Deciding on Turkey Breed

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by protodon, Nov 19, 2009.

  1. protodon

    protodon Chillin' With My Peeps

    390
    2
    131
    Mar 3, 2009
    Nottingham,PA
    After much thinking and the fact that I now know how to butcher my own chickens. I decided that I'd like to get some turkeys next year. Originally I decided I wanted Narragansett because I like the look of them and they are a heritage breed so they could use some help. I was thinking that I might just want a breeding trio and perhaps I would sell any other I hatch and also butcher some for Thanksgiving although someone introduced the idea that I could butcher them all year long because you can eat turkey any time of the year. I actually never thought of that.

    Anyway, I then came across Midget Whites. I never considered them because I personally find white birds to be ugly despite the fact that they may dress nicer. I would rather have a pretty bird walking around the yard for a few months, than a pretty bird sitting on the table for 1 day...or 5 minutes before people dig in. But their smaller size appeals to me since i don't have too much space and whatever birds I have would be free range If I were to butcher them through the year, I wouldn't need a 20 or 30 pound turkey. 10 lbs or less would be more than enough.

    Now my questions:

    If I kept both breeds as free range would they breed each other considering their size difference? I'd like to keep them purebred if I were to propogate either breed.

    Would it be feasible to just keep Narragansett's and just butcher earlier for a small bird? WOuld the breast dimensions for a younger Narragansett be similar to those of a finished Midget White?

    Are there any Midget Narragansetts? I think that's really what I need haha I've heard of Midget Bronze but I don't believe they exist any longer.
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2009
  2. Frogdogtimestwo

    Frogdogtimestwo Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 21, 2008
    I am a new turkey owner, but I chuckled when you stated you don't like to see a white bird. I am the same way, I did not want white chickens or turkeys in my yard. Well I ended up going with the midget whites for the same reasons you stated, they are the perfect breed for our small acreage and family needs. They are the sweetest birds, I had to resist giving them names or I would not have been able to eat them. I think even though they are white, the toms are gorgeous and their size is perfect.
     
  3. Steve_of_sandspoultry

    Steve_of_sandspoultry Overrun With Chickens

    If you kept them together they would inter breed but all you have to do is seperate them during breeding season. the rest of the year you can let them run together. The Midget White is our favorite table bird not by size but by taste.

    If you butcher a larger turkey younger they would have the same weight as a lighter bird but they just wouldn't be as filled out if that makes sense. You would have more weight in bones etc since they have a larger frame.

    We don't eat that many "whole" turkeys anymore since we started skinning and cutting them up.

    Steve in NC
     
  4. protodon

    protodon Chillin' With My Peeps

    390
    2
    131
    Mar 3, 2009
    Nottingham,PA
    Can anyone tell me what the size difference is between the Narragansetts and thE midget Whites? I know the pound differences but it would be nice to get a visual.
     
  5. onthespot

    onthespot Deluxe Dozens

    7,187
    20
    271
    Mar 29, 2008
    Riverside/Norco, CA
    Midget Whites are beautiful! I got this little guy from sandspoultry here on BYC.

    [​IMG]
     
  6. Steve_of_sandspoultry

    Steve_of_sandspoultry Overrun With Chickens

    Hey I recognize that guy, he has my nose.

    Here are some more Midget pics.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    Steve in NC
     
  7. jenjscott

    jenjscott Mosquito Beach Poultry

    3,701
    12
    223
    May 24, 2008
    Southeast Arkansas
    Steve, do you have any pictures of midgets with another breed, or with a person, so we can appreciate the size? I really can't get a feel for it from these pictures.
     
  8. protodon

    protodon Chillin' With My Peeps

    390
    2
    131
    Mar 3, 2009
    Nottingham,PA
  9. Steve_of_sandspoultry

    Steve_of_sandspoultry Overrun With Chickens

    The hens are about 10 to 12 pounds the toms and 20. I'll try to get something to scale this weekend.


    Steve
     
  10. SimplyForties

    SimplyForties Chillin' With My Peeps

    891
    3
    141
    May 4, 2009
    Carroll County, Va
    I don't know about the midget whites but I love my Narragansetts!
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by