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Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by yoker, Dec 28, 2008.
What are the basics on raising turkeys?
What are broad Breasted bronze turkeys like?
The broad breasteds can not breed on their own, so if you want to raise turkeys you'd have to artificially inseminate them. There are a lot of 'heritage' turkey breeds that are very large that can breed on their own. I haven't had turkeys yet (next month ) so I can't help you with your other question.
Basically like raising a chicken or other fowl, but if you go with the non-broad breasted they can fly and they will. One turkey will eat as much as 3 turkeys put together. But other then that they are just like other poultry.
the one thing with broad brested is they never stop growing. we had one for christmas it was 34 lbs. Most heritage birds can take care of them selves so to speek mine will not go in for any reason. they like the pinetrees better no matter what the weather. three even went after an owl and won LOL
Everything you ever wanted to know about raising turkeys is right here on this BYC thread:
Quote:If you are looking for a quick meat turkey, raise and put in the freezer alot of people prefer the broad breasted types. We have raised Broad Breasted whites before and I will say I wasn't impressed. Sure they grew fast but... the taste just wasn't there for us, plus I will do alot for our birds but I draw the line at A/I. I have no interest in any breed of poultry that can't self reproduce.
We much prefer the heritage breeds and some of them can get close in size to the broad breasted and still self reproduce. The White Holland and Standard Bronze are two of the largest. They longer to grow out if you want to eat them, we like them about 10 months of age. But if you keep breeders you have turkeys for as long as you want them.
Turkey poults are more tender to raise than chickens for the first couple months but after that they are very easy. One thing to remember about turkeys is they can be very curious and friendly. That cute little poult that likes to sit on your lap will grow into a 20 or 30 pound tom that likes to do the same thing. It's not a problem but just something to remember that they grow to large and powerful birds. In all our years of raising turkeys we have only ever had one agressive Royal Palm tom all the rest are just as gentle as can be. We have some pics of breeds we raise on our website if you want to see what they look like.
Steve in NC
I love my turkeys. They are my favorite breed of all our birds. They're very interesting to watch. I have several turkeys that are friendly enough to pick up and hold and they will sit in my lap. The way I see it, a gobbler is no heavier than a 2 year old! My 25 year old daughter temporarily moved back home and said our turkeys were better entertainment than TV. If we make "gobble" noises at them or whistle with a toy flute, they always reply. You can actually have quite a conversation! We have found our dominant gobbler will raise motherless poults. We have also had our turkey hen hatch and raise guineas. Our turkeys have been excellent parents. Remember they cannot live in the same coop as chickens for sanitary reasons. They will become ill more easily than a chicken. In the last year we have dealt with pox and respiratory illness. I did not know vaccinations were available, but now that I do, I highly recommend vaccinating the babies to prevent illness. They are also very fragile when it comes to injury. Any strain to their neck can kill or permanently debilitate them. I have learned when the vet says "the prognosis is not good" to just not spend any money on x-rays or treatment, for they will die anyway. Overall our turkeys are very healthy and easy to care for. We feed them a combination of 3 grain scratch, layer pellets and catfood. They LOVE their catfood and watermelon. It is not good for them to sleep on the ground during cold weather. They need a roost and an enclosed area with a light for warmth. We have standard bronze, royal palms and bourban reds. All are excellent breeders. We always have plenty of turkeys. We do not eat our turkeys, so I cannot help with that area.
My hatchery says they naturaly breed them
Are you sure they are the broad-breasted variety then or just the Bronze?
Because if I remember correctly there is a standard Bronze, which breeds naturally, but any of the "broad-breasted" varieties have trouble breeding naturally. So just double check if they are broad-breasted Bronze or standard Bronze.
They are broad-breasted Bronze turkeys
but they are hatchery stock so who knows