When to cull, and how?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by courtshep, Jul 11, 2008.

  1. courtshep

    courtshep Songster

    Jun 24, 2008
    West Virginia
    I hate to ask this, but when I ordered chicks it just never occured to me that I may have to cull some. In fact, I didn't even know what that meant!! So when you discover you have too many roosters, when do you do "IT"? Do you wait until they are big and then, gulp, EAT them?? At this point, it is really hard for me to imagine. My chicks are 1 month old. Some of the five Aracauna girls I ordered are looking suspiciously MALE. Oh well, I think that I am a big chicken, as well!! Thanks for all advice.[​IMG]
  2. Eggseronious

    Eggseronious Songster

    Mar 6, 2008
    East Tennessee
    Go ahead and grow them all out and eat the culls. The more you cull the faster the quality of the flock will improve.
  3. courtshep

    courtshep Songster

    Jun 24, 2008
    West Virginia
    Thank you for advice!! They are all so cute now, and I know I am being a baby about it. Maybe I'll become a vegetarian:p
  4. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

    Mar 12, 2008
    Loxahatchee, Florida
    Depending on what your plans are for your flock, you might want to keep your nicest, most mannerly roo to be a husband for your hens. But too many roos in a flock can be a problem, they can fight & fuss and make too much noise. Though that can be a problem, it also makes it easier to go through with processing them!

    You should decide now whether or not you're going to keep any roos if you get them, and what you'll do with any extras. It helps if you get the mindset early that some of them might be meat, before you start giving them names and knitting them sweaters.

    Some people take their birds to a processor, if they have one in their neighborhood, others just give/sell their extra roos to other folks who will eat them theirselves.

    It's not that bad of a deal to process them yourself, especially if you have someone who could show you how personally.

    Just remember, you aren't going to eat them while they're cute.
  5. robinaggie

    robinaggie Flew the Coop

    May 25, 2008
    It helps if you get the mindset early that some of them might be meat, before you start giving them names and knitting them sweaters.

    Even if you find homes for the roos, they are likely to be meat. I had to accept that when I decided to hatch.​
  6. WestKnollAmy

    WestKnollAmy The Crazy Chicken Lady

    Apr 22, 2008
    upstate SC
    Oh, yeah. Hard thing to do but as our 2 month olds have proven to have extra roos then we don't pet them at all and if we do have to deal with them just turn our mind off to the fact that they have any personality.
    Of course, it is getting easier to think of them in the freezer because as they grow and are thinking of puberty they are obnoxious! Depending on the breed, as we have several, we are going to start putting them in the freezer when cold weather hits, like Oct. We will be doing the work outside and won't have to fight flies, bees or the sweltering heat.
    Also to help us along we are studying the posts on slaughtering. We haven't found a processing plant near us that does chickens, only pork and beef. It helps that we were raised doing this, as well.
    Selling them even now might help while they are still little and cute but chancy since it can be hard to tell what is a roo and what isn't in some breeds.
  7. Beekissed

    Beekissed Free Ranging

    The first roosters I processed were given to me by my sister and were way too old, really. I crockpotted them and they were still dry and stringy. I had killed them and slapped them in the freezer. The second batch were about 12 weeks old and I let them chill a few days in the fridge before freezing. I barbequed them for a party and they were fantastic!!! Tender and tastey like no store bought chicken could ever be. Folks at the party were amazed and took all the left overs home.....I didn't get any! [​IMG] You'll get to where you like having those extra roosters, just so you have an excuse to eat some of your own chickens.
  8. purr

    purr Songster

    Apr 30, 2008
    east freetown, ma
    I am keeping quite a few of my Roo's cause I have quite a few couples. So I'm going to build a bachelor coop for those that have a mate, and a breeding coop for when I put the pair together .DH doesn't know this yet . He's still working on the regular coop. But for some reason McMurray sent me an extra Delaware Roo, considering these are good sized birds we will be culling the most obnoxious one and eating it.

    Alot of mine are banties and hardly more than a mouthful.You could also try your local auction if they are interesting breeds someone might want one for a Roo for their flock.
  9. courtshep

    courtshep Songster

    Jun 24, 2008
    West Virginia
    You guys are great...thanks so much. And beekissed, the cow is HILARIOUS!! My kids love it! Also, the two Araucanas that I think are roos have started fighting - just today! What is up with that?? So, I did not think that was too cute. My hubby's to do list is to make a bigger brooder. My coop is not ready yet, and I think they need more room. We have a left-over rabbit cage that someone made, and it just needs minor adjustments. Then on to the big coop. I want a really fancy job, but hubby thinks more "inside the box" when it comes to coops. But, on another note - to cull them do you always just chop the heads off? YUCKY.
  10. Davaroo

    Davaroo Poultry Crank

    Feb 4, 2007
    Leesville, SC
    Keep in mind the word CULL does not have to mean "kill."
    Traditionally it has, and the more Spartan among us will use it that way. I consider it this way.

    But you can also rehome them, if whacking them is not your forte.

    Me, I rehome them to Hispanics. That way I get rid of them, the new owners are happy to get them and they end up in the stewpot eventually, but they feed many more than at my house. It's a win all around.

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