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Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by BarredBuff, Dec 13, 2009.
What characteristics do you look for in a soon to be cull chicken?
It depends on what you're keeping chickens for. If they're for eggs, cull the ones who don't lay that well. If it's for show, cull the ones who don't fit the breed standard. If they're for pets, cull the mean ones. Ect.
I don't think you should kill a chicken because they don't fit your standards. Give them to someone who will enjoy them.
I do because their are atleast three that need culling out a really old barred rock, one with a swollen eye and its been swollen for two months and looks worse everyday, and a rir who has not grown that much since we got it and i will need roost room for the pullets that the chicks i am ordering will become
Just a reminder that "cull" does not *necessarily* mean kill. It just means "remove from the flock".
As far as not killing them, until/unless the entire world becomes vegetarian, I'd far rather see people eat chickens (such as excess cockerels) that were raised well and happily at home, than buy factory-farmed chicken meat.
Assuming we're talking about culling in a breeding flock, here, to me "basic good health (including lack of significant defects such as crossed beak)" and "easygoing temperament" are the biggest priorities, followed by "body type correct for the breed", followed rather distantly by anything else like color or comb points or whatever. But everyone has their own goals and purposes, so one person's criteria may not be useful for another's.
(e.t.a - the one with the eye problem and the one that is not growing would seem the most obvious first priorities, unless the eye problem seems noncontagious and fixable and the bird has *very excellent* characteristincs otherwise. The old cock, 'sup to you how many to keep but certainly some people do remove the oldest ones from the flock)
Good luck, have fun,
Quote:The OP didn't say, "kill," .... said, "cull." Cull does not always mean to kill. It means to remove it from your stock, in one way or another. You can sell it, give it away, butcher it, etc ....
Well if I have enough roosters, all the young roos get culled. If I am doing araucanas, everything with a tail gets culled, unless it has awesome tufts. If the hens got too old and are not laying.....cull and set some eggs. For me, its the big picture. If its just for eggs, its not worth it financially, so I have to look at how much help I get with not using the lawnmower and the price of meat I'm not spending, as well as the eggs. I cull, because the meat is one of the benefits I got into chickens for. I could buy chicken meat, but someone killed that bird too; it may not have been me, but it did get killed.