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Ross Cobs as meat birds

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by becstar, Aug 3, 2008.

  1. becstar

    becstar Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 3, 2008
    Birmingham, England
    Hi guys. I am new to the forum and new to raising chickens. I live in Birmingham, England and just wanted to clear up a query on the type of meat chicks I have at present. I have bought 10 Ross Cobs as they are the only breed of meat chick I can get locally to where I live. I have been reading lots of posts from you guys on this forum and havn't heard much talk about this breed for meat. Is that because they aren't the best breed to have, or do they have a different name in America and Canada? I know that might sound really dumb, but sometimes the names for things here and over the pond differ! I bought Storys Guide and found the need to 'translate' some of the terms in there too! There seems to be a lot of talk about Cornish X as meat birds. Are these diffeent to the Ross Cobb? And if so, what are the good points and bad points about Ross birds for meat? Thanks for reading:)
     
  2. dancingbear

    dancingbear Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I had to look them up, I hadn't ever heard of them. I gather that they're popular in England and maybe Australia, I don't know if they're even available in the U.S.

    The little bit that I found sounds like they are very similar to the Cornish-Rock crosses that are the most common meat bird here. they grow very fast, lay around a lot, and are prone to leg problems. The Ross Cobbs sound like they may be similar, but I don't think they're the same. The C-R X's are Cornish crossed with Plymouth Rock, special strains of each that have proven rapid growth of the hybrid offspring.

    I read elsewhere that the most popular meat bird in England for many, many years, was a cross of Cornish roo over a Dorking hen. That's one I want to try, I'm currently trying to acquire some Dorkings for breeding.

    Sorry I don't have more info, I wish you luck in finding what you need. I'd think that the care and feeding would be the same for both breeds, I hope that helps a bit.
     
  3. becstar

    becstar Out Of The Brooder

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    Thank you so much for taking the time to do some research for me![​IMG] Seems that my initial thought was right and the Ross Cobb is kinda like the British version of the Cornish X in America and Canada! The only difference I found was the slaughter age for these chickens. The Ross Cobb should be slaughtered at about 16 weeks, however, apparently the meat tastes just as good a month or two later. Whereas the Cornish X can be ready as early as 8 weeks. I am rearing mine free range so they may take a little longer to be fat enough as they will be getting lots of excercise!

    I tried to bit of research for you in return and I found a company in Montanna ( I realise it's not exactly next door to Kentucky), but they will ship fertile eggs anywhere within the States. They sell a range of Dorking breeds and egg prices range from $1 - $2.50 each, plus $14.50 for shipping per dozen. So if you have an incubator, why not hatch your own Dorkings?! Hope this helps. Best wishes from England:D. Becky.
     
  4. becstar

    becstar Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 3, 2008
    Birmingham, England
  5. greyfields

    greyfields Overrun With Chickens

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    I thought the Ross-Cobb was a broiler; but maybe I'm confusing them with a sex-linked laying hybrid. Regarding raising breeds for meat, there are custom bred broilers - then everything else. Everything else (any purbred or laying hybrid) comes nowhere near to a broiler.

    In the US, I'm raising the colored range broilers which are identical to the birds by Hubbard in France for the Label Rouge scheme. I couldn't be happier with the results. I did not enjoy raising the traditional Cornish Crosses and am very pleased we have an alternative now with these colored birds.
     
  6. becstar

    becstar Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks for your contribution:) Am I right in thinking that the term 'broiler' is a chicken that is ready for slaughter at 7 or 8 weeks? My Ross' are meant to have reached their peak at 14-16 weeks, so that must be the only difference between the Cornish X and the Ross. When I first looked into the best meat chicken to try raising, I was shocked at how young they are ready at. I mean, whether it's 8 weeks or 16 weeks, thats so young. As you can probably tell, I am a complete newbie at chicken rearing, but food prices in Britain (and elsewherre around the world) are getting so high that I thought it was time to go as self sufficient as I can. I refuse to buy mass produced chicken from the supermarkets here as I think it's cruel. What better way than to raise my own? I know they will have had a happy life and I will also know what food has gone in to them:.
    I am looking forward to tasting my Ross Cobs and I have also heard that Marans make an excellent 'dual -purpose' bird. Good egg production and quality meat too! I may try rearing those next. I guess I am experimenting at the moment!
     
  7. blue90292

    blue90292 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 30, 2007
    Rosharon, TX
    i was listening to morning radio and they had "ask your dumb question" day. its when people get to ask questions without fear that people may think you're stupid for asking such a stupid question. anyway....

    the lady called in wanting to know if the drummets that you eat when eating buffalo wings came from baby chickens, as in the drummets were baby chicken legs v. ummm, whatever else it could be because she would feel so bad if they were little baby chick legs.

    i sooo wanted to call in and tell them, "all the chicken you eat are babies!!!" lol. but i didn't because everyone in my office would have told me they heard me on the radio being the crazy chicken lady. lol and i wanted to tell them cornish hens aren't cornish hens at all but chickens that were processed at 4 weeks. but i didn't. lol

    and then!

    one of the radio announcers says, "no, the drummets come from midget chickens". he was totally serious. [​IMG] that's when i really wanted to call in and tell him "they're called bantams, not midgets". but i didn't. lol

    but it's true. we don't know any of this stuff unless we're actually involved. i'm still trying to get over midget carrots (which aren't midget carrots at all) being dipped in chlorine before packaging. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2008
  8. dancingbear

    dancingbear Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Becstar, thank you for the Dorking info! That will help a lot. I've actually incubated one batch of fertile eggs, but only got one chick out of it. I call him my $21 dollar chicken. Or her, I can't tell yet. The package had shown signs of very rough handling by the post office. The same lady who sent them is sending me another lot when the weather cools a bit, and my personal things calm down a little.

    That link is the best price I've seen for fertile eggs, though, I'll probably get some of them. I really wanted red or colored, but for the price, maybe silver grays will do just fine. I was thinking they were more white, but they look dark enough to live here. (The white birds get picked off by predators more than any others.)

    I free-range all my birds, once they're old enough, so anything older than about 10 weeks tends to get tough. They taste fine, at any age, though older birds are more flavorful than the young ones, IMO. I understand there are breeds that stay tender longer, though. You'll have to let me know how yours turn out. If they get tough, and you need any ideas for cooking then so they'll be tender, let me know, I've eaten plenty of tough old roos!
     
  9. dancingbear

    dancingbear Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Blue90292, That's so funny about the radio show! I hear misinformation all the time on TV and the radio, I have to wonder sometimes how these people keep their jobs. Don't the writers research anything before put it out there? And don't the broadcasters themselves know anything at all that doesn't come from a cue card? I often think, "There's a job opening there...", but they probably wouldn't hire somebody telling them they're wrong about so many things.

    It's hard to imagine that somebody wouldn't know that a drummette is part of the wing. I mean, they have seen wings, haven't they?

    When I was working, I used to sell my extra eggs at work. I separated the really tiny eggs for my customers with small children, and I had some bantam Aracaunas and EE's, so I had eggs for kids that were tiny eggs in a rainbow of colors. One lady asked me if they were banty rooster eggs.

    I was joking with a friend who'd never seen green eggs before, telling her the green eggs weren't ripe yet. She asked me, in all seriousness, how to tell when they get ripe. Then I felt bad, because I didn't want to make her feel dumb!
     
  10. becstar

    becstar Out Of The Brooder

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    Before I moved to the countryside (about a year ago), I was a city girl and always had been. Moving to the country where I now live in a cottage with a few acres of land really opened my eyes to rural issues and gave me the opportunity to start living a more self sufficient, peaceful life with a real understanding about where my food comes from. I would consider myslef a reasonably intelligent person with a university degree and a good, professional job, HOWEVER, when it came to trying to work out how i go about starting my self sufficient new beginning, I realised just how ignorant I was in this area!

    Unfortunately, I don't think I am alone. I think this kind of ignorance is a reflection on the sad state of the western world's (in particular) dislocation with food production. The closest many people come to the source of their food is when they go to the supermarket to buy their weekly groceries! But this is what capitalism, over-population and people wanting low-cost food has bought us. Animals have become merely a lump of vacuum packed meat. Almost a generic production line of body parts. So, as I am learning bit by bit; as I am re-connecting myself with the source of my food; as I am beginning to re-evaluate the importance of an animals welfare before it sits on my dinner table, I am hoping to live more intune with nature and begin to pass on what knowledge I find to other people about these things.

    So rather than mock or feel smug about what many people don't know because it's just not part of their day-to-day lives, I try to tell (in a non-preaching way) about how easy and rewarding it is to begin living a little more consciously. And it can start as small as growing a few plants in your window, or if you are lucky to have a little yard, creating a little veg plot. I want to encourage people to go ahead and have a couple of hens in their back yard for eggs!

    My eyes have been opened and I have realised that understanding and caring about where your food comes from doesn't just have to be for people living in rural areas with lots of land. From little acorns, mighty oak trees grow.

    Vive la revolution!![​IMG]
     

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