1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

Good Meat Flock

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by CindyJeann, Oct 9, 2011.

  1. CindyJeann

    CindyJeann Chillin' With My Peeps

    224
    5
    108
    Mar 29, 2011
    Miller County Arkansas
    I’m considering building a meat flock next spring. I want large broody mommas for hens to sit eggs each year and hatch our chicks. I was thinking of Orpingtons and Brahmas. Does anyone have recommendations for roosters for a good large meat cross?
     
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

    19,945
    3,103
    476
    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    You can get a whole lot of different opinions on this one. There are many correct answers from how I understand your question. A whole lot if it is just personal choice.

    If you like a lot of breast meat, I suggest a Cornish rooster. Not the Cornish X, Cornish Cross, or Cornish Rock. Those are the meaties and not sustainable without a lot of hard work and some luck. I mean pure Cornish.

    Otherwise any dual purpose breed will do. That's why they are called dual purpose, eggs and meat. If you pluck instead of skin them, I'd suggest a lighter colored rooster, such as a Delaware maybe, to give lighter colored chicks. The only reason for this is that you get a prettier carcass. When you pluck, those dark pin feathers really stick out so you have to work harder to get a pretty carcass.

    Brahmas mature slowly. If you are feeding them instead of letting them feed themselves by free ranging, they may not be the best choice for you. You'll get higher feed costs per pound of meat. But if they feed themselves, it may not be an issue for you.

    Good luck!
     
  3. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

    21,681
    2,617
    466
    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    Buckeyes and Langshans are meaty and LaFleche have lots of breast meat.
    You can't go wrong with BOs for broodiness.
     
  4. ChickenMack

    ChickenMack Chillin' With My Peeps

    137
    1
    91
    Oct 7, 2011
    Take a look at the production Rhode Island Reds- this is what most RIR's are now from the hatcheries, or Leghorns. They don't mature as quickly as the crosses or rangers but they are nice when dressed, with dark flavorful meat. What I have found though with production reds, is they are quite agressive to each other and their environment (their yard was totally destroyed, not a blade of grass to be found) and none of mine went broody so I had to replace them with hatchery hens. They are really good brown egg layers as well. I have a friend who raises Buckeyes for meat and eggs. Hers will go broody and hatch eggs, but she has had no luck with them mothering so she loses the chicks- they are free range so she has a hard time intervening. But she swears by their good quality meat and high egg production. I have a RIR rooster who, as I posted on here, attacked my daughter so he will be processed within the next day or two, but he has been a good rooster for protection and fertilizing eggs and now I am sure he will make a good stew.

    Now, I have never had experience personally with staright meat birds- cornish, cornish cross, etc, but from what I have been told by those who have, if you want a grocry store like bird, big breasts and white meat, these are your birds. But they are not layers and because of their genetic modifications, it is not recommended that the backyard breeder breeds them but buy them from the hatcheries.
     
  5. CindyJeann

    CindyJeann Chillin' With My Peeps

    224
    5
    108
    Mar 29, 2011
    Miller County Arkansas
    If I cross Buff Brahma or Buff Orpington with Dark Cornish will I get a sex link? Good meat birds, some fast growing some slow growing? I don't care about pin feathers I intend to skin. I want some fast growers for frying but I do love to pressure cook a big bird for Chicken and Dressing or Rice ect.
     
  6. jgervais

    jgervais Chillin' With My Peeps

    243
    4
    103
    Apr 18, 2011
    Jackson, MI
    I got some Dorkings for just this purpose. Ill have to update you later on how it all turns out - they are supposedly excellent mothers and tend to be quite broody. I received 18 chicks from Sandhill Preservation July 14th and checking out my roosters today look like there are a few ready as small roasters. In another month they will definitely be a good size. They seem to be exceptional foragers and roam the yard finding anything and everything. Dorkings are dated from way back to Julius Cesar times and are promised to be a gourmet bird. Get back to me in a month and ill let you know how tasty they are [​IMG]
     
  7. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

    19,945
    3,103
    476
    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    Quote:No, they will not be sex links. For that you either need a barred hen, like Barred Rock, Dominique, or Cuckoo Maran with many different roosters or a hen with Silver, such as Delaware, Light Brahma, or many others with a rooster that has gold. This thread explains it pretty well, especailly the first post.

    Tadkerson’s Sex Link Thread
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=261208

    Those should be good meat birds though.
     
  8. Noymira

    Noymira Chillin' With My Peeps

    979
    1
    121
    Mar 9, 2011
    Chittenden County, VT
    I've got two cockerels I'll be using to breed a DP flock, a Barred Rock and a Black Copper Marans, both are pretty big boys, but I really like my Black Copper Marans (he's the bird in my avatar).

    I also have 5 Black Copper Marans hens, and they are all pretty good sized hens. I think they will work well for breeding some DP birds next year. I also have a mixed flock of hatchery layers, there are two New Hampshire hens who are reaching a pretty good size now and I think would also be good for meat.
     
  9. Jenlyn9483

    Jenlyn9483 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 27, 2008
    Jacksonville, FL
    I'm using Dark Cornish Roo over Deleware, Sexlink, wyndott, and new hamphshire hens. I would like to add a rock, barnvelder and maran hens.
     
  10. doubleatraining

    doubleatraining Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,163
    15
    141
    Jul 25, 2011
    Franklinton, NC
    I have finally found some standard sized Cornish to cross with my DP flock!!

    The plan: Keep a trio of Cornish for pure chicks.

    BCM rooster over Cornish Hens

    Cornish Rooster over BCM, other marans, and BA hens.

    I can't wait for spring!
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by