When to butcher?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by JazminesZoo, Nov 20, 2011.

  1. JazminesZoo

    JazminesZoo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    What is the prime age to butcher ~ Turkey/Geese/Quail/Duck/Chicken/Guinea ~ Are different breeds really that variable ? I am looking at heritage breeds, not the fast growers.

    THANKS!!
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2011
  2. T-Amy

    T-Amy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The meat chicks I got from Meyers are supposed to be butchered at 7-8 weeks. Letting them grow any longer supposedly can lead to spontaneous heart failure. This is my first time so I can only tell you what their recommendations are. Do you have all of those types of birds?
     
  3. Fenika

    Fenika Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Guineas: 12-16 weeks (Specifically Jumbo/French, but it would apply to regular guineas too)
     
  4. JazminesZoo

    JazminesZoo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I will have or already have
    Bourbon Red Turkeys,
    Coturnix Quail,
    Maran Chickens,
    Sussex Chickens,
    Chukar Partridge
    Guinea Hens
    Cayuga Duck
    Barnevelder Chicken
    Buckeye Chicken

    [​IMG]
    Thanks
     
  5. Fenika

    Fenika Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Plan your slaughter times and days carefully if you are doing it yourself (with or without help). I've done 8 guineas solo and I was in pain after. An auto-plucker would help. Trying to pick a day to do the last 8 was difficult and almost had to be pushed back.

    If you are sending them to slaughter, have a back up plan- a second place or mobile butcher that can take your birds on fairly short notice.
     
  6. galanie

    galanie Treat Dispenser No More

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    Chickens, ducks, quail, turkeys, and partridge all have different optimum butcher times. And among chickens, it depends on the breed as well. I can't speak for the other types of poultry other than quail, which are considered good to eat starting when they're fully grown. And even that depends on what breed.

    Your chickens will be good any time after around 16 weeks. Just look and think, "ok, they're big enough" then do it. Coturnix quail, any time after around 6 weeks.
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2011
  7. peterlund

    peterlund Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Check out the times that your ducks have pin feathers... They are a pain to remove but most butchers would suggest waiting an extra 2 weeks or so to avois the fuss. Not sure of the quail etc, but it looks like you have quite the assortment of critters... Good luck!
     

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