Raising non-meat breed cockerels?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by Hennyetta, Mar 8, 2013.

  1. Hennyetta

    Hennyetta Chirping

    Jan 29, 2013
    I got 8 LF packing peanuts with my order of bantams yesterday. I figured I'd probably end up with some, and thought I'd sell or give them away, but now I think maybe I'll raise them myself for meat. I only have experience with raising Cornish X for meat, so I need advice about the best way to raise and feed these guys for the optimum results. Is meat bird feed the best way to go, or not? What age would be best to get them processed? I'm not sure what breed they are... does that make any difference?

  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Free Ranging

    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    It really doesn't make much difference. Whatever they are, they'll take a lot longer to reach size. If they're egg breeds they never will get real big but they taste just like chicken. The egg breeds I usually process when they start crowing.
    They'll actually taste better IMO because they're older. The meat has a chance to develop more chicken flavor.

    I usually start them on a 20-24% protein game bird type feed. Let them free range as early as they want to go outside and then at about two weeks befor I plan on processing, I take them off of pasture and put them indoors with just about 8 hours of light and switch to a grain and milk diet.
  3. Bossroo

    Bossroo Songster

    Jun 15, 2008
    These birds will take a L O N G time to put meat on their bones. Since time is money, they will eat much more and one will expend much energy to care and feed them to put on weight over their time in the coop/yard which equates to wasted $$$.
  4. Hennyetta

    Hennyetta Chirping

    Jan 29, 2013
    Thanks for your replies. I've decided to go with my original plan and try to sell/give them away.

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