Leghorn for Dual purpose:

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by AlexCary, Jul 7, 2016.

  1. AlexCary

    AlexCary Just Hatched

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    Jun 28, 2016
    I know Leghorns are layers. The fact is though all chickens are edible.

    IF you keep chickens for mainly just eggs and you want to refresh your flock by hatching your own chicks, wouldn't it make sense to raise the extra cockerels as fryers?

    Murray McMurray sells the frypan special as all cockerels to be processed between 16 and 20 weeks. So for a homestead wouldn't these birds make good sense? Good foraging... lays tons of eggs on less feed and when you hatch out chicks to replenish your hens you hope for some good cockerels for fried chicken. Back at the turn of the 20th century many leghorn cockerels were sold as fryers.

    So question is... I know they won't be big old roasters, but for small homestead folk looking for eggs and a very efficient foraging breed... why not the leghorn as a dual purpose breed?
     
  2. 0wen

    0wen Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 25, 2016
    Southwest Virginia
    The issue really is the reward for the amount of work. It takes the same amount of time to dress out an orpington as it does a leghorn and you actually get enough for a meal from the orpington. The leghorn has good feed conversion, no doubt but plenty of other birds are reliable layers - many RIR, Rocks, etc are almost daily layers but provide a bigger meal when used as a table bird...

    If you only have leghorns and you have to cull some cockerels from your flock then I'd put them to use on the table, not sure I'd specifically select them to use as a dual purpose bird however..
     
  3. AlexCary

    AlexCary Just Hatched

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    I do have some Bielefelder's. They don't lay as well as I would like. I have some commercial egg layer leghorns about 4 weeks old. I think I will keep the leghorns for egg laying and just keep a few Bielefelders to hatch out meat birds. I love the potential of 5 to 6 eggs a week off the leghorns and the low feed need. When I need more egg layers I can always by more cheap leghorns or hatch a cross. I love White Rocks, they lay well. But keeping 12 White Rocks... well they eat a lot (compared to leghorns). I can not really see keeping a bunch of dual purpose birds for egg laying. I'd rather just keep enough dual purpose to hatch out some meaties when I want them and save on feed costs.
     

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