Which heritage breed...?

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by pascopol, Oct 29, 2010.

  1. pascopol

    pascopol Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Are there any preferred heritage turkeys for tasty homegrown special Thanksgiving Dinner?

    Fast growing, decent size (by Thanksgiving anyway) but not too large, decent resistance to deceases?

    I want to raise some next spring. I raised turkeys once some years ago, they were Bourbon Reds and Royal Palms.

    I liked them both however Bourbons grew larger.

    How about Black Spanish? How they compare to others above?
     
  2. Lotsapaints

    Lotsapaints Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 17, 2010
    Paso Robles, CA
    Midget Whites....easier to keep home finish out at a nice weight that's not too large for your oven love mine they are spoiled and laying eggs right now eating the smallest Tom and raising more for next year.
     
  3. pascopol

    pascopol Chillin' With My Peeps

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    How many weeks it takes to raise them to usable weight?

    Do they lay year around?
     
  4. PatS

    PatS Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Northern Califonia
    I grew Midget Whites and Bourbon Reds this year. The two breeds are usually at the top of the "taste tests." There are just two of us, so the MWs are just the right size... I'd give them 6 months, minimum.
     
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2010
  5. Tunastopper

    Tunastopper Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I think Buffs are great and rare. They are like a Bourbon Reds but on a black base rather than bronze base with two red genes. They make a pretty carcase due to the light colored feathers. They are harder to find than BR or MW that have become common hatchery birds.

    I don't think of any of the heritage turkeys as being to big. I personally like them best when they are older than a year.
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2010
  6. Tunastopper

    Tunastopper Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have only seen one taste test where MW and BR where at the top. Looks played a huge part of the judging from what I read. It was not taste alone. They is much written on this but only one taste test that I could find. If anyone knows of more then one let me know.
     
  7. Steve_of_sandspoultry

    Steve_of_sandspoultry Overrun With Chickens

    We raise 6 different color varietes, Midget White, Beltsville Small White, White Holland, Bourbon Red, Royal Palm and Standard Bronze.

    By size

    The Midget and Beltsville are about the same Toms right at 20 pounds, hens 10 to 12
    Palms are a little bigger by a few pounds
    Bourbon Reds, toms around 30 hens high teens
    The Bronze and Holland are the largest toms high 30's and hens in the low 20's

    Taste wise the Midgets and Bourbon are on top followed by the Palm for us

    You want at least 6 months grow out time for Thanksgiving.

    Steve
     
  8. pascopol

    pascopol Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for info, very nice and informative website!

    When you start shipping Turkey eggs?
     
  9. Steve_of_sandspoultry

    Steve_of_sandspoultry Overrun With Chickens

    Quote:Last year the Beltsvilles started laying in Jan followed by the Midgets and Hollands, next were the Palms and Bourbons last were the bronze. Are you looking for one variety or a mix for your own taste test? We can ship early since they are heading south and that will give you more grow out time.

    Steve
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2010
  10. longranger

    longranger Chillin' With My Peeps

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    laguna hills CA
    Hey Steve,

    Starting to think I have an insensitive palate. I cannot say I taste any real differences between different heritage varieties raised with the same feed, butchered at the same age etc.. At first I thought I did but probably just talked myself into it because everyone said this or that. No doubt about the difference in flavor compared to broad breasted. Also no doubt in size variation both between varieties and from different bloodlines with the same feather patterns. Good news is that all the heritage birds have been delicious. Have never tried your MW line but may try some eggs this year.

    Have been picking breeding stock now on looks and vigor followed by temperament. So far the Bronze are by far the most mellow and the Bourbons most in my face curious.

    Back to the initial question find a heritage breed you enjoy, raise them well and they all will make for excellent table fare
     

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