Is it worth it to butcher?


10 Years
Feb 15, 2009
Coastal Georgia
I am raising some Dark Cornish this year for meat and plan on butchering them at between 17 and 20 weeks. I also have some roos from the straight runs I got for laying stock. I have 2 Cuckoo Marans, 1 RIR (a surprise roo), and 1 Buff Cochin (the free exotic chick). One of the Marans is crowing so I have to do something. They're between 12 and 13 weeks right now. I've tried Craigslist but no go yet. Are they worth butchering at this age? Would there be any meat on them? I wouldn't gut them but just skin them and take off the breasts, legs and thighs. I don't know if I can do the Cochin. He just doesn't seem like a meat bird.

Any advice is welcome!


11 Years
Nov 12, 2008
Willis TX
I've got the same problem. I swear the last batch I hatched was 90% roos. From experience, I know I have to butcher them just as they start crowing or the meat is nasty. So my plan is to butcher 5 or 6 at once, let them rest in the fridge for a couple of days, and then slow-cook the lot of 'em.

There's not a lot to most roosters except feathers, feet, and crow!

Kathy, Bellville TX,


In the Brooder
10 Years
May 9, 2009
Bryan, TX
Some meat for your investment is better than No Meat if you get rid of them on CL. I would go ahead and clean them up and have dinner in a few days.


In the Brooder
12 Years
Aug 29, 2007
Springdale, AR
What do you mean by nasty? Most of my young roos have started crowing around 8-10 weeks, and they aren't really worth butchering until around week 15+, which is when I hear a lot of people butcher standard breeds. None of mine certainly weren't what I would call nasty. I processed some once and I didn't let them age (rest) or brine them and they were a bit chewy/tough, but that's about it...the flavor was really good. Is there something I'm missing about this crowing thing?


Deluxe Dozens
11 Years
Mar 29, 2008
Riverside/Norco, CA
I just butchered a fifteen month old CBM roo today. He didnt have much breast meat on him either, for what it's worth... You could say i was "struck by Lightning" today, and I struck back!
He is boiling on the stove right now with some onions, carrots, celery, herbs, and bullion. Later I will add a few potatoes or barley. Yum!

It was my first time, and next time I will have a sharper knife and start to boil the water sooner. Otherwise, I did good.

Sunny Side Up

Count your many blessings...
11 Years
Mar 12, 2008
Loxahatchee, Florida
The majority of the birds I've had for dinner guests have been mixed-breed and standard-breed cockerels. I've even butchered extra bantam roosters. I keep them confined to a tractor and feed them regular chick starter and butcher them around 18-22 weeks. When I remember to weigh them they've been around 2.5 - 4 pounds. They've never been tough or nasty-tasting. I let them rest for a couple of days in the refrigerator and usually slow-simmer them on the stove until the meat is falling off the bones. Then I make the meat go further by using it in soups, stews, & chilis.

I've been such a cheapskate that I haven't wanted to buy them any special kind of feed, but perhaps it would be worth it to make them meatier. What else could I feed them to get more meat on their bones?

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