Best Chicken for meat that will keep producing?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by Chicken Lady 87, Aug 31, 2014.

  1. Chicken Lady 87

    Chicken Lady 87 Hatching

    Aug 31, 2014
    My husband and I along with our kids are getting started into chickens and ducks. We want to know where are food comes from so that is why I am asking. We are wanting to get some chickens for meat but don't want to keep buying chicks every year. Is there a breed of chicken that grows fast and will possibly hatch out or produce eggs so we incubate them to keep the cycle going?

    We ate a lot of chicken as there is 2 adults and 3 kids in our family. Would like to go about this in the most economical way possible? Anyone have any thoughts on which breed or cross would be good?

    Also I know the Cornish crosses are the "best" meat birds but you can't keep them to breed and produce young so I am just wondering?

    Thank you!
  2. chikkenfriend

    chikkenfriend Songster

    Dec 2, 2013
    My Coop
  3. You probably want to look at heritage breeds, you won't get the same meat amount per time/feed (aka more costly per pound) but you will have consistent reproduction and meat quality generation after generation with little risk of the slew of hereditary issues many 'meat' hybrids have...
  4. Silver Silkie

    Silver Silkie In the Brooder

    May 10, 2013
    Fredericksburg, TX, USA
    You can take a look at Heritage Breeds, but then you could also look at dual-purpose breeds to. These will work perfectly for eggs and meat. My personal favorite is the Buff Orpington. I ordered three different breeds last year and these guys were the largest in the brooder. They grew fairly quickly, to my surprise. I ordered ten hens from a 90% guarantee on sexed birds hatchery, and of course one of them turned out to be a rooster. He is huge! He weighs at least ten pounds if not more. I plan to keep a few for eggs and butcher a few. I have also heard that these birds will reproduce very well, and love to sit on eggs. Hope this helps.

  5. FYI Buff Orpingtons are a heritage breed...
  6. AmericanMom

    AmericanMom Songster

    Aug 10, 2013
    We were given 10 free Cornish X's last spring...raised them and butchered...Like everyone talks about, they grow fast and there is a lot of meat on them birds...But like you we didn't want to have to keep buying chicks twice a year, instead opting to raise and breed our own... we have orpingtons, sexlinks,Jersey Giants and austalorps to name a few...we chose the more dual purpose breeds and we have butchers a Buff orp rooster and a Jersey Giant rooster and for us it was the perfect amount of meat, of course we didn't butcher until they were 4-5 months old so we dealt with alittle bit more toughness and bigger bones, but we don't eat a lot of fried chicken, we love it baked or roasted or Chicken and noodles in the winter. The flavor of home grown meat is awesome

    we also raise rabbits and we have found butchering at 3 months is the perfect size, if I want anything fried I'll fry up a mess of rabbit. :)
  7. Silver Silkie

    Silver Silkie In the Brooder

    May 10, 2013
    Fredericksburg, TX, USA
    Haha...I need to work on my chicken breeds. :)
  8. Bossroo

    Bossroo Songster

    Jun 15, 2008
    I have raised the " heritage " / " dual purpose" chickens for 50 years, then about 5 years ago switched to the CornishX . Why? These " heritage" and / or "dual purpose" birds do produce meat AND eggs but are medeocre at producing meat as well as eggs vs. the specialist types. Hands down, the Cornish X is the most efficient converter of feed to meat in the shortest time possible in all of chickendom. This x- bred bird is a TERMINAL CROSS and meant to be eaten. Breeding your own chickens is much more costly since you have to keep hens and a rooster for months on end to produce a few chicks for the table . Yea, I did this for years too , then did the math thing for breed my own vs. buying and found out the real truth . Oh, if you want eggs too... buy a chicken such as the Leghorn, that is known to outproduce the dual purpose chickens . If you want to know where your meat comes from... a hen and rooster mate, then the hen lays an egg, then the egg hatches into a chick. What does it matter who owns the hen and rooster.? Too, since you say that you want to raise ducks, get yourself the Khakie Campbell, they are an egg laying machine that outlays the Leghorn in egg numbers as well as egg-size. The Pekin duck is the king of meat production as it is used in commercial duck meat production Hmmm !... I had a Pekin drake and 4 hens which hatched their own 98 ducklings in one year. [​IMG]

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