How Long Will a Meat Bird live?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by Abby Tengu, Mar 6, 2013.

  1. Abby Tengu

    Abby Tengu Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 23, 2012
    I have layers but bought two meat bird chicks because I had a pea chick who needed company. The meat bird chicks were all that were available at the time. I didn't know much about them but I figured I'd have to have the meat birds killed before they collapsed under their own weight. They are now eight months old and seem to be doing okay. I noticed that they are much heavier than the layers and have short wings.
    They also are really friendly. So I keep hoping that they can just stick around without any discomfort.
     
  2. Hummingbird Hollow

    Hummingbird Hollow Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 1, 2011
    Colorado mountains
    I think it partly depends on how you feed them. Most meat birds are feed with the goal of having them put on weight as quickly as possible so that they can be butchered at 8 or 9 weeks. If you've had yours for 8 months, you've obviously passed the "Must butcher by 10 weeks" stage. I've heard of folks who have kept CX birds into their adulthood, but can't speak from experience. I kept three of my Freedom Ranger meat birds from the batch of 35 I raised last summer. The rooster I butchered at around 6 months because he was a bully. One of my hens developed a prolapse, which can be caused by being too fat and heavy and she joined the rooster on the dinner table. My remaining hen is now 10 months old and she is much bigger and heavier than my other egg layers. I plan on butchering her when I have a free day. She eats way too much for the number of eggs she produces, and since I no longer have the rooster and the prospect of some Freedom Ranger chicks, I need the space in my coop for another egg layer.

    That probably didn't answer your question did it...sorry.
     
  3. Abby Tengu

    Abby Tengu Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 23, 2012
    It was a little helpful. Thanks! I didn't expect those meat birds to have such sweet temperaments. Either that or they're just really dumb and too fat to run from me. They stand there and let me pick them up and their voices are different from the layers. Kind of more resonant. I wish I could get my head around killing the chickens I eat because I love chicken meat but I love chickens, too, So I should make sure that they aren't treated badly while alive. In the meantime, the peacock and the meat birds are good friends and spent all their time together except at night when the peacock flies up to a tall tree.
     

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