Dual purpose birds for meat

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by kesrchicky16, Sep 25, 2017.

  1. kesrchicky16

    kesrchicky16 Songster

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    I tried zip tie name badges and they all fell off within a month. I need to retag a couple birds cause my oldest I've been going off ugly feather markings and with molt every is staring to look the same.
     
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

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    I don't know what your "zip tie name badges" looked like but just plain 7" colored zip ties work well for me. Colored zip ties may be a challenge to find, I got mine off of the internet, but electricians use them to mark lines. I get them tight enough so they can't slide off over the foot but I have to go back and check them every now and them to make sure they aren't getting too tight as the chicken grows.
     
  3. kesrchicky16

    kesrchicky16 Songster

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    I used plain colored zip ties and found them broken on the ground. Maybe I had a cheaper quality.
     
  4. kesrchicky16

    kesrchicky16 Songster

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    I just realized I never explained the reasoning for the egg color in the bread rotation. I want to know what the egg donor is. I want to be able to say this is a RIR×silver laced Wyandotte cross. If all my eggs are similar colors then I'm left with only knowing what daddy is. There are so many options for feather pattern within each egg color. Rocks, buff Orpington, speckled Sussex all lay similar light brown eggs but are very different birds. But I can tell you exactly how often my EE lays and I know she was the egg donor for my chick. God only knows which eggs come from the rest of my flock.
     
  5. triplepurpose

    triplepurpose Songster

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    You should check out this article:
    https://livestockconservancy.org/images/uploads/docs/cookingwheritagechicken.pdf

    It basically corroborates what others have explained so well on here but also lays the historical context out very clearly which I think really helps.

    We slaughter most of our dominique cockerels by around 3 months and split them in half with poultry shears (quick and easier to clean that way, and ready for marinade and bbq). backbones, feet, organs etc can be saved too for stock and other uses. This is traditional broiler age, and I think it makes sense with flocks that are primarily focused on eggs, because it allows you to cull all but a few potential breeders before they are old enough to start crowing, require more space, and generally become a handful: crow, spar, chase the hens, and really start to wolf the feed. but they are still big enough where one of the halves, grilled, makes for a single satisfying serving with sides. By producing mainly broilers (heritage broilers, not to be confused with modern hybrid broilers) we still get some nice dinners but we save on feed and don't need extensive separate housing or to put in a lot of extra effort beyond what is required already in raising replacement pullets.

    At least, thats what we lean toward nowadays.

    I also think size, in and of itself, is totally overrated. A meal is a meal, and it's still enjoyable regardless of the weight of the amount of meat incorporated into it. I'm more interested in quality and flavor than in volume and find that much more relevant. Whether I eat a quarter pound of chicken with a half pound of mashed potatoes or a eighth of a pound of meat with 5/8 of a pound of mashed potatoes isn't really what makes a huge difference to us--but raising and buying feed for 8 or 10 rowdy hungry cockerels for an extra month or two really does make an impact on our lives. :)

    BTW I have to say, it also bugs me too when people obsess over the finished weight of a bird but then throw out the organs, necks, and feet--here they are so keen on feed to meat conversion and growth rates, but they are throwing away a significant portion of the bird's total food value potential! :) (I understand if they are concerned with profit margins on marketable product, of course, thats different). Heck, some people even use the intestines and heads too, in places where people really can't afford to waste food...

    Good luck!
     
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2017
  6. cavemanrich

    cavemanrich Enabler

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    When I was a little bitty boy many moons ago, my mother would take the intestine and clean it. She then would wrap it around the drumstick and tie it off. Then cook . I ate it and did not really think what it was. Your statement above brought pleasant memories back from my childhood.:hugs
     
    triplepurpose likes this.
  7. barn206

    barn206 Songster

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    I am so thinking of chicken liver pate right now... I can only imagine how great it would taste from fresh chicken... yum!
     
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  8. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

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    That makes sense. The problem with hatchery EE's is that not all lay colored eggs but you can probably figure a way around that. Maybe get extras and only keep the ones that lay colored eggs. When I get hatchery birds to add to the flock I get extras and only keep the best anyway. You might consider having white egg layers in your rotation too, those can be pretty clear. Leghorn is not the only breed that lays white eggs.

    I don't trust hatchery birds to lay the shade of brown they are supposed to but Marans and Welsummers should be easy to tell from some that lay really light brown or tinted eggs.

    On the other topic, when Mom cooked a chicken, male or female, to feed her five kids some of the pieces on the platter were gizzard, liver, neck, and back. It seems like she should have included the heart but she didn't. There is a surprising amount of meat on the neck. Breading the pieces stretches them even further.
     
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  9. kesrchicky16

    kesrchicky16 Songster

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    I was going to make my own EE. Buy the pure bred blue layers. White is definitely an option. I've never had a white egg chicken. Good thing I have time to research breed standards. I'm sure I'll have about everything before I'm too old to care for them. LOL
     
    Ridgerunner and cavemanrich like this.

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