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Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by dan10, Oct 28, 2011.
What do you consider is the best meat birds
Depends on what ?
Depends on the term "best". Best for what? More meat? Easiest to convert feed to meat? Cheapest to raise? Easiest to finish? Best for raising all naturally or on free range? Best tasting? Best for processing? Healthiest?
Quote:Lets go with best tasting .I have been wondering myself which bird would be better for the table and taste is everything.
I guess that depends on what kind of meat you like the taste of. Grocery store meat is very bland compared to some chicken you can raise at home for meat. The texture might also be different. Age plays a factor, type of bird, etc.
Anytime anyone asks me about raising meat chickens, I usually suggest that they start with something easy and tasty that is intended for butcher - some sort of broiler bird. There are many debates on here about whether or not a broiler is better or a dual purpose (heritage style) chicken is better...there are so many factors to consider. Taste is HUGE - but it may cost you a lot more money and time to do one over the other. If you buy general dual purpose stock from a hatchery - those birds are usually smaller and not as meaty as their heritage counterparts. If you go that route, I'd recommend finding a reputable breeder.
SO, I'd sat go with something easy like a Red Broiler or Freedom Ranger....but the next person may say otherwise! Many folks on here swear by Cornish Crosses, but then again, some don't like them as much.
My Red Broilers were absolutely delicious. We still have meat in the freezer and we wont have to buy chicken again for quite some time.
There are stickies at the top of this forum section. You should read through those because many of your questions may be answered there.
Let us know what you decide!
Most meat chickens are killed at a young age and so their flavor is comparable. An older DP bird, say a retired layer or 5 mo. old roo is going to have a richer, nuttier flavor though it will be less tender.
They all taste like....chicken.
I think I messed up on the chickens I started with. I bought barred rocks for both eggs and meat.For egg laying they do well but for meat ,it takes awhile to grow them out. I admit I don't know a whole lot about raising them for meat but that was the idea we had when we bought them.I am going to process two this weekend and it will be my first time doing so.I should have done more studying up on it before buying them as meat birds.
It could be also that I just waited longer than I should have but I was waiting until their chests to fill out really good. I would say he is around 7 months old and the other is a year old.Both are mean so they will not be missed.
My egg layers are another problem.I bought 2 delawares and they are a year old now and I bet I didn't get 10 eggs from those two combined.They will also be going in the soup pot.I have had one ee hen for 4 months now and not one egg from her.
I was wondering if hatchery chickens would be better for layers.
My hatchery birds were and are excellent layers. May I give you some tips on getting good layers? The best DP breeds I can recommend for sheer egg laying proficiency, hardiness, longevity, good mothering, and good feed thriftiness are these: White Rocks, Black Aussies, New Hamps, RIRs, Barred Rocks, White Leghorns.
Try to avoid the production layers....they do lay well but they don't last long, are not hardy, and do not reproduce themselves well.
As for getting enough meat without the long wait, CX are your best bet. Check out my thread on raising them under a broody and free ranging them with my layer flock to see how easy and cheaply they can be raised. It doesn't have to be complicated and messy if it's done right.
If taste is your basic consideration... check out how many cook books are out there with recipes for best tasting chicken. Also, consider how much the top chefs are paid compared to other cooks.