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Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Our experience with Dark Cornish Meat birds

 We have had laying hens for a few years and this year we decide to try some meat birds.  Not being into fast food we purchased Dark Cornish Chicks instead of the White Cornish most that is purchased in the store.  This is a picture of the hens and roo's plus a Maran rooster who thinks he is a Dark Cornish.    The verdict isn't totally out yet but we have not been as pleased with these birds as we thought we would be. 

For one, it has taken them 5 months to get to the size you see in the picture.  We have butchered and few along the way and had some yummy roast chicken but the food to weight ratio has not been good.  They are however, exceptional foragers and can be seen ranging far and wide on the farm in search of their meal.  The Hens are starting to lay and the yolks are a really dark burnt orange color which we really like to see since it tells us that there are a lot of omegas and nutrients in these yolks.  That is plus but I am waiting to see how they lay.

I would not purchase these birds again for meat but maybe for the foraging ability and nice egg quality I might consider keeping a few.  We will probably just stick to the extra roosters we get from hatching out the laying hens each year.  They grow much faster and are ready to butcher sooner.
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