How do you fatten Roos?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by HappyVol, Nov 20, 2007.

  1. HappyVol

    HappyVol Out Of The Brooder

    18
    0
    22
    Oct 28, 2007
    OK I had 4 roos and 3 had to go. DH took them out and then called me over. They were mostly feathers and bone. I had them in the coop for a least 4 weeks thinking that they would fatten up and have lots of meat. We were very dissapointed.

    They had plenty of water, food daily, the coop is clean. So what did we do wrong?

    Thanks
    Nancy aka Rockytopsis elsewhere.
     
  2. MissPrissy

    MissPrissy Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

    24,442
    47
    371
    May 7, 2007
    Forks, Virginia
    What breed were they and how old when you processed them?

    I ask because many people assume that all chickens dress out like the plumb birds at the grocery store but don't realize that not all chickens are meat birds. The chickens at the grocery are bred to be at their best in 4 - 8 weeks. They eat like hogs and grow right before your eyes. Dual purpose birds are generally good egg layers and are of a good size to process with a respectable amount of meat on them but not at all like meat birds. Some chickens will always be scrawny. Smaller breeds of chickens even moreso.

    When I culled my extra cockerals they were 19 weeks old, heavy breed, weighing in at 6 - 7 lbs each. We got good meat off of them but still not like a bird raised for meat.
     
  3. HappyVol

    HappyVol Out Of The Brooder

    18
    0
    22
    Oct 28, 2007
    The roos were hatched out at the end of May this year, so they were older than your recomendation. They are a cross of Buff Cochin (dad) and Weyentotte (mom).
     
  4. MissPrissy

    MissPrissy Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

    24,442
    47
    371
    May 7, 2007
    Forks, Virginia
    Cochin's tend to look much bigger than they are due to the fluffy feathering. That may be one reason your birds didn't have much meat on their bones.

    What do you feed them?
     
  5. FutureChickenMan

    FutureChickenMan Chillin' With My Peeps

    848
    3
    151
    Oct 29, 2007
    in answer to the question, the "method" to make roos bulkier meat birds is to caponize them (remove their testicles). It's a surgical procedure not many people do any more since the cornish crosses came about.
     
  6. adoptedbyachicken

    adoptedbyachicken Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

    They may have had worms or mites/lice or the other factor is that they ran with hens and had compitition in other roos. I know it's really hard but roos for the table need to be penned from the get go and not exposed to the concerns of caring for or competing for hens. I'm the worst one to talk on this but I know from trying it with a batch of Bared Rocks it really helps. It was an attempt at sexing by markings really, but the roos that I had out from the start did way better dispite the 3 hen mistakes that I took out at about 5 weeks than the 5 roo mistakes that I made did in the hen pen that I never moved over to the roo pen (due to crowding issue, the roo pen was smaller)

    Caponizing is a better option for sure if meat is all you consider. Not sure it's worth the time and effort but have not tried it.
     
  7. HappyVol

    HappyVol Out Of The Brooder

    18
    0
    22
    Oct 28, 2007
    I told DH that they may need worming, but the hens are really heafty. We will worm them anyway just to be sure.

    On worming is there a recomended time to do this like every 3 months?

    I really think from reading here that they were typical roos though.
     
  8. MissPrissy

    MissPrissy Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

    24,442
    47
    371
    May 7, 2007
    Forks, Virginia
    Unless you see and seriously suspect they have worms it is ill advised to use a wormer on them. You could try the method speckledhen uses with chopped pumpkin seeds and buttermilk for worming instead of a chemical wormer which will have about a 2 week withdrawal period inwhich you can't eat the bird or the eggs.

    If you go out at dark while they are on the roost you can catch one, flip it's rear end up and using a flashlight look for mites and lice around the vent area. If you see anything moving on the skin dust them all down with sevin dust and/or food grade DE. You'll need to clean out all of the bedding and dust the entire hen house and run because they will reinfest.

    If the roosters are very active and have alot of space to run around in they will not fatten up as quickly as a confined bird. They exercise the weight off.
     
  9. HappyVol

    HappyVol Out Of The Brooder

    18
    0
    22
    Oct 28, 2007
    The buttermilk is a new one for me on worming, I must be worm free cause I love the stuff LOL. Really though I have not read that before. Do you combine the 2 items? I have read about pumpkin seeds as a natural wormer for goats. I don't like using chemicals unless I have to.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by