Preparing for 2013 Thanksgiving and no nothing about turkeys

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by LaynaDon95, Nov 29, 2012.

  1. LaynaDon95

    LaynaDon95 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 18, 2012
    My family is trying to start raising/growing the majority of our own food, and we'd like turkeys to be our next step. We aren't talking about keeping them full time, but ordering a few each year to raise for Thanksgiving and Christmas. Some of our extended family (well, immediate family, too. Who am I kidding?) are very picky eaters, so we'd like to choose a breed that will taste most like what you buy at the store. We are looking at the BB whites. I don't know if I've so much as seen a turkey in person before, so I have next to know idea what breed would be best, how to feed it, how to house it, what diseases they are prone to, anything. I need all the advice and information I can get. We will be ordering from Ideal in the spring and getting some broilers, laying pullets, and ducks. When should we order the turkeys? How long do they take to grow out? I know to feed them high protein feed. I plan on feeding them game bird starter as babies. Will just high protein laying pellets work when they are older? Help me, oh wise ones. I have so many questions, I don't want to overload you. [​IMG]
  2. Oregon Blues

    Oregon Blues Overrun With Chickens

    Apr 14, 2011
    Central Oregon
    If the turkeys are specifically to be butchered, go ahead and get the Broad Breasted Whites. They are very easy to be around, very sociable and trusting, so they are easy to deal with. They don't fly, which also makes them easier to deal with.

    They will be the most like the super market birds, although they should taste better because they have been raised better and not injected with mystery solutions to make them weigh more.
  3. kuntrygirl

    kuntrygirl Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

    Feb 20, 2008
    Opelousas, Louisiana
  4. LaynaDon95

    LaynaDon95 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 18, 2012

    They would be strictly for butchering. We aren't ready for keeping breeders at this point. Thank you! :)

    I've looked at it, but that would be a lot of digging to find what I'm wanting. Thanks, though! :)
  5. Celie

    Celie Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 23, 2012
    Tickfaw, Louisiana
    BBW take about 4 to 5 months before they are ready to harvest. All turkey poults are more delicate than chickens, so keep them in the brooder for about 6 weeks, before putting them outside. After they get their feathers, put the feeder in with them for only 12 hours a day to avoid leg problems or heart trouble from putting on too much weight too soon, before their bones have a chance to develop enough to support their heavy weight gain. Most hatcheries require you to buy 15, which is a lot of meat. If your freezer can't hold that many and your family doesn't want that many, try to get your local feed store and buy them there. If a feed store sells turkey poults, it's probably a BBW! Good luck with your new project![​IMG]

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