sorry this will be long. My first cornish crosses. I don't need the best feed: meat ratio. I would rather let them get bigger and get more meat out of each bird bec for me the hardest part is the processing. [ I have done some in the past, and am getting better, but it's still something i have to work myself up to do]. I plan on processing them on separate days [for freezer space reasons and wanting to see how big they can get]. I had initially planned for those days to be this week and then some time early Nov. 16 straight run CX. Looking at the feathers the day they arrived, I thought i had 8 each boys/ girls. After a few days it looked like 7 boys 9 girls. I caponized 6 of them at 3 weeks old. I didn't withhold water at all before the surgery, but did withhold food about 18 hours prior. Intentionally left 1 large boy for comparison. I have read that it's not worth caponizing cornish crosses as the testosterone doesn't cause any disadvantages since they are processed so young, but knowing i'm going to let them get older than 6-8 weeks I figured i'd do 6 and see how they fared. So far, what i read holds true as the one i left intact is at least pound heavier than the next biggest bird. There are two obvious roosters: large red comb and wattles. I don' t know if the second "rooster " is a slip or if I had 8 boys. I'll find out when he gets processed. Some others are starting to get larger combs, but they are still pale, so I guess most of the surgeries were a success. Had 2 broody egglayers raise them, so they grew up with and are now housed with my 9 egglayers. They get fed [fermented feed] as much as they can eat twice daily, 3 times on weekends, and root around in their pen for the rest of the day. [ well,they can,but they spend most of the day resting] they are now 9 weeks old. the big boy is just over 8 lbs [ 8lb 2 ounces] 3 of the average ones are just over 7 lbs, a few are definitely smaller. [They were hard to weigh on my small kitchen scale. I should borrow a real scale from my neighbor]. I've already decided the big guy gets to live until the last ones are processed or he starts causing problems. I do want to see how big he'll get. They are all getting along and the increased time cleaning isn't overwhelming, so i can give them all more time to grow bigger and develop flavor. I was expecting to process the smaller birds first, with the reasoning that they will be the girls and they won't ever get as big as the boys. But all their legs still seem so big? about what weight do they top out?? or at what age does their growth slow down??? Looking at them now I am considering waiting until the end of the month before doing any. Also, do runts ever catch up? that other obvious male is one of the smaller ones. If i go by current size alone he's going with the first group, but is that a waste of potential? I guess i should weigh everybody before the morning feeding one day each week and see how much progress they make to help decide. Any opinions on who goes to freezer camp and when???