Delawares for meat? Any suggestions?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by LegendsCreek, Feb 23, 2012.

  1. LegendsCreek

    LegendsCreek Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 23, 2012
    Foster, RI
    I have been reading that Delawares are great birds for meat. I want to start off with 12 of them, and when they start producing eggs, I want to then hatch them out and continue the process with incubating the eggs so that I have meat birds coming year round.

    I am not sure about going with any of the cornish birds because they grow too fast, and they can't be breed. Would love to hear opinions?
     
  2. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    True, heritage Dels are extremely hard to find. They've become quite rare. Most hatchery stock Delaware just aren't up to true type. The breed was endangered for quite awhile, but is making a come back. Unfortunately, most Delaware today have lots of cross breeding in their back ground.

    True to type, meaty Delaware birds would be fantastic, dual purpose meat birds. There are other fine choices too, if you can find a supplier of hefty birds. White Rocks, Cornish (not the X cross) Buckeye, etc.
     
  3. LegendsCreek

    LegendsCreek Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 23, 2012
    Foster, RI
    So white rocks are a good breed? Everytime I look on the hatchery websites, they always say that the meat birds won't do well with breeding. Why is that?
     
  4. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    Don't confuse the White Plymouth Rock with the hybrid, CX or Cornish Cross, or Cornish/Rock, or Jumbo Cornish Rock or whatever the hatcheries happen to call them. The White Plymouth Rock is a standard Rock, just like the Barred Rocks, only the white feathering is preferred for plucking and the WR is often larger than the BR.
     
  5. Egghead_Jr

    Egghead_Jr Overrun With Chickens

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  6. KatyTheChickenLady

    KatyTheChickenLady Bird of A Different Feather

    Dec 20, 2008
    Boise, Idaho
    Love your blog. After reading it I can say I think Delware is a perfect breed for you. As was previously mentioned get the best quality starter birds you can, often this means hatching eggs. You will only be sorely disapointed with what you get from the hatcheries - they serve a purpose but like McDonalds what you get rarely looks like the pictures. Buy an incubator and have some fun with it, and good luck on your farm adventure!
     
  7. LegendsCreek

    LegendsCreek Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 23, 2012
    Foster, RI
    Thank you for reading my blog!! Let me ask you though... Where am I to get eggs? Nobody around here is offering Delaware eggs, or anything of that sort. All the feed stores get their chicks from the hatcherys, and I have no idea how to start a new flock without getting them from hatcherys? I guess people do sell the eggs on here, I just have to get an incubator ready, and try to make a deal with someone. Are there any reputable people here on the forum who breed true delawares?
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2012
  8. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    Yes, there is a Delaware thread or two or three here on BYC. Read through these threads and send some private messages to some of the folks.
     
  9. aoxa

    aoxa Overrun With Chickens


    Hello there :) I love your blog too! I'm actually engaged to be married to my partner of nearly 8 years. It's always nice to see someone living the same lifestyle as I do. Not too often I see same sex couples who also are into the farm life.

    I have a delaware from a breeder, but I wouldn't really want to use this breed for meat. I'd rather use Buff Orpington (breeder stock), as even my 7 month old girl outweighs my 2 year old Delaware hen. She actually outweighed her at 4 months old.

    If I was going to have a breed to use for meat (idealistically) I would choose the BO. I plan to cross her to my barred rock rooster (as right now I don't have any BO male) and use the extra males for meat and the girls for eggs.
     
  10. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    Mt Healthy Hatchery has a line of White Rocks that are notable for their size. If you feel like you're gonna run out of time in securing Delaware this spring and need to continue the hunt for quality, heritage Delaware, at least you could get started in a few weeks with quality dual purpose birds. Just offering a suggestion.

    http://www.mthealthy.com/product/WR-sr
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2012
    1 person likes this.

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