I feel weird posting on this section...

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by StarLover21, Feb 13, 2012.

  1. StarLover21

    StarLover21 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 11, 2011
    ...as I'm a vegetarian, and would never dream of eating one of my beloved pets, or any chicken, for that matter. But I just had a question, and it seemed right to post it here.
    I was just wondering about the packing peanuts (a.k.a baby male chicks) the hatchery sends. Does everybody just eat them? Do people ever have sucess selling them? It seems like an awful thing that the hatchery's do.
    Just wondering.
  2. Deedrahsue

    Deedrahsue Out Of The Brooder

    Jul 24, 2011
    Fresno, TX
    That is a disturbing question and let me tell you that when I received 12 roosters I was not thrilled, my chickens weren't thrilled either, they were bullying my chickens and such. No I do not eat my packing peanuts and to be honest with you I am considering getting my chickens this year from my local feed store.

    I do eat meat but struggle with eating the babies I raised. I took and sold the roosters still very young to a local feed store and he said people who buy them use them as meat. But on the flip side as I left the feed store (I am Hispanic) I had a very non English speaking gentleman ask me if I had anymore roosters for sale. Rooster fighting is also big too, so I wonder about that, or that is what my husband wondered. Then we went to eat at a local restaurant and this gentleman had a rooster on his hat and we asked and he was from Louisiana and he said yes they still do rooster fighting and loved it.

    Seems like those poor little roosters don't get a break. My neighbor keeps them lol he has like 5 roosters and 4 chicken. Its supposed to be 1 rooster for like 10-13 chicken which seems like even less of the need for roosters. I personally do not appreciate the cock a doodle do all day and early morning, so that's my take, I am not sure anyone knows what to do with those packing peanuts but selling them to feed stores is an option.
  3. draye

    draye Overrun With Chickens

    Nov 30, 2010

    Sorry, I couldn't resist...........
    but they sure were good, in dumplings and cassaroles.
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2012
  4. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    Hatcheries have left over birds. They don't know exactly how many will hatch or what the actual split on male-female will be, so they hatch extra. Extra chicks exist and have to be dealt with. It is mostly males but some of the extras are females.

    Some hatcheries add extra chicks to the shipment to help keep them warm during shipping. That gives less stress on the shipped chicks, but those extras, which are usually male, can be inconvenient to deal with, especially of you did not expect them. If you don't want the extra ones, you need to contact the hatchery and see what their policy is. Some hatcheries will agree to not ship packing peanuts if you ask. Some hatcheries, not all. You need to contact that specific hatchery to find out what that specific hatchery does. It's extremely rare, but I did once receive a packing peanut that was female.

    You don't always know which ones are male or female when you get them. Vent sexing is not 100% accurate. Some pullets you order could be roosters. That's not a sinister plot to take over the world by slipping a few roosters in the shipment instead of pullets. That's because vent sexing is not 100% accurate. Even if the packing peanuts are a totally different color, you don't always know which are male and female. If they are the same color, it can be really hard. Some hatcheries will mark the packing peanuts if you ask them to. They put some food coloring on the down. But you have to ask and not all necessarily mark them. You have to ask that specific hatchery to find out.

    I hatch and raise my own and one of my personal goals is to raise chickmens to eat. So, yes, I eat the roosters. I eat extra hens too. But not everyone does. From a poll Nifty did a while back, I'm in the distinct minority on this forum. Only somewhere around 7% to 8% of the forum members raise chickens for meat according to that poll. You might take some comfort in that.

    You can maybe sell the packing peanuts or just give hem away on Craigslist. Maybe talk to the people at the feed store to see if they know anyone that might want them. Maybe put a notice up on a bulletin board at the feed store. Some people have family or friends that live on farms and will take them. Once you give them away, you have lost control over them and their fate.

    I don't consider it an awful thing for the hatcheries to ship the packing peanuts with the regular order. They serve a purpose in helping keep the other chicks alive during shipping. But for a lot of people that don't want them, it is an inconvenience to get rid of them. It can be quite difficult.
    1 person likes this.
  5. HEChicken

    HEChicken Overrun With Chickens

    Aug 12, 2009
    BuCo, KS
    My Coop
    I totally agree with everything Ridgerunner said.

    To put it in perspective, I am also a vegetarian - except for eating my own chickens. I decided a long time ago that I cannot change the way commercially produced meat animals are treated, but I can choose not to participate in their often cruel treatment by not eating that meat. However if my objection to eating meat is to not participate in the raising of animals under inhumane conditions, then that objection is null if I have raised the animals myself and know that not only were they raised humanely, but they didn't suffer at the moment of their death either.

    With that in mind, I thoroughly researched methods of processing until I felt confident I could do it without causing the chicken undue stress or suffering. My first group of chickens consisted of a straight run batch of 8 procured locally. In true straight run fashion, I wound up with four roos. And, although I had raised them from day-olds, when the day came that the first started to crow, I told DH it was time and together we gathered them up and processed them. Those were the first chicken dinners I had had for some years.

    Since then I've had about a dozen more chicken dinners. I still refuse to buy commercially raised chicken meat at the store. And I decline to eat chicken dishes in restaurants or even when eating at the homes of friends and relatives. They all understand and respect my feelings.

    The reality is that statistically, 50% of chicks hatched will be male. Yet only 1 male is needed for every 10 females. And, with so many people living in cities that do not allow roosters (and therefore their flocks consist only of hens), the real number of roosters needed in the world is probably more like 1 for every 20-30 hens. That is a LOT of unneeded roos. My feeling is that allowing them to live a happy life where they can free-range, have access to as much feed as they can eat, clean water, feel the sun on their backs, and be in a flock of their own kind, even if only for 16-18 weeks, before eating them, is probably about the best we can do for them.
  6. deerman

    deerman Rest in Peace 1949-2012

    Aug 24, 2008
    Southern Ohio
    packing peanut are cheater than heating pads....but they put them there to keep your chicks warm.

    no body would buy those males ...for fighting , fighting game rooster breeds fight to the death , none of those hatchery breed would even try to fight long, plus those guy don't use rooster to train theirs.

    so you can sell them without fear of them being use in illegal rooster fights...odds they will be ate real high

    its is now federal ...illegal to fight chicken in all 50 states...even Louisiana
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2012
  7. Darin115

    Darin115 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 28, 2008
    Asheboro, NC
    Put the extras on craigslist and get ready. I had about 10 extra roosters a year or so ago and I placed them on craigslist. In less than 30 minutes I had a ton of calls wanting the roosters. I sold them for $2 a chick. I have gave some away as well.

    I just make no promises on male or female.

  8. StarLover21

    StarLover21 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 11, 2011
    Thanks guys! I guess I"ll just try to order from a hatrchery I know doesn't include packing peanuts.
  9. NoZolbitty

    NoZolbitty Chillin' With My Peeps

    It occured to me, these "packing peanuts" could be a problem for those folks who live in suburbia, with so many cities having a ban on roosters
  10. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

    Mar 12, 2008
    Loxahatchee, Florida
    Most hatcheries won't include extras if you let them know that you don't want them, otherwise they may feel they're doing you a favor to give you extra birds for your table. You shouldn't need them if you have place a minimum order, usually 25 chicks. HEchicken is correct, there are job positions for less than 10% of all roosters hatched. There are worse things that could happen to a chicken than to live a pleasant (though brief) life, be sent "across the road" quickly, gently, and humanely, and then provide nourishment for a grateful human family.

    I am always glad to receive other people's unwanted packing peanuts.

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