Help me choose: Narraganset or Bourbon?

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by Country Parson, Dec 28, 2010.

  1. Country Parson

    Country Parson Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The Narragansett and the Bourbon Red seem to be roughly the same size. I plan on only getting one breed. Can you help me choose between them? My goals are:

    1. Meat. Looking for a decent breast with some white meat (I understand I won't get what a Broad-breasted produces).

    2. Reproducability. Lay well, willing to go broody, etc.

    3. Friendliness. Not the all-determining factor, but it would help! :eek:)

    4. Beauty. From the picture the Narragansett seems stunningly beautiful. But what are your thoughts?
     
  2. Steve_of_sandspoultry

    Steve_of_sandspoultry Overrun With Chickens

    We raise BR's but not Narri's. The BR's are good layers, good sitters and mothers. They are very curious and will follow us around, sometimes it's hard to get things when they are near. I have had them try to run off with nails and get underfoot. There have been a couple taste tests and the BR has rated high in all of them.

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    Steve
     
  3. Country Parson

    Country Parson Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Bellefontaine, OH
    Steve, your birds look beautiful! Thanks for the gorgeous pics! [​IMG]
     
  4. jasonm11

    jasonm11 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Beautiful birds!
     
  5. X2Farm

    X2Farm Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 6, 2010
    Homer, GA
    Quote:[​IMG] point proven by the hen looking directly into the camera there [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Steve, yall have some beautiful BR's!!! I'll probably be contacting yall before too long about em [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  6. HallFamilyFarm

    HallFamilyFarm PA ETL#195

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    Collins, Arkansas
    Steve, your BR are some of the prettiest I have ever seen. Hope I don't compete with you anytime soon.

    We traded our Royal Palms at Shawnee and are getting Narragansett in the spring. Hope this info helps you.

    Narragansett: Standard mature weights: 33 lbs. for toms and 18 lbs. for hens. Description at http://www.feathersite.com/Poultry/Turkeys/BRKJiylda.html

    Bourbon
    Red: Standard mature weights: 33 lbs. for toms and 18 lbs. for hens. Description at http://www.feathersite.com/Poultry/Turkeys/BRKBourbonRed.html

    Seems
    the weights are the same. A friend has some Bourbon Reds and their temperment seems to be very gentle. The Narragansett is said to be one of the gentlest varieties of Turkeys. Your choice may come down to color choice. Below is descriptions of both that may help you decide.

    Here is a Narragansett that was shown at Shawnee, the APA National Meet. Best of Variety, Narragansett!

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    Narragansett Description

    from http://www.porterturkeys.com/narragansett.htm

    The
    Narragansett turkey is named for Narragansett Bay in Rhode Island, where the variety was developed. It descends from a cross between native Eastern Wild turkeys and the domestic turkeys (probably Norfolk Blacks) brought to America by English and European colonists beginning in the 1600Â’s. Improved and standardized for production qualities, the Narragansett became the foundation of the turkey industry in New England. Though it was valued across the country, it was especially important in Rhode Island and Connecticut. The American Poultry Association recognized the Narragansett in 1874.

    The Narragansett color pattern contains black, gray, tan, and white. Its pattern is similar to that of the Bronze, with steel gray or dull black replacing the coppery bronze. This pattern results from a genetic mutation which removes the bronzing coloration.

    The gene is also sexlinked. Genotype of (b+b+ngng) for toms and (b+b+ng- for hens)The poult color/pattern is nearly indistinguishable from the bronze. The NarragansettÂ’s beak is horn colored, its head is red to bluish white and its beard is black. The shanks and feet are salmon colored. Since, however, the Narragansett has not been selected for production attributes, including weight gain, for years, many birds may be smaller than the standard. Careful selection for good health, ability to mate naturally, and production attributes will return this variety to its former stature.

    Standard mature weights: 33 lbs. for toms and 18 lbs. for hens.

    Bourbon Red Turkeys Description

    from http://www.porterturkeys.com/bourbonred.htm


    This
    popular turkey is believed to have been developed from the Tuscarora Red turkey. The Tuscarora, or Tuscawara, was developed in Pennsylvania by selecting Buffs for darker color. The Tuscarora Reds were taken to Kentucky where their development was continued until the deep reddish-brown color of the Bourbon Red was finalized. At one time, they were called Bourbon Butternuts and/or Kentucky Reds, but the name or the variety did not become popular until around the turn of the century when they were promoted as the turkey from Bourbon County, Kentucky then they became known as the Bourbon Red and were excepted into the APA Standard in 1909, and Mr. Barbee of Bourbon County, Kentucky had been given credit for its origin.

    The standard calls for a dark red plumage with white in the flight and tail feathers. The main tail feathers are crossed by a soft red bar near the end. Body feathers on the toms may be edged in black, though the less black, the better. The neck and breast feathers are mahogany, with a narrow edging of white present on the breast feathers of the females. The under feathers are light red shading to light salmon. The beak is a light horn color at the tip and dark at base and the eyes are dark brown. The beard is black and the shanks and toes are reddish pink. Their weights are 33 pounds for mature toms and 18 for mature hens. It has been a popular variety for many years, and today it remains the most numerous of Historical turkeys.

    Their genotype is (b+b+rr) Bronze based and homozygous for recessive red.​
     
  7. ColbyNTX

    ColbyNTX Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 2, 2009
    Woods, TX
    I like the Narra's! They are the oldest heritage breed in the US and were almost extinct just a few years ago. That's why I choose them(to breed) and their look but it turns out that they are the sweetest of all the breeds I have. My big tom loves to be petted and doesn't peck my hand hard like the other toms when eating treats.
     
  8. arabianequine

    arabianequine Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 4, 2010
    [​IMG]

    The tom never came at me in any way. The hens were more apt to attack if they felt threatened. The hens never came at me either on their own just because or from behind. They all would go away from me if anything.
     
  9. kuntrygirl

    kuntrygirl Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

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    I vote for Bourbons. Mine aren't as beautiful as Steve's though. [​IMG]

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  10. HallFamilyFarm

    HallFamilyFarm PA ETL#195

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    Jan 25, 2010
    Collins, Arkansas
    I don't want Steve or kuntrygirl showing against me anytime soon! You both have nice looking BR!
     

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