How long til maturity?

RebelsHope

Songster
12 Years
Jul 27, 2007
291
7
141
wisconsin
I wanted to hatch out some of my own chicks from my layers this year. All the hens are heavy breeds: BO, Silver Laced Wayndotte, RIR, NHR, Barred Rock. My roo is a RIR banty X EE. How do I know when the cockerls would be ready to butcher? I talked to the processing plant and they said that in late summer I need to call about a month before hand.
 

silkiechicken

Staff PhD
Premium Feather Member
12 Years
13 Years
Jan 25, 2007
21,494
974
393
Everett WA/Corvallis OR
Since those are not meat birds, I would aim for the 14-16 week old mark. Don't expect anything that looks like supermarket birds though. They will be about half the size.
 

RebelsHope

Songster
12 Years
Jul 27, 2007
291
7
141
wisconsin
Thanks, I was just going to do it so I didn't have a ton of roo running a muck in the barn yard.
 

legacyln

Songster
11 Years
Mar 18, 2008
246
0
129
Jefferson City, MO
I'm in the same situation-- thanks for the responses. Can we expect a lot of trouble in the way of fighting from these boys as they grow? Can they stay in with the pullets? Mine are 6-7 weeks and I see some sparring beginning. I'm not too excited about butchering but I can't find anyone local to give these guys away to!
 

greyfields

Crowing
12 Years
Mar 15, 2007
4,889
27
261
Washington State
Leaving your heavy breed cockrels with pullets never seems to work. By the 14, 16 or 20 week mark they are very much roosters and will spend all their time chasing women and fighting. They don't put on weight well or retain a soft muscle texture if allowed to be this active. Your pullets will also thank you if you separate them.
 

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