and they are 10 pounds +/-

I know that they are usually processed around 8-10 weeks, but we are at butcher weight. Should we process now or wait another couple of weeks!

All of your experience/advice is appreciated!
 

Ridgerunner

Crossing the Road
13 Years
Feb 2, 2009
29,492
27,200
997
Southeast Louisiana
I'd butcher them at your first opportunity. It depends on how you feed them but 6 weeks isn't unusual for a butcher age. Some people do wait until they are larger but if they are big enough for you, get them before they start to have any problems.

You got to know when to hold 'em
Know when to fold 'em
Know when to walk away
And know when to run.

For your first time raising meaties I think you are holding four aces. Cash them in.
 

CNJ

Crowing
Oct 12, 2020
1,032
2,838
276
10 lbs is huge!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!You will need the extra large shrink bags and the largest killing cone. My 8 lb birds couldn't fit in my killing cone and I struggled to get them in the shrink wrap bags. I had to hang them by their feet, next time I will buy a street cone.
 
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OPA Acres

Chirping
Jun 1, 2021
35
62
61
Thanks to all who answered! We processed the birds at 7 weeks, 3 days and had an average dress weight around 6 pounds per bird.

We had one bird that had leg problems that started around week 4, and he/she came in significantly lighter. We only had one other bird that had trouble walking on processing day. None of our other birds had any mobility issues. We did lose one bird around week 4 after a really hot day followed by really loud/intense thunderstorms that night (not sure if it was the heat, storm, or genetics or a combination that caused the death of that bird).

They were raised on Purina Flock Raiser and they were given food 24/7 from day one until the day before we processed them (when we held their food). We had them in chicken tractors that we moved daily to fresh grass.

We used 11" roll food saver bags and vacuum sealed them before freezing...all of the birds fit, but we did break the majority of the birds down (breast, thigh, leg, wings - and back/carcass) so that we could thaw what we wanted to use.

I just wanted to document that information for anyone who might find this thread in the future.
 

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Parront

Crossing the Road
Jul 27, 2017
6,522
27,667
907
Prescott, AZ
Thanks to all who answered! We processed the birds at 7 weeks, 3 days and had an average dress weight around 6 pounds per bird.

We had one bird that had leg problems that started around week 4, and he/she came in significantly lighter. We only had one other bird that had trouble walking on processing day. None of our other birds had any mobility issues. We did lose one bird around week 4 after a really hot day followed by really loud/intense thunderstorms that night (not sure if it was the heat, storm, or genetics or a combination that caused the death of that bird).

They were raised on Purina Flock Raiser and they were given food 24/7 from day one until the day before we processed them (when we held their food). We had them in chicken tractors that we moved daily to fresh grass.

We used 11" roll food saver bags and vacuum sealed them before freezing...all of the birds fit, but we did break the majority of the birds down (breast, thigh, leg, wings - and back/carcass) so that we could thaw what we wanted to use.

I just wanted to document that information for anyone who might find this thread in the future.
That sounds like very good results, on the first time raising these guys! I am trying to remember, is the Purina Flock Raiser 18% protein?
 

cmobley

Crowing
7 Years
Mar 4, 2015
1,091
960
271
saraland alabama
I wanna get into raising these birds to stock my freezer. I don't really do any chicken stock saving or anything like that but I do love grilled bbq chicken and fried chicken. Is the meat of these birds comparable to market birds or do yall think the meat is more stringy or pretty much the same? Are these birds better as soup birds or do you use them like you would a store bought bird?
 

Molpet

Enabler
Premium Feather Member
7 Years
Sep 7, 2015
14,445
59,159
1,162
New Lenox township. Illinois USA
My Coop
My Coop
I wanna get into raising these birds to stock my freezer. I don't really do any chicken stock saving or anything like that but I do love grilled bbq chicken and fried chicken. Is the meat of these birds comparable to market birds or do yall think the meat is more stringy or pretty much the same? Are these birds better as soup birds or do you use them like you would a store bought bird?
Same CX as store birds. The ones that free range are a little firmer than ones confined.
 

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