At what age can I kill my roosters for the pot?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by chayla, Jan 15, 2010.

  1. chayla

    chayla Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 22, 2009
    I have five new little chickens and I don't know how to tell the difference from a male or hen. I should imagine that there will be a couple that are roosters and as we are trying to be self sufficence, will have to kill them for the pot. We had a beautiful rooster a couple of years ago and by time my husband killed it (with a gun, mind you), he was far to old.... but he was so beautiful.... *sigh*..
    I would appriciate any help with this...
    Thank you : )
     
  2. TexasVet

    TexasVet Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 12, 2008
    Willis TX
    I usually cull mine when they first start to crow. Every time I've let them live a while longer, they ended up being inedible... dark, stringy, and tough. Once those male hormones kick in, it causes changes in the texture of the meat.

    Kathy, Bellville TX
    www.ChickenTrackin.com
     
  3. cw

    cw Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 11, 2009
    green co.
    i just killed 1 one month shy of being a year old, plenty big but was tough, even after brining in the fridge, i would say 6 months would be prime if it was anything but a cornish x
     
  4. chayla

    chayla Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 22, 2009
    They are just X's I think. Rooster is a white sussex .... maybe and mum could be the white sussex and maybe the brown 'hatchery' ones. Who knows...: ) Yes.. I know just what you mean, as that's what he was like. : )
     
  5. cw

    cw Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 11, 2009
    green co.
    if its a cornish x at 8 weeks but you said a white sussex, i would butcher as soon as he hit a weight you were happy with, which could take 3 months
     
  6. chayla

    chayla Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 22, 2009
    I'm not sure if that's what he is, but I'll go with the three months as no matter what they are, they should be tender at that age.... right? : ) Ohhh... yes... and maybe not wait for my 'big softy' of a husband to do the 'deed'. hehehe
     
  7. dancingbear

    dancingbear Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 2, 2008
    South Central KY
    Chayla, you might want to do a forum search on how to cook older birds. There are LOTS of us on here who cook older roosters and hens all the time. The male hormones DO NOT ruin the meat, but you can't cook an older bird (especially when they are dual purpose or heritage breeds) the same way you'd cook a 6 week or 8 week old broiler such as a Cornish X.

    Most of the bad results people get with older birds are due to incorrect cooking methods.

    Just remember, the crock pot is your friend. They all get tender eventually, in the crock pot. Brining overnight helps with the 'stringy' factor, though if you take the meat off the bones and chop it, to use in tacos, tamales, BBQ sandwiches, etc., you'll never notice any stringiness.
     
    1 person likes this.
  8. dancingbear

    dancingbear Chillin' With My Peeps

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    South Central KY
    Quote:Do you mean Cornish X's, or do you mean cross-breeds? If Cornish X's, you should butcher them anywhere from 6-10 weeks, earlier for fryers, later for big roasters.

    If you mean cross breeds, see my earlier post.

    Good luck, they both make good eating, you just need to use appropriate methods for the type and age of the birds.
     
  9. chayla

    chayla Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 22, 2009
    Ahhhh.... I've just bought a 'solar oven'.. which means that it will take all day to cook a chook. Sounds like the perfect way to go. Thanks for those suggestions.... but... what brining... must be an americian term. : )
     
  10. fargosmom

    fargosmom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Brining is soaking the bird in a salt-water solution - the meat absorbs the fluid and gets more moist, plus takes up some of the salt for flavor. I've never tried it but I've heard . . .
     

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