Non-Broiler Breed for Meat?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by KAKBucks, Jul 8, 2008.

  1. KAKBucks

    KAKBucks Songster

    Jun 8, 2008
    Central Ohio
    I hate my broilers. They are so incredibly ugly, and they just drain the feeders and waterers. I can barely keep up with the weather and two babies to tow out to the barn with me.

    My mother has banned me from ever ordering broilers again. [​IMG]

    I have 50 mixed roos that I also ordered to raise for meat. I know they take longer to mature and everything, but they're so much more fun. I can get the mixed roos for close to $.50 a piece plus shipping if I buy 50+, which isn't a problem. I had this batch shipped with other birds I'd ordered so there was minimal extra shipping. I think I paid like $20 for the 50 birds.

    I'm wondering if anyone has any preference on standard breeds to raise for meat. Buying the individual breeds isn't much more than the mix, and if there's a significant difference in the breeds . . .

    I'm antsy about the wyandottes. My last experience with wyandotte roosters existed of my having to take a shovel out to the barn with me because the 3 of them would attack me. They were quite quickly given to a friend who pu tthem in a pot (this was before we were butchering).

    I have loved buff orp roos in the past, but I can't remember how long they take to mature. I enjoy their personalities though.

    I just figure if I'm going to have that many birds around I should at least enjoy them! [​IMG]

  2. Quote:The reason they are "draining" the feeders is that they are growing fast which is what they were bred to do.

    If you want to raise meat then use strains that were bred for meat, the so-called "Dual Purpose" breeds are no longer dual purpose and you will be unhappy with the feed conversion ratio and the lack of meat on the roos from these breeds.

  3. KLH2010

    KLH2010 Songster

    Apr 20, 2008
    Have you tried something like the free-range broilers? Maybe they would work better for you.
  4. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    In the long run cost only sense, dual purpose cost more. However, you'll probably enjoy it more despite the lack of meat and length of time growing them since you're not a fan of the little cornish x piggies. You can free range the crosses, but that will also cost more since you'll have to feed them longer and care for them longer to reach the same weight. Tractors are great for moving the babies when young, and letting them out later one, most don't go too far though.
  5. KAKBucks

    KAKBucks Songster

    Jun 8, 2008
    Central Ohio
    My broilers range in a 20x40 dog run so it's close to free ranging. I try and give all my birds some decent pen space and free range time if possible. Of course my darn adult layers get out of their pen and go roost in the barn rafters over my alpacas.

    I may end up clipping their wings to see if that helps.

    I know I'll have to feed a "dual purpose" breed longer so the feed conversion isn't as good, but the broilers are just so darn ugly and have no personality beyond "feed me".

    I also have quite a few farm visitors. I think some have started to wonder about the health of the broilers because they're almost bald on their butts and bellies. They do look so strange next to their regular chicken counterparts. When perception is everything I do have to think about that sort of thing.

    Of course all the other birds in the pen and in the other pens are in great condition, but the broilers just look so shocking in comparison.

  6. fullhouse

    fullhouse Songster

    Apr 14, 2008
    It really depends on the farm, but sometimes any chicken looks "scraggly" in a farm setting. I went to the dairy farm yesterday and the chickens looked nasty. Probably all the cow poo they were walking through. [​IMG]

    Anyhow, if you want a dual purpose bird, so far the Sussex, Rocks, and Delaware look the best. They will be processed 7-31 and then I will be able to really tell which I like best.
  7. greyfields

    greyfields Crowing

    Mar 15, 2007
    Washington State
    Quote:They're all pretty much the same. You're looking at 15+ weeks to a 4-5 pound live weight bird.

    The heaviest cockrels in my flock are definitely the Black Sex Links, though. You may want to go the hybrid route. Altough, the idea of raising roosters for meat simply doesn't make sense financially.

    Quote:Bigger the breed, the slower they grow.

    If you pencil everything out, you would be better off buying organic, free range chicken from whole foods than raising dual purpose or purebred roosters for meat. But who am I to stop you. [​IMG]

    I raise the RedBro's from JM Hatchery. They are nothing like broilers you may have had before.
  8. urbanagrarian

    urbanagrarian Songster

    Feb 4, 2007
    I've raised Plymouth White Rock roosters for eating. After about 14 weeks they are a good size and quite tasty. Of the dual purpose those seem the best to me. Although I must admit I now mostly raise Cornish X for meat. I find if I let the Cornish X have lots of room and encourage them to move they do well for me.

    Everyone always complains about the amount of feed and manure with Cornish X . I believe it's actually LESS than with dual purpose breeds. Its just all in a shorter time frame say 7 weeks for a Cornish X vs. 14 weeks for a dual purpose.
  9. KAKBucks

    KAKBucks Songster

    Jun 8, 2008
    Central Ohio
    Maybe I should try the red bro's.
  10. blue90292

    blue90292 Songster

    Jan 30, 2007
    Rosharon, TX
    the black or red broilers from ideal are also nice. they mature at 10-12 weeks and are nice to look at.

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