Proper Terminology - Culling

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Lazy J Farms Feed & Hay

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As an Animal Scientist I sometimes become irritated by people using incorrect terms for aspects of livetock production. Typically I let these irritations fall off my back, but I can no longer let the incorrect of of CULLING on BYC go on without a correction.

Culling is the act of removing an unwanted, sick or injured, or poor performing animal from a herd or flock. These can simply be sick animals, spent hens, downer cows, or a myriad other malidys that can occur on a farm.

When an animal is acceptable and ready for meat it is harvested, slaughtered, butchered, etc. but NOT culled.

I know this is a minor issue, but we should use the correct terminology when we talk about our production practices and flocks.

Jim
 

Littlechick

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dictionary results for: cull
Dictionary.com Unabridged (v 1.1) - Cite This Source - Share This
cull /kʌl/ Pronunciation Key - Show Spelled Pronunciation[kuhl] Pronunciation Key - Show IPA Pronunciation
–verb (used with object)
1. to choose; select; pick.
2. to gather the choice things or parts from.
3. to collect; gather; pluck.


We say cull in regards to the animals we slaughter, as in "Let's cull some of the non layers today, I'm ready for some chicken soup". We CHOOSE to PICK a specific animal to kill and eat. So technically, cull is correct. In the literal sense, any any thing chosen to have something done with it is culled. It also sounds nicer than slaughter, butcher, kill, and any number of other words in the category for what we do with meat animals.
 

Lazy J Farms Feed & Hay

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In livestock production vernacular Cull is defined as removal of unwanted animals.

In the production closeouts I review for pork, poultry, and beef production we track the number of Dead/Culls, in other words no-value animals. Spent hens are culled from the flock. Sick pigs are culled from the herd.

You can pull up all of the definitions you want, but in Agriculture Cull means removal of unwanted or sick animals. It does NOT mean choosing prime animals for harvest as meat, milk, or eggs.


Jim
 
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SandraMort

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I confess that I wince every time I hear that, too. I was very surprised to see that in the full definition:

Dictionary.com Unabridged (v 1.1) - Cite This Source - Share This
cull /kʌl/ Pronunciation Key - Show Spelled Pronunciation[kuhl] Pronunciation Key - Show IPA Pronunciation
–verb (used with object)
1. to choose; select; pick.
2. to gather the choice things or parts from.
3. to collect; gather; pluck.
–noun
4. act of culling.
5. something culled, esp. something picked out and put aside as inferior.


So yeah, the definition LazyJ and I use is there, but it's FIFTH? Talk about feeling silly now!

Further down on the page...

From his herd he culls, For slaughter, from the fairest of his bulls. --Dryden.

Whitest honey in fairy gardens culled. --Tennyson.


Well, there you go. Shut up, Sandy.
I won't complain in chat annnnnymore. But I don't promise to use the word that way. It still makes me cringe.
 

kinnip

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As scientific vocabulary moves into the mainstream, we'll see more words like this. It's pidgin, it's the natural evolution of language. I have a hard time with it too sometimes, but you can't stop people communicating as they will. Heck, even I have to admit that "lite" is now a word.
 

Littlechick

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Try playing an online game. I play an mmrpg, and I cringe quite often over some of the words and phrases (and spelling!) used. To each his own, I say.
 

dancingbear

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I agree, "cull" is often used by people as a euphemism for "kill", "slaughter", "butcher", etc., because it helps them avoid thinking about what the deed actually is. It bugs me, too.

In livestock vernacular it is used the way Lazy J says. It isn't to indicate routine slaughter of meat animals just because it's time to do it. If you have extra roosters in your dual purpose birds, and you decide to eat them, sell them, get rid of them in some way, that's culling. If you have an animal that's not gonna make it to the slaughter date, like the C x's that get too heavy to walk, and you kill them ahead of time before they drop dead on you, that's culling. If you have one that's sick, deformed, or otherwise unfit, and you put it down, that's culling.

SandraMort, the order of the definitions isn't in order of validity. The 1st one isn't "more correct" than the last one. I thought they were placed in order of most common usage, but I don't think it really works out that way.

Suppose you're at the grocery with your spouse. You're in the produce department. Might you say to your spouse, "would you go grab a bag of carrots while I cull a head of lettuce?" Do you go shopping and cull a pair of shoes? Or a dress? I never have. In fact, I've never heard the word "cull" used in the first three ways listed.
The examples they sited after the definitions are archaic usage, too. So I think you were right in the first place, regardless.

A lot of people say "ekspecially" instead of "especially", the level of incorrect word usage and pronunciation is very annoying to me. Maybe because Grandma was a schoolteacher.
 

dacjohns

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Jenny,
That was great. I think I'll cull the carrots and my wife can grab the lettuce.

In timber cull trees are the undesirable trees, not the ones you harvest.
 

DougD

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Typically I let these irritations fall off my back, but I can no longer let the incorrect of of CULLING on BYC go on without a correction

Huh?


Since we breed toward the APA standard only the best cockerels are kept each year. All the extras are CULLED.

They are then plucked and BUTCHERED.​
 
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Jamie_Dog_Trainer

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Thank you for this post Lazy J. I brought this up in chat a few days ago as well. Culling is not another word for killing an animal with the intent to eat it, it has its own definition. Thanks again....
 
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