How old should the roos be before slaughtering?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by Godiva, May 18, 2007.

  1. Godiva

    Godiva Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 17, 2007
    I have a number of Buff Orpingtons and Speckled Sussex roos that are going under the knife in the next while. HOw do you know when they are the right size? I have never butchered chickens before and am feeling my way around the whole deal? THey are 9 weeks old now but they don't seem big enough yet.... what happens if they are too young? Just less meat? (I only have 5 hens in that lot and there are 12 roos! I think...)
  2. SkeeredChicken

    SkeeredChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 27, 2007
    Orlando, Florida
    I'm not an expert, by no means. But I heard that for meat type birds, it should be anywhere from 8-10 weeks of age. Don't quote me on that, but please, correct me if I'm wrong [​IMG]
  3. BirdBrain

    BirdBrain Prefers Frozen Tail Feathers

    May 7, 2007
    You could always butcher one and see if it had enough meat and then make your decision based on that bird. Unless they are FAST growers 9-10 weeks is probably too young. This is going to sound terrible, but you can always pick your birds up by their legs and then lay them in your lap on their back and imagine them on the plate. Say to yourself...."Self, do they look big enough?" If they do, go for it. [​IMG]
  4. pueawjapygrta

    pueawjapygrta Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 28, 2007
    i'd guess anywhere from 18-22 weeks (or when they get too annoying)
  5. greyfields

    greyfields Overrun With Chickens

    Mar 15, 2007
    Washington State
    If you don't have them on broiler / fryer ration already, they'll probably not get large enough for quite awhile. I'd give them 30 days on a 20% protien ration then cut your losses. They'll just get tought and stringy after too much longer.

    I like tough and stringy personally.... but it doesn't sell well.
  6. Win

    Win Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 29, 2007
    Waterloo, SC

    I just butchered 5 of my black-sex links at 8.5 weeks.

    (See here for a post about that experience:

    birds were not as big as I thought they would be. They were about the size of those little rotisserie chickens I see in grocery store delis. They did not have as developed a breast as a store-type bird.

    They were however, delicious! I am giving them a few more weeks and then butcher another 5 birds at around 11- 12 weeks.
  7. Barnyard Dawg

    Barnyard Dawg Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 7, 2007
    Northern California
    We usually wait until they start crowing then we cull them which is around 5-6 months..
  8. Juliechickens

    Juliechickens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 7, 2007
    Memphis, TN
  9. Godiva

    Godiva Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 17, 2007
    Thanks for the tips folk! I think I am going to wait a while longer as I think they have quite a bit of filling out to do. In the meantime if someone decides to turn mean they may make it into the pot a whole lot earlier! When do you start your birds on broiler rations? I was just going by what it said on the bag of starter... I have mixed hens and roos. Is that a problem? When do I start layer feed for the pullets?
    Last edited: May 21, 2007
  10. lively Bee's

    lively Bee's Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 6, 2007
    My red stars roos I did 6 at 12 weeks 6 at 14 and the next 6 at 16 weeks. We kinda did like Birdbrains post we picked them up and picked out the heavy birds some were a lot smaller then others. 12 weeks red stars had a fair amout of meat but the extra 2 weeks made it worth it at age 14 weeks I will let you know on the 16 weeks that week is this week.

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