Newbie considering Cornish x's

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by texasbartrambaby, Dec 4, 2008.

  1. texasbartrambaby

    texasbartrambaby Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 3, 2008
    Tulia, Texas
    Hi all - just rec'd my new ameracaunas this morning but dh and I were considering purchasing cornish x's this spring. We have a large family (4 kiddos) and would love to have the meat. However, my question is:

    Is there anyone in the Amarillo/Plainview area of Texas that processes?? I am not sure I can do it yet, although my aunt has offered to show me how. Just don't know.

    Thanks for the help!
  2. Trollkiller

    Trollkiller Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 26, 2008
    Lake Como, Fl. 32157
    This is what I have learned so far with Cornish X.

    THEY STINK. Pine shavings will help but.... WOW!

    They die. Cornish X has a loss rate of 10%-30% due to genetics. Nothing is worse than having a healthy bird when you leave for work and having a dead or dying bird when you get home.

    Because they tend to die, you will tend to spend a lot of time making sure everything is just right. When I am at home I check them every hour. When I am at work the wife and kids check them every couple of hours. I work nights so they are being looked after around the clock and they still die. It is VERY frustrating. It is also normal.

    If you can raise the birds as a PRODUCT, where having to dispose of a dead one or having to break a dying bird's neck will mean no more to you than a paper jam in the printer, then by all means grow a batch. But if you know that it will bother you or anyone in the family then don't. Killing a cute baby chick is tougher than it sounds.

    If this is just for you and the family, I would skip over Cornish X and get a dual purpose bird instead.

    Personally I don't think I will be raising these mutant birds again. That may change if they are as tasty as everyone says they are.
  3. birdsofparadise

    birdsofparadise Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 15, 2008
    North Kohala, Hawaii
    There once was a company that went around seeking farmers to set up broiler barns with Cornish Xʻs for meat production. The statistics and cash flow looked great on paper, but everyone I knew who invested in this scam lost big money. Turned out the promoter WANTED them to fail so that they could re-possess the equipment and still have the farmer owe them the money for the birds, feed, etc.

    It might have worked with a breed other than Cornish X, but they are tough birds to raise.
  4. justhatchin

    justhatchin Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 5, 2008
    Galva, Kansas
    I am not sure exactly what I had this fall- cornish rock broilers I think- I bought 10- I butchered 10. I didn't have any problems but I didnot keep food in front of them 24/7. They were hefty enough. It was cooler not hot. I believe they get hot quickly. I had trouble keeping water in front of them.
  5. texasbartrambaby

    texasbartrambaby Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 3, 2008
    Tulia, Texas
    Thanks for the advice -

    I don't have a problem eating "the cute baby chicks". We eat the big brown eyed cows and the 4H pigs. Couldn't eat the goats though - [​IMG]

    I didn't realize that there was such a high death rate. My problem is I don't know HOW nor have the equipment to process. I am needing someone who does to process.

    I may look into a heavier meat bird for this, but I don't want to have to "raise" for 6 months either --

    Again, thanks so much!!!
  6. Brunty_Farms

    Brunty_Farms Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 29, 2007
    Don't get discouraged because, those death rates are not the norm. Out of 500 birds a batch we see only about 3-5 % death rate here. First off they are like any other chicken but with "special needs".

    What's worked for me and simply what's worked for me might not work for you as well but here it is.

    "Feed only 12 hours of constant feed and water and then let them sleep for the remaing 12. What some people seem to forget is that these birds need time to grow.... and you grow even when you sleep. These birds need a break just like any other chicken. They grow fast so don't compare your 4 week old broiler to your 4 week old dual purpose breed. Think of them as mature at this age and would you keep your adult layers on 24 hour lighting?"

    Next is start with a high protein feed. Start with 24% and after 4 weeks you can go to about 20% they grow extremely fast and need this higher protein. You can get good weights at about 6 weeks of age and then process them. This way you have minimal feed and money in them also the longer and bigger you try to raise them you increase your chances of running into problems and decrease your profits...or in your case you lose more money out of your wallet.

    Give them exercise if you can put them on pasture in the summer... do it. If not make sure they have plenty of room inside.

    Don't be discouraged as for about $5.00 you can have a full grown 5 lb chicken ready to eat that is healthy and raised by you....

  7. Acre of Blessings

    Acre of Blessings Canning/Sewing Addict

    Apr 3, 2008
    Axton, VA
    We purchased 100 cornish rock x meaties. We lost 4. In my own opinion, they are not mutant birds, they are a breed that is bred to grow fast and give great results. I think location is key to success with these birds.

    These are birds that have to stay cool in the summer or warm in the winter. I feed from 7 am to 7 pm due to the fact they need rest and sleep. Clean water is a must. Always check the water. Clean bedding is a must.

    Don't be afraid of them. We have butchered 30 already and have eaten 5 and they taste so good.

    But, you need to try them for yourself. Don't let the opinions of others or myself make your mind up for you. YOu can do it. Let you Aunt come over and show you how. I didn't think I could but butcher either, I am now.
  8. Bossroo

    Bossroo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 15, 2008
    All of todays' chicken breeds were selectively bred by man over thousands of years from the jungle fowl to serve a variety of purposes. Now if you turn loose any of these breeds out into the jungle, I would hazard to guess that they wouldn't survive the night. Same thing here. The Cornish cross was developed by highly educated people over the last half century to meet the demands of the market place. ie.: to produce a maximum amount of meat in the shortest period of time and grown under strict and intence management environment. Turn them loose into the barnyard or free range and they will not prosper. Overfeed them 24/7 and their organs will not support their bodies' massive growth rate. If in daught ... read and follow the directions. As for processing, quite simple really... all you really need is your brain, two hands, a sharp knife and a pot big enough to hold a chicken with 150 degrees of water. Process away and enjoy the fruits of you labor!!!
  9. greyfields

    greyfields Overrun With Chickens

    Mar 15, 2007
    Washington State
    You cannot beat raising your own chicken meat. I'd say to it, despite the potential drawbacks and heartbreaks.

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