Looking for Heritage Poults in Tx

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by MikeOhlh, Jan 24, 2013.

  1. MikeOhlh

    MikeOhlh Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 13, 2012
    Shiner, Texas
    My Coop
    I am in Shiner Texas, and would like to find around 8-10 preferably Bourbon Red turkey poults. I might be swayed by other breed options, if they are not broad breasted. I would like them to be a larger breed, but something that can breed naturally, and speand lots of quality time outside on pasture. I was too late to put my order in with the local feed store, and they ordered BBB's. I did agree to take a few of them, but would really like to have Bourbon Reds. I can order from Ideal, but the soonest I will get them is about April 17th - 19th. Since they will be pastured, I would like them to have a little more time to get to the size customer's are more agreeable to.
     
  2. frank53061

    frank53061 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sorry I cant help there seems to be a shortage of Turkeys I have a lady that is having to drive 4 to 5 hours from southern Arkansas to me in the N/W corner of Arkansas because she cant find any adult birds for sale any closer.
    I have only seen twice on Craig's list in my area turkeys for sale and its been like one or two here and there.
    I have Red Bourbons just waiting for the eggs to start rolling out.

    Best of Luck In finding what you are looking for.
     
  3. Celie

    Celie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Tickfaw, Louisiana
    What part of Texas is Shiner in? What customers are you talking about? Are you raising them to process for Thanksgiving for customers to buy or ton get young poults to sell later? [​IMG]
     
  4. MikeOhlh

    MikeOhlh Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 13, 2012
    Shiner, Texas
    My Coop
    Shiner is about 50 miles south of Austin. I need them to raise for processing at the end of October or so, as part of our CSA meat shares. I have Red Wattle hogs which will be ready for the meat shares in August, and am busy in the 'market garden' for the produce shares, but really need the turkeys before the Ideal folks can get them to me. April 17th to Nov 17th is kinda pushing limits to get a good 7 months on pasture. (minus the first few weeks of course) I think the end of October is a more realistic processing date; which will put them at 6 months and a week or so old. They will most likely be a tad on the small side from what I have heard even with good feed, and lots of grasshoppers, lol. I am starting small, and will only have 5 or 6 shares for this year, but hope to have a few 'left over' turkeys to keep as breeders (with any luck). If the broad breasted bronzes can survive, I will have those for people that want the larger birds as well. I just have heard bad stories about survival odds on them.

    Maybe I am wrong in my thinking, and I am open to your advice; but I thought, if I get them a month sooner, they will have a little more time on pasture, giving a little more flavor, and a little more size. I would be embarrased to give people their wonderful holiday bird if it only weighs in at 10 or 12 pounds... lol (maybe exagerating a little)
    Thanks
     
  5. Arielle

    Arielle Chicken Obsessed

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    Massachusetts, USA
    MIke, try reading thru the TUrkeys for 2013 thread-- might have some good i nfo for you there.
     
  6. Celie

    Celie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 23, 2012
    Tickfaw, Louisiana
    I live a bit North of New Orleans and I have White Holland Heritage turkey poults now. They are larger than BR, Narrag, and slates and dress out nicer, because they are white, no dark pin feathers, but Heritage turkeys take about 8 to 9 months to build a large frame before they start putting on the weight, so if I were you, I would raise the BBW or BBB this year and order your poults around April for next year. Heritage turkeys taste better than BB, but do not have as much breast meat. Home grown BB turkeys taste better than Commercially fed and medicated store bought. In 18 months or so, a BR, Nar, Slate, etc will finish at about 33 pounds for a tom or 20 for a hen. The standard bronze and WH, will finish about 40 pounds for a tom and 28 for a hen. Deduct 20% for weight of a dressed turkey after processing. Here are some pictures if 2 I raised till 18 months and processed myself last Thanksgiving, both toms, that dressed out @ 34 and 35 pounds:[​IMG]In the first year a heritage turkey is more leg meat than breast meat. All turkeys will need some additional high protein feed to grow enough muscle( meat) in addition to foraging. I hope this will help. I do sell and ship hatching eggs, so if you want to hatch your own and decide to get Holland Whites, you can PM me![​IMG] If you want BR, PM either Kuntrygirl in Louisiana or Frank53061 in Arkansas, they both raise beautiful BR and sell poults and eggs!
     
  7. MikeOhlh

    MikeOhlh Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 13, 2012
    Shiner, Texas
    My Coop
    Arielle - just got back from reading... and reading... lol, TONS of great info. I think I have gotten about 39 pages into it.

    Celie - I am interested as a result in the White Hollands... and I have come to the same conclusion about raising the BB turkeys for this year, and getting heritage poults to keep for the future flock. (is it a flock of turkeys... I don't thik so - ah, 'rafter of turkeys' i guess) Wow, somebody was talking about 80 pound birds... Our dog was 80 pounds. Maybe that was you, I lost track of who had what. I am interested in hatching eggs, since I also have a few chickens, but think my efforts are better focused on the other parts of my venture at the moment. I'll wait for the hatching part of the learning curve for later, lol. (I guess that leaves me putting the turkey before the egg...)

    I would have to have the poults shipped, I don't know if you do that, or what the costs would be. Ideal seems to have already sold out of the April ones since yesterday, so they are at May now... Looks like most of their heritage birds are around 10 ea, the local feed store has 10 BBB coming, and I might just get the lot of them. I am fortunate to have a few good choices for feed stores, (non of them seem to have ever hear of GMO, so they do live under a rock I think) But I can get my own feed ground, in smallish qtys like I do for the hogs. So I will have to find a good mix to give the the right protein etc. We also have a TSC... but they have this for answers [​IMG]. lol

    Thanks to all the BYC (and turkey) peeps for the fantastic threads and info on the bigger bird.
     
  8. Celie

    Celie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 23, 2012
    Tickfaw, Louisiana
    Yes, I did raise some BBW's that got rather huge before I processed them all, because I was trying to mate them, before I learned they were AI and bought them on an impulse at the local feed store. I restricted their feed, fed high protein and high calcium and approaching 2 years old as I remember, before they all were eaten. Turkeys do not get tough as the age like chickens do. When they were gone, I started raising the Hollands. By keeping their weight down, I was able to get a few fertile eggs from them before the tom got too big in the breast to mount the hen. I have a flock of 13 hens and 13 toms now, all heritage White Hollands, the hens are for reproduction and eggs and most of the toms(about 10 this year) were from last year and will be harvested for food this year. This year's hatchlings, that are not sold, will be next year's. I do not ship live birds. But if you can use the ideal's min. of 15, I would suggest you order soon, before they sell out. May is a very good month for the poults to arrive, as poults will drop dead from a sudden chill at the drop of a hat! Adult turkeys are tough as nails, go figure? Good luck on your endeavors. I started a thread in the TURKEY forum calledhttps://www.backyardchickens.com/t/...t-which-breeds-of-heritage-turkeys-taste-best if you want to get an idea of what breeds I am looking at for the future, depending on the outcome of the taste test![​IMG]
     

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