New to the thought of butchering

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by championny, Apr 17, 2008.

  1. championny

    championny Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 21, 2008
    Saint Johns, AZ
    I have postponed asking this, but I figured what the heck. I am really a big chicken lover, but I have wanted to try to raise a few for meat. However the thought of butchering seems sad to me, but I am still nonetheless curious as to how some of your guys raise the hens you love and the ones you are going to place on the table?

    I suppose I can do it, but its helpful to get the insights of others as well. What do you all think is the best way to start into this?
     
  2. MissPrissy

    MissPrissy Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Don't make pets out of the meat birds. they grow fast and are dispatched at 8 - 10 weeks. Don't name them. Tend their needs. Feed them. Keep their coop clean. They grow so fast and make so much poop mess you'll forget their cuteness by 6 - 8 weeks.
     
  3. championny

    championny Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks Miss Prissy. I am going to attempt that. What breed makes the best meat birds does anyone suggest?
     
  4. MissPrissy

    MissPrissy Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    I raised jumbo cornish cross from mcmurray last fall. I will do so again this fall. They do much better in cooler weather than in warm.
     
  5. championny

    championny Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Alright. I will do some research and check that out. I should get males as that is more of an incentive to butcher them so I don't have to deal with their crowing. [​IMG]
     
  6. MissPrissy

    MissPrissy Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    They are dispatched at 8 - 10 weeks. They won't be old enough to crow. Any older than that and the meat is tough and only good for stewing. They are docile eating machines.

    Grocery store chickens are butchered at about 5 weeks.
     
  7. championny

    championny Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I think its amazing how my hens grow at a medium rate and those guys get heavy and big at such a young age. The thought of fresh meat is tempting and we all love chicken here in my house. Hmmm, I think I am visiting Ideals website tonight.
     
  8. nutz4critters

    nutz4critters Out Of The Brooder

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    Don't get on a first-name basis. We used to raise rabbits. Partly to sell and partly for the freezer. People used to ask us how we could eat Thumper. Actually, I didn't eat Thumper -- she was too good of a mom to kill her. (Don't know what kind of rabbit she was, but she was HUGE and would raise up to 15 babies at a time w/o losing any. She took in orphans or thrown-aways.) [​IMG]

    You have your "pets" with whom you are on a first name basis. The others that you know are going to end up in the freezer are given a number. Yes, they are adorable as babies, but once they get to that so-ugly-only-a-mother-can-love-them stage, you'll get over the fact they were cute as babies.

    Spend time with the ones you'll be keeping. Spend minimum amounts of time with future occupants of the freezer. It helps with killing them if they did something stupid just before you dispatch them. Like fly in your face and break your glasses or something like that! No that did not happen to me, but it did happen to my grandmother. [​IMG]

    Tell them you've been glad to have them around and that you're sending them to a happy chicken scratching ground if it helps your feelings any. Just think -- abundant food, no bugs, no predators, and they can crow to their hearts' content! [​IMG]
     
  9. championny

    championny Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yeah. For me it s a mind set thing. I think those Cornish rocks are pretty ugly anyways, so I won't have a hard time with that. I am actually researching one how to process them and I think I want to give it a try. They'll only be around for a few weeks anyways so no hard feelings or much time to get attached.

    Thanks for the warning about the glasses! I just bought a new pair so I won't wear them around those guys.
     
  10. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    One thing I do have to say though... is spend just enough time with them so that when butcher day does come, your presence and moving them around and holding them to take them to the deed doesn't scare the life out of them literally. Then again, these birds are far from flighty due to their massive size. Best of luck!
     

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