Indian game(cornish) cross

Cody brown

In the Brooder
Nov 18, 2020
34
32
41
Hi everyone, ive heard that if you cross a indian game (cornish) chicken with egg laying breeds it gives you a good neat bird. Can anyone explain this. I dont know much about this. Does this cross create meat birds or dual purpose birds?
 

Cody brown

In the Brooder
Nov 18, 2020
34
32
41
So if i was to breed a dorking and indian gane (cornish) i would get a good size bird. But no were close to a modern cornish cross?
 

Egghead_Jr

Crowing
11 Years
Oct 16, 2010
7,534
3,673
476
NEK, VT
Indian Game X New Hampshire would be good. Dorking should be a good choice but there is a person on here that breeds them and states the fast maturing they are suppose to be he's not seen. Nobody disputes the faster maturing of New Hampshire.

The cross would not be as good with an egg layer breed. Dual purpose bird crossed to Indian Game would provide double thick breast on the offspring making for good meat birds.
 

Ridgerunner

Crossing the Road
12 Years
Feb 2, 2009
28,044
22,696
907
Southeast Louisiana
Hi everyone, ive heard that if you cross a indian game (cornish) chicken with egg laying breeds it gives you a good neat bird. Can anyone explain this. I dont know much about this. Does this cross create meat birds or dual purpose birds?

Hi, Cody, haven't noticed you on here for a few days.

When you breed two chickens, the offspring inherits traits from both parents. With certain crosses you can get a pretty good idea of what you will get, others not so much. Another problem is that all chickens of a certain breed are not identical so they do not contribute the same thing. A lot of that depends on what specific traits the person selecting which chickens get to breed decide to emphasize. For example, the Indian Game (Cornish) tend to have large breasts and lay poorly. If the breeder wants a bird that lays better but doesn't care about breast size in a few generations they can make a Cornish that lays better but may not have that much of a breast. The quality of your beginning stock makes a big difference.

When you cross two chickens with different traits the offspring tends to have traits in between the parents. If you cross a Cornish from a flock that does not lay that well with a bird from a flock that does lay really well most of the pullets will lay somewhere in between the two parent flocks. I'm trying to be careful how I phrase this because not all hens in a flock lay the flock average. Some lay better than average, some worse. Some may have better breasts than others. Again, the quality of your breeding stock.

So if you want more breast meat and you cross a decent Cornish with a decent egg-laying breed you should get a bird that provides more breast meat than the egg-laying breed and lay better than the Cornish. If more breast meat isn't your thing, maybe Cornish aren't your best option. Cornish generally contribute decent overall size.

Most egg laying breeds tend to be small, like the Leghorn. They use more of what they eat to form eggs instead of having to maintain a big body so they are typically more efficient to feed. The dual purpose are not as efficient as meat birds in converting feed to meat and are not as efficient at converting feed to eggs as the egg layers. If you cross a dual purpose instead of an egg layer like Leghorn you get a larger bird, but that brings up another point.

What traits do you consider a good meat bird should have? Is it proportion of light meat to dark, pure size, conversion rate of feed to meat, do you want them to forage? One of my favorites is early maturity. How do you want to cook them, that can help determine at what age you want to butcher them. Some people on here are obsessed with size, size, size. While size is important to practically all of us to a degree, some of us hold other traits more important.

To me the simplest answer as to why the person making that suggested cross thinks it makes a good meat bird is that they like breast meat. Many people do. Not my wife's family so much but many other people.

My main suggestion is that if you wan to try it go for it. You may find you really like the cross. If you don't like them eat them and try something else.

Good luck!
 

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