Butchered today - Cornish Rock vs Black Broiler - WARNING!!! **GRAPHIC PICS**

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by debir1966, Sep 9, 2012.

  1. debir1966

    debir1966 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We decided it was time to process our Cornish Rocks from Ideal Hatchery, hatch date June 27th, so they were 10 1/2 weeks old. I wish I had a scale, but we don't, I can guestemate they were between 7-9 pounds each, butchered weight, sans giblets.

    After we got the Cornish Rocks processesed, I decided I didn't want to do this again in 2-4 weeks LOL, so we went ahead and also processed the Black Broilers from the same hatch date (I had gotten them to keep one rooster to pair with my DP hens to raise my own meaties next year and also to compare growth rates).

    I can say, I much prefer WHITE meat birds. The black feathers left pigment in the pores and it looks rather unappetizing. Here is a pic of the largest broiler next to an average cornish rock.
    [​IMG]

    Excuse the missed feathers and over-hot-water skin, it has been 20 plus years since we butchered chickens :)

    The black broilers are about 3-4 pounds, roughly half the size of the cornish rocks. I think they would have been close in weight in another 3 or 4 weeks.. maybe.

    We kept the cornish whole and cut-up the broilers. I finished cleaning and plucking stubborn feathers with a pair of tweezers once we got them in the house.

    They were raised together, so I am curious to see if there is a taste difference also. But it will be a while before we can answer that question ... not hungry for chicken for a while I think LOL.

    It took my husband and myself, with our teen son halfheartedly helping to pluck, about 3 - 3 1/2 hours to do 9 chickens. I originally had wanted to order 25! I think next time if I convince myself to order 25, I will have to bribe someone to come help butcher for 5 of the chickens LOL.

    My goal is to put 52 chickens a year in our freezer (we eat chicken about once a week). I had planned on doing two batches of cornish cross/rocks twice a year (10-20 each batch, spring and fall) and let our hens hatch out the rest during the spring/summer.

    Next time we are hoping to have a better set-up with a hoop-house/pen for just the meaties and possibly try free-ranging them when they get big enough (about 6 weeks or so until process day).

    We also have 5 BBW turkeys out of the same hatch date. Hoping the biggest is going to be dinner for T-day :)
     
  2. Oregon Blues

    Oregon Blues Overrun With Chickens

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    Look at the difference in the size.

    Myself, I prefer a big bird for my efforts to butcher. I'm looking forward to hearing about any differences in flavor.

    If you plan on doing chickens as an on-going project, you might consider getting a plucker. It sure makes it easier and faster.
     
  3. debir1966

    debir1966 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oregon Blues - me too on the big bird, especially when we did all the raising, etc. Might not be such a big deal if the hens do the raising LOL. We have been talking about getting a plucker - they are pretty spendy - but if we do a couple batches of "BIG" meat chickens a year, I am thinking it might be worth it LOL, especially if it is just us doing it. The plucking is what took the longest! I wonder how good those pluckers are and if they bruise the meat at all. Been reading some posts on them and people seem pretty happy with the results from them.
     
  4. Oregon Blues

    Oregon Blues Overrun With Chickens

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    I've got an EZ Plucker and with the chickens, it gets them really clean. I will have to pull a couple of pin feathers that are in crannies that are difficult for the plucker to reach. But not many.

    It's money for the plucker, but I take really good care of it and I suspect that if I ever wanted to sell it, I could get fairly close to what I paid. Especially since inflation keeps the prices of everything going up. In a couple of years, a new one will cost a lot more than it does now.,

    I use the plucker for the Cornish Cross and also for ducks and geese. It will get a trial run on some turkeys closer to Thanksgiving. My family does 25-50 birds at a time and the plucker makes the job tolerable.

    It's not a good purchase unless you know that you will be butchering and plucking every year. It's too much money for a one time use.

    If you compare the cost of paying to have birds processed, though, the plucker pays for itself really quickly. It's $12 to have a duck processed locally and I've done 35 ducks this year. Do the math. It's a big savings to process at home.
     
  5. debir1966

    debir1966 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for so much info Oregon Blues! My goals is 52ish chickens and 5 turkeys a year (just for our family). I have thought about doing some share-raising where we raise a group of birds for us and 1 or more other people and the other people pay for the feed, we provide the facility and care.

    Next spring I will be raising a batch of cornish by themselves (this years batch was raised with our laying hen chicks) to see how much it costs to feed them until processing age. I still think it would be cost prohibitive to other people because it would double the cost of their chickens, which could be between $12 and $18 per bird, but they are charging between $3-$4 per pound on craigslist, which is about the same price (figuring a 4-5 pound bird).

    I think that the plucker would be worth it just for the birds we want for our family, even if we do not do any share-raising! After plucking 9 chickens for about 3 hours LOL, it sounds pretty darn good to me :)
     
  6. tjhardy

    tjhardy New Egg

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    Many co-ops and some county extension offices rent out whole poultry butchering rigs for 35-50 dollars a weekend. Includes killing cones, scalder, and plucker. It's a great deal if you can find one near you. This is what we plan to do when we butcher our birds later this year.
     
  7. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    Which EZ Plucker did you get? We're going in 1/2 with a friend on one. He raises turkeys, so we need something that can handle them also.
     

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