Processing males early

ande1560

In the Brooder
5 Years
Mar 6, 2014
16
0
22
Mid Michigan
My males are just under 5 weeks old right now, inside my basement, and crowing even through the night. My roommates are starting to get a little frustrated with my new endeavor. I know they are fully grown to be processed by 8 weeks, but how large of a weight difference is there between 5 and 8 weeks? Am I creating a huge loss by processing them 3 weeks early? Is there a way you found that keeps the crowing to a minimum so I can wait out the last three weeks?
 

Chicken-Farmer

Chirping
8 Years
Jan 12, 2012
143
9
81
Keep them in the dark 24/7 and they should stop crowing. I have butchered males this early for the same reason. They will be about 8 oz live weight by that age instead of 14oz by 8 weeks. They will still have meat, just not as much. It will take a few more to make a meal.

Chicken-Farmer
 

dc3085

Crowing
7 Years
Jan 6, 2013
3,288
331
251
SF Bay Area, California
If you keep them in dark too much they won't eat enough to fatten so you 'll want some light in there at some point. Most birds can't see in the dark. If you have hens where they can see them, they'll crow constantly, moving hens out of sightline always helps.
 

ande1560

In the Brooder
5 Years
Mar 6, 2014
16
0
22
Mid Michigan
Thank you for the help! I will try to move them to a darker area. Will they be able to smell the females? Could I just partition the hutch they're in now or do I need to move them further away?
 

dc3085

Crowing
7 Years
Jan 6, 2013
3,288
331
251
SF Bay Area, California
As long as they can't see them. Coturnix senses are pretty weak, they run pretty much on eyesight. Its part of why the flip the heck out when you startle them.
 

USAmma

Songster
10 Years
Jul 26, 2009
187
21
128
Just throw a couple of towels or a comforter over the enclosure at night and they should be quiet. And if you do process them, make sure to cook up something good for your roomates.
 

ande1560

In the Brooder
5 Years
Mar 6, 2014
16
0
22
Mid Michigan
Just throw a couple of towels or a comforter over the enclosure at night and they should be quiet. And if you do process them, make sure to cook up something good for your roomates.
They're pretty excited about the eggs. It's nice to have pets with a little "return" for all the care and hard work we put into them ;)
 
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