BB Turkeys

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by kns500, Sep 14, 2009.

  1. kns500

    kns500 New Egg

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    Sep 14, 2009
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    I bought 9 baby turkeys from Tractor Supply this past spring and was sure to let them know they were for pets and asked a lot of questions. Sadly they did not tell me that these turkeys were for eating and not pets. We are vegetarian and I am making myself sick at the thought of them either dying a sad death underneath their own weight or selling them to people who will eat them. I am miserable:( What a hard lesson to learn. I had a few other turkeys who are good pets and as these BB turkeys grew I certainly noticed a big difference in their behavior, namely eating anything that came near them. I don't know what else to do besides sell them for a quick death to be eaten or let them die (who knows how long they could suffer before they did) and let the meat go to waste anyway. Any thoughts?
     
  2. phoenixmama

    phoenixmama Chillin' With My Peeps

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    A friend of mine had a BBB that they kept around for a few years...he was 60+ lbs when they had to butcher him.

    Look at it this way...they are likely having a much better life with you than any Butterball turkey could hope for. If you don't want to do the "dirty work" yourself, I suppose you should sell them to someone you know...and can assure you that they will have the most humane death possible. Do you live in an area where there is a big locavore/organic/sustainable farming crowd? If so, then I'm sure you'll be able to find someone to take them that would understand your concern.

    By the way (off topic here)...I don't know why you are all vegetarian (not debating the issue here) but when I read Michael Pollan's book "The Omnivore's Delimma" there was a story about a PETA member that was a vegetarian who came to Joel Salatin's farm. He came to the conclusion that the only way to ethically eat an animal was to do the deed yourself...in effect, taking personal responsibility for the animal's death. So, Joel helped him butcher a chicken. I thought it was an interesting way to look at the whole thing.

    If on the other hand you decide to keep them, you shouldn't feed them the high protein game bird/turkey feed. You'll want to keep them on a lower protein feed so they don't get so big quite as fast. It would likely be easier on them in the long run.
     
  3. phoenixmama

    phoenixmama Chillin' With My Peeps

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    By the way...[​IMG]
     
  4. ()relics

    ()relics horse/dog shrink

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    If, in fact, your birds are Broad breasted (BB) whites,they will not be able to live the normal life of a heritage breed bird. I think you already can see that they are bred to be concerned about 1 thing: eating....soon they will grow too large for their skeletons to care their body weight....They will begin to spend most of the time that they aren't eating just laying around....Unfortunately their end, if left alone , will be breaking a bone or the eventual inability to get on their feet....They cannot reproduce, at least not most of the time...they are simply bred as table fare...
    As distasteful as it seems you should send them on their way....Put an ad in the paper or on CL and someone will make sure that they aren't wasted.....Or give them to a family in need..the holiday season is right around the corner....JMO
    ....if we weren't supposed to eat them, Why are they made out of meat?....Again JMO
     
  5. phoenixmama

    phoenixmama Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Great suggestion ()relics...

    Having them processed and given to a family in need would be a great way to find a resolution to your situation. You would probably have to give the birds directly to families though...these days food banks, homeless shelters, etc. have ridiculous rules about what types of things they can use and what they can't. I bet if you contacted Catholic charities, Salvation Army, or other such organization...they could help you come up with a way to donate them directly to a needy family. Of course, you'd have to have them processed first.
     
  6. melody123

    melody123 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 10, 2009
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    If you really want to keep them, then you will have to control how much feed they eat. Give them lots of fruits and vegetables and very little grain or turkey feed. If possible, give them lots of exercise by having them free range for bugs and grass.

    Basically, put them on Jenny Craig or weight watchers.
     
  7. farmerlor

    farmerlor Chillin' With My Peeps

    I'm a vegetarian too but my family is not so I do cook meat for them. Our first year of raising turkeys we bought BB turks too. By the time we took them to the butcher I really felt like we were doing them a favor as they were so heavy they mostly laid around all day and I think they were starting to get miserable. But then I'm a farmer from a long line of farmers so I have no real ethical dilemma about processing an animal for meat (even though I don't eat it) when it was raised with respect and killed as mercifully as possible.
     
  8. AHappychick

    AHappychick Wanna-be Farmer

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    I gave PC some BBW turkeys and he is becoming attatched to one of them so I am interested in responces. I remember a thread where someone had kept meatie chooks alive by a regiment of aspirin and a diet I think that a similar program could be adapted for the turkeys as well.

    Hopefully they will respond, if not try a search for Cornish x but not in the meat section
     
  9. kns500

    kns500 New Egg

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    Sep 14, 2009
    Michigan
    Thank you everyone for your replies and support! I did post them on Craiglist and someone was supposed to come last night to buy three of them.....and then didn't show up. I still have it posted on Craiglist and have a sign posted in the front yard, but I will look into the organic farming community. That is a good idea. We do live out in the country and I know in the Ann Arbor area they must have something along that line. Also, donating to a needy family is another great idea.
     
  10. kns500

    kns500 New Egg

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    Sep 14, 2009
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    In response to relics, humans are made out of meat too you know and we don't eat each other;) No seriously, it's just my personal choice for about 15 years now. The thought makes me physically ill, but I have no problem with people who raise their animals with respect and then eat them. I have a problem with factory farming.
     

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