first time with meat birds

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by Richard, Jun 14, 2008.

  1. Richard

    Richard Out Of The Brooder

    57
    0
    29
    May 8, 2008
    Antioch IL
    This is my first post even thou I have been reading the forums for awhile now. I have 24 CXs that are 6 weeks old today.The roosters weigh an average 6.7 pounds the hens average 5.4 pounds. And yes they are stinking to high heaven. My 84 year old Dad (who claims he can pluck them all by hand in 30 mins) says they are ready to butcher.Now I think that I should wait till they are older ( about 8 weeks old) since they are all healthy and doing fine I have only lost 2 since I received them as day olds. I in the 1 st week it just died and I culled 1 in the 3 rd week for a leg problem.I would also like to mention that My dear old Dad has not processed a chicken in about 58 years sorry for the long post
     
  2. dangerouschicken

    dangerouschicken Will Barter For Coffee

    2,407
    14
    213
    May 6, 2007
    Columbia Gorge, OR
    Don't underestimate those Dad's when it comes to plucking. My grandpa is the same age and he can still get his plucking groove on (not to mention skin you some rabbits and slaughter some ducks, too, while he's up and at it). It amazes me the way older folks who have grown up doing that stuff and can still rip it out when necessary, even after time away from it. Just like riding a bike, right? [​IMG]

    Welcome to BYC! [​IMG]

    Oh, and wait another week on the chooks, even if they stink (plug your nose and think "roasted chicken"). You'll get more bang for your buck.

    Edited to add: My husband's hometown is Antioch, IL!
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2008
  3. Richard

    Richard Out Of The Brooder

    57
    0
    29
    May 8, 2008
    Antioch IL
    thats amazing your husband being from Antioch its a small world isnt it .And I think your right about waiting another week . I cant wait to watch my Dad try think I will video it [​IMG]
     
  4. dangerouschicken

    dangerouschicken Will Barter For Coffee

    2,407
    14
    213
    May 6, 2007
    Columbia Gorge, OR
    OH YES, and post that video ON THIS BOARD! That would be so cool to see [​IMG]
     
  5. LoneCowboy

    LoneCowboy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 26, 2007
    Longmont, CO
    Yep, 6 weeks is just a feather too early. 7 is perfect. Good luck! Just did mine and they are yummy. Don't miss the stink though. [​IMG]
     
  6. mmajw

    mmajw Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 31, 2008
    Maine
    I keep mine for 7-8 weeks. You should definately go by weight not age however, you will loose some weight from live weight to dressed weight. When mine go they usually weigh between 12-14 pounds live and dressed between 8-10 pounds.

    Good luck and keep them cool the older they get the more likely they are to die from heat and heart attacks.
     
  7. Richard

    Richard Out Of The Brooder

    57
    0
    29
    May 8, 2008
    Antioch IL
    Yea the heat is what worries me the most .It gets so hot and humid here in the midwest I would hate to start losing them.However looking at the 10 day forecast it says there is only 2 days above 80 so I guess I will just keep my fingers crossed
     
  8. LoneCowboy

    LoneCowboy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 26, 2007
    Longmont, CO
    The place I process them at says about 5.5 live weight is good, but at 7 weeks mine were larger than that and I ended up with chickens at an average weight of 4 lbs processed. Still to big for just DH and me. I'll have enough for chicken tacos or something
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by