Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by Frosty, Nov 21, 2010.

  1. Frosty

    Frosty Songster

    Mar 30, 2008
    We did the deed yesterday, and BYC member LivinNewDreamInND was here... she has never done this before and it was a cold day for her to learn but she did GREAT! I have had people out for this before who didn't pull their weight (and they were never invited again), but she pitched right in and was doing parts of everything except the actual head removal. I really think she could handle that too, but didn't ask her to try because of the weather. And when you take into consideration that she wasn't raised doing what she has taken on since she moved to ND, raising poultry, planting a garden, canning... I am just so proud of her accomplishments! I know that I have nothing to do with her sucess, but it makes me smile!

    I was planning to do the feed bag method that was being discussed yesterday, but the feed bag choices were paper, paper with a woven (fiberglass?) lining, or the plastic woven looking bags that Purina has gone to. None of the above seemed like a good choice when it's cold. So I grabbed an old pillow case, hung the largest bird by the feet, made sure the pillow case would fit over him, then cut the corner off of that. It worked, but was getting stiff towards the end there.

    I had 11 turkeys (BBW) and we did 7 of them. I *think* the remaining turkeys are hens (BB turkeys have managed to fool me before). I plan to try crossing them with a White Holland tom and see if I can start raising my own to have turkeys bigger than typical heritage yet still be able to self breed. Most of the folks who get turkeys from me want the bigger breast, I may end up getting some toms from the first year and breeding back to the BB hens. I guess take it one year at a time and see what we get?

    I am thrilled with how yesterday went and want to wish everybody a very Happy Thanksgiving!

  2. HorseFeatherz NV

    HorseFeatherz NV Eggink Chickens

    WOW - 7 - what a day. [​IMG]

    Happy Thanksgiving
  3. ShadyHoller

    ShadyHoller Chirping

    Sep 12, 2010
    Willamette Valley
    We did 3 BRs on Saturday, and we tried the feed bag method in combination with my normal chopping block approach. It went smoothly, and the feed bag helped a lot with constraining the flapping. I think it was Steve who suggested the feed bag: thank you! That's a helpful addition to our processing technique.

    Of the 3 birds: we are cooking a tom on Thursday, skinning, quartering, bringing and smoking a hen (just to have smoked turkey available in the fridge and freezer) and freezing a tom to give to my sister.

    We still have three hens and two toms. We're not sure yet how many we'll carry through the winter, but it probably won't be all five.

    This is our first year raising turkeys, and it has been a success so far. We've had zero percent mortality (fingers crossed, it's always too early to let your guard down) and our seven month birds are healthy, active (the ones that are still alive, at least!) and heavy! Looking forward to Thursday.
  4. longranger

    longranger Songster

    Apr 23, 2009
    laguna hills CA
    I did 9 toms saturday. I am still tired.[​IMG]
  5. Lagerdogger

    Lagerdogger Songster

    Jun 30, 2010
    Aitkin, MN
    We did 12 on Sunday. We used the plastic feed bags. Despite the cold, they worked very well. One of the hens wsa extremely thin and had some fatty tumors inside. She was of dubious health for quite a while. I sold her to my mother-in-law. Not really [​IMG]. The Narragansetts were a little thin, but the Bourbon Reds and St Bronzes were great!

  6. longranger

    longranger Songster

    Apr 23, 2009
    laguna hills CA
    It is easier doing them in batches isn't it. One clean up and all. My toms were pretty uniform in size. Smallest was 12 pounds. The rest were from 15 to 18 pounds. About half auburns, a couple of bronze and 2 MW.

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