? about cornish x for newbie

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by chkinut, Feb 3, 2012.

  1. chkinut

    chkinut Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 25, 2010
    Leesburg, Ohio
    hi! i'm not new to chickens, but i AM new to purchasing cornish x. my friend and i would like to get a few for our families to try this "butchering your own chicken" thing out....lol. anyway, i do NOT live in the country, but i have had chickens for over 2 years without any problems. no roosters are allowed. so my question is, would i be able to "get away with" having rooster cornish x's? when do they start to crow? if we butchered at 6 weeks, would we be safe? also, at what age do you normally butcher anyway? 6 weeks? 7? and are the cornish x much easier to pluck because they are so young? (verses plucking a 2 yr old hen) thanks for any help. oh, also, do the roosters taste better than the hens? or are they the same?
     
  2. americanvalkyrie

    americanvalkyrie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Reno, NV
    Limited experience here...

    But, a month ago, I considered filling in the gaps of a hatchery order with cornish crosses. I figured, since they're going to be butchered in 6-8 weeks, it won't be much of a problem. I looked up threads here, talking about cornish crosses. Two things that popped up a lot... they're LOUD and they STINK worse than the average chicken. After considering the toll it would take on relationships with my neighbors, and balancing out the cost per bird after feed, and sharing space with my good laying hens, I decided to keep spending more for a healthy-raised grocery store chicken. I didn't want to jeopardize relationships, which might make it more difficult to keep my laying hens.

    But, like I said, I have little experience here. Even as a kid, we never raised cornish crosses. We butchered the roosters of our cross-bred laying flock.
     
  3. booker81

    booker81 Redneck Tech Girl

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    Apr 18, 2010
    Mid-MI
    The cornish X won't crow like roos, but yes, they'll "talk" a lot. A lot more than layers, but not as loud (compared to egg songs and crowing).

    They DO require a higher level of manure maintenance. It is do-able - you can't do DLM like you can with layers - it would be a nasty soup of poo in a week when they are about 6 weeks old. I like to add shavings daily or every other day to make sure they are neat and clean.

    The feathers are easier more because there seem to be less. They usually don't grow many feathers on the chest area (laying down too much), and their young age means very little to no "hairs". The skin is thinner and lends much better to roasting for crisp and tender skin than an older bird.

    I don't find any difference in taste, maybe a bit in size. I process at 7-8 weeks or so.
     
  4. galanie

    galanie Treat Dispenser No More

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    Colmesneil,TX
    Roosters generally don't start crowing till after 12 weeks or so, therefore you're pretty safe not to have anyone crowing. Never say never, there will be the rare exception but that would be very rare for cornish x.
     
  5. chkinut

    chkinut Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 25, 2010
    Leesburg, Ohio
    wow, interesting! well, i already ordered 4 from my TSC (2 birds for me, 2 for my friend, but i will raise all 4). so 4 isn't a big number, and it's worth a try. but i will be on the lookout for major poop and noise! lol! then i figure if it doesn't work out, it's only 6 weeks that we have to deal with it. and i'm excited too cuz we usually keep 8 laying hens. we came up with a neat idea to do the dual-purpose breeds only from now on and cull 4 every year and get 4 chicks to replace them. like right now, i have 4 girls who will be 2 next year, so they will be up for the choppin' block next year. but from what i've read on BYC, the dual purpose breeds taste different (not as good?) as the cornish X. i've read they would be best in a stew or crock pot at 2 yrs old?
     
  6. ScottyHOMEy

    ScottyHOMEy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The Cornish X is a chicken. It is the same bird that makes it to the supermarket as a broiler or roaster. Tyson or Perdue may (probably) have their own strains which are in some way different from the strain you or I can get from the hatcheries.

    For return on your investment, 8 weeks is about primo. They're a better eating/tasting bird that the DPs and a durned sight better than anything in the supermarket. They will be clucking at times when the layers are quiet, but I've never heard them get obstreperous, low clucking at most.

    The remarks around here, when one comes onto the table, tend to be about more meat on the bird and the lack of the aftertaste from the commercial brine the big packing houses use.

    And, yes, a 2 year old chicken of any stripe is best stewed.
     
  7. galanie

    galanie Treat Dispenser No More

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    There are many that would disagree with Scotty on the issue of cornish X being tastier than DP breeds, me included. But on every other aspect, he is correct.
     
  8. chkinut

    chkinut Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 25, 2010
    Leesburg, Ohio
    thanks guys! i actually agree with the people that think you should have strictly meat birds and egg bird instead of the dual purpose. but since we don't live in the country, can only have very limited birds, then i decided on the dual purpose....plus a few meaties every year. this should be an interesting experience. i guess i DO wonder though, if we DID have the space, what the heck would you do with a bunch of Leghorn hens when they are "spent"? just process a bunch of scrawny birds i guess. lol.
     

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