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Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by Bossroo, Jan 11, 2009.

  1. Bossroo

    Bossroo Songster

    Jun 15, 2008
    It has been claimed that the Cornish X is... a MONSTER or a MUTANT or a GENETICALLY ENGINEERED ORGANISM or a FREEK and a few other claims. Now, it may be possible for a natural gene mutation as this occurs in Nature from time to time and is the basis of evolution of new species. It is also possible that someone recognized the new gene mutation and saw the benefit gained by selectively breeding the new mutated bird with selected other lines of chickens. Or, it may be a group of dedicated scientists that spent decades of selectivey mating lines of superior meat producers and crossbreeding them to achieve superior results of producing the most meat in the shortest time possible. If anyone has scientific proof of gene modification with another organism by a human , PROOVE IT !!!

  2. Mojo Chick'n

    Mojo Chick'n Empress of Chickenville

    Can't we just say they are nasty critters to raise and leave it at that ? [​IMG]

    I understand they are not geneticaly altered - that doesn't mean they aren't freaks [​IMG]

  3. FarmerChick

    FarmerChick Songster

    Jul 30, 2008
    North Carolina
    Peterson Farms admits they do genetic research.

    From their website.

    Peterson Farms is a fully integrated, privately owned poultry company with headquarters in Decatur, Arkansas. Founded in 1939 by Lloyd Peterson, the company is primarily known for its genetic research and its production of top-quality breeder poultry, but Peterson Farms is also the parent company of a Processing Division, Peterson LP Gas, L&L Farms and Decatur General Store.

    Here is more:

    This has been true since meat became a primary focus for chicken genetics in the 1940s, and confinement-rearing became the dominant form of production for the U.S. poultry industry. A 1950s contest, sponsored by the Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company, called “The Chicken of Tomorrow” encouraged the development of meatier birds. Cornish crosses became the birds of choice at that time. Since then the conventional poultry industry has genetically refined them for rapid growth, efficient feed conversion, broad-breastedness, limited feathering (for ease of plucking), and other traits considered desirable for rearing very large numbers of birds in confinement. Because of their rapid growth, they reach a market weight of five pounds (live weight) in six to seven weeks.

    However, most pastured poultry producers today use the Cornish crosses because they are readily available, not because they are ideally suited to rearing on pasture. Many of the characteristics that make the Cornish-cross broiler strains good for industrial confinement production are not well-suited for alternative production systems. Many pastured poultry producers see the Cornish crosses as having weak legs, excessive rates of heart attacks, a high incidence of congestive heart failure (ascites), poor foraging ability, poor heat tolerance, and other liabilities when raised on pasture. While most producers value their rapid growth, others find it unnaturally fast. In most pasture-based production systems, Cornish crosses usually produce a five-pound bird in eight weeks. Keeping the birds longer than eight weeks and allowing them to get larger can contribute to even greater leg problems.

    Breeding Companies

    Arbor Acres (includes downloadable management guides)
    Ross Breeders (includes technical manuals)
    Nicholas Turkeys
    Peterson Farms—www.petersonfarms.com

    Many pastured poultry producers would like to raise birds that are better suited to range production than the Cornish crosses. Therefore, the purpose of this publication is to identify the genetic options available to producers who do not want to use the conventional confinement-production model.

    I think they do "splice and slice" genes etc. to produce new genetics for what they are needed for....fast food for massive populations.
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2009
  4. willheveland

    willheveland Songster

    Jan 29, 2008
    southern tier,NY
    I don't think their freaks.Just good selective breeding.No different than horses,dogs or cattle or any other champion bred for a specific purpose.Now what would we call Sylvester Stalone,Lance Armstrong and Arnold Swartzanegger, Chemically Engineered? Will
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2009
  5. MissPrissy

    MissPrissy Crowing Premium Member

    May 7, 2007
    Forks, Virginia
    Broilers were developed initially by selective breeding.

    What's the big deal? Has someone been feeding you a load of used chicken bedding and you ate the whole plate? [​IMG] [​IMG]
  6. FarmerChick

    FarmerChick Songster

    Jul 30, 2008
    North Carolina
    Cornish X is meant for a specific purpose. fast growing for full scale food production. I think they have had great success but also that fast weight gain does give medical problems. BUT, being we need alot of food to feed millions and millions, these birds are doing it fast and efficient.

    Good for the backyard person? You can grow them slower and it is recommended to do so......but you can push them also and get them to market just like the big guys do.

    I think cause they are crossed for specific reasons, they just get a bad wrap...also with the medical problems they can have.....none of us like medical problems....LOL
  7. jhill1440

    jhill1440 In the Brooder

    Feb 7, 2008
    Central Texas
    I am a researcher at a large college in texas. I "cut and paste" genes everyday, but only in bacteria. We can "knock-out" any gene we want, in a mouse, but that's deleting not adding. It is VERY difficult and VERY time consuming to integrate a gene from one species to another. When you do get a gene into a mouse and it actually does something (has a phenotype), it is a BIG deal and everyone knows about it.

    To find the right set of genes and integrate them into a chicken to make it grow faster, would require untold manhours and BILLIONS of dollars. If someone was successful they would be awarded a Nobel prize. It ranks right up there with curing cancer.

    People have been going down this road but have not seen anything yet. It will happen one day but that day is far off using some as yet not available technology.

    As far as vegetables are concerned, you have been eating "cut and paste" genes for a while now. But thats a whole 'nother can 'o worms.

    Hope this helps

  8. greyfields

    greyfields Crowing

    Mar 15, 2007
    Washington State
    All the animals we use for meat have been genetically modified. The difference being only farmers did it through selective breeding (and inbreeding); whereas today's genetic engineering is done in a 'test tube'.

    So, I find there are two kinds of people. The first don't realize all our livestock is already genetically engineered to begin with (try releasing farm animals in the wild and see how well they do). The second accept this is the case, but are troubled by the pace and rate by which we can do it now through genetic engineering.

    It's an interesting debate, especially with those who fall into the 2nd category. I don't feel strongly either way and generally enjoy life. Seems to me there are more interesting subjects to take on than this nuanced one.
  9. Bossroo

    Bossroo Songster

    Jun 15, 2008
    It seems to me that it took thousands of years before man learned how to make a machine that allowed man to fly. It has now been about 100 years and we now are voyaging into space quite often. Man also used the abacus for thousands of years and only about the last 40 years to have a computer and about 15 years to have the personal computer. Mother Nature demands for the survival of the fittest. Man steps in to select those animals that produce the best results for his particular needs. It has been about 150 years ago when a lowly monk discovered the laws of genetics, and look at the recent pace of breeding superior animals through genetic selection by knowledgeable scientists. Dairy cows now produce about twice the milk as the top producing cows did just 50 years ago through sire testing research programs. Their genes are spread more rapidly through the use of artificial insemination and very acurate record keeping. Hog breeds just 50 years ago looked radically different than today's and produce much leaner cuts of pork. Sheep breeds of just 50 years ago also look radically different as today's, which are taller, longer, leaner, and produce much leaner cuts of lamb. So what makes the Cornish X the subject of vilification, bashing and bad mouthing?
  10. Brunty_Farms

    Brunty_Farms Songster

    Apr 29, 2007
    I'm sure people don't intend to bad mouth or talk down on the cornish x but it happens. With every argument or experiment you have two sides and who is right? The person that bends science to make every animal fit for mans needs? Or the person that wants what they think is best for chickens?

    I for one make my living on the birds that defy all odds. I can only wonder what the next few years of genetics will bring.

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