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Author Topic: Young marans cockerel too young? ....Update  (Read 2123 times)

Mammyshaz

  • Joined Feb 2012
  • Durham
Young marans cockerel too young? ....Update
« on: July 28, 2014, 09:09:55 pm »
We hatched some marans eggs on 2nd may making them 12 weeks on Friday. One copper blue has been crowing since 6weeks old and is in full vocal crow now.
The neighbours are being sympathetic but as cockerels are not permitted he will need to go sooner rather than later before complaints are made.

 we don't buy meat unless we know exactly where it is coming from and our only source of chicken is our own yearly reared batch this being our second lot. My dilemma is will he have enough meat now at 12 weeks or should I try to push the neighbours' patience another few week?

What are other's experiences of marans cockerel carcass with regards to their age?
« Last Edit: August 07, 2014, 12:01:40 am by Mammyshaz »
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HesterF

  • Joined Jul 2012
  • Kent
  • HesterF
Re: Young marans cockerel too young?
« Reply #1 on: July 28, 2014, 09:56:09 pm »
I sold on a Marans cockerel at the end of last year who would have been twice that age and the breeder I sold to said he still felt light. Mind you, she also said they go through stages - referring to Orpingtons she said 9 weeks or so was a good time to eat them. Clearly much smaller but meaty and then they go through a growth spurt and get all scraggy again until they bulk out a bit more. So the best test is probably just to pick him up and judge density/chest bone protruberance.

Stereo

  • Joined Aug 2012
Re: Young marans cockerel too young?
« Reply #2 on: July 30, 2014, 12:10:29 pm »
We've done them at 18 and 34 weeks and didn't really notice much difference to be honest. Maybe give them a nice lot of corn to add some fat. There will be meat on them but 12 weeks seems a little young to me. I learnt to dispatch and process on Hubbards and they were still 'peeping' when I dispatched them which I wasn't happy about. If they are crowing / trying to kill / have sex with everything then it's easier to justify in my view. We have some copper blacks and one of them was a full size cockerel by 12 weeks and crowing which I thought was amazing but crowing at 6 weeks obviously tops that.

Out of interest, if you had that bird, would you breed from him? His colouring isn't perfect but I'm thinking that if he passes on the early maturing bit, that may be very useful. His brothers are now the same size and one has perfect feathering so I'm not sure whether to keep one, none or both.

mentalmilly

  • Joined Nov 2012
Re: Young marans cockerel too young?
« Reply #3 on: July 30, 2014, 02:24:13 pm »
We had one at 12 weeks crowing and being a general pain with the hens. He had to go and l was surprised that he made a meal for 3 people at that age.  He didnt seem that big feathered.

Mammyshaz

  • Joined Feb 2012
  • Durham
Re: Young marans cockerel too young?
« Reply #4 on: July 31, 2014, 08:06:08 am »
Thanks all.
 Six weeks seemed just wrong! But he is bigger and more mature looking than the rest. Great big ruby red comb and wattles  :o and very stumpy feet if you are too close to the fence! One other attempts to crow and the other three haven't even started yet but they all look so scrawny compared to him even the ones that are taller haven't got the width like he has. He is followed by all the girls but hasn't tried anything with them ....yet.... so maybe not as mature as he thinks  ;D

Perhaps he will give us a meal like yours MM. I'm biding time still, will give more mixed corn daily along with the growers to try putting more weight on him.  A soundproof coop really would come in handy at 5am!!

Mammyshaz

  • Joined Feb 2012
  • Durham
Re: Young marans cockerel too young? ....Update
« Reply #5 on: August 07, 2014, 12:22:19 am »
We had a bit of a hiccup yesterday.
We have bided time as he doesnt seem very meaty despite being heavy. His chest and legs are big but bony.
He is in full crow at 4 am and sets off squawky shouts from the neighbouring hens as well as our main flock but we thought we could fatten him a bit more. Until his RAPTOR attack that is  :rant:

My 6 yr old boy has almost daily gone in the chick area with fresh leaves to feed them by hand. If any nonsense or stampy feet he just picked the naughty male up until they settled ( young and fearless is a great way to be innocent ).
Yesterday said top male of 13 weeks took a total dislike to son, chased him around the trees wings flapping and legs kicking and finally dived at his head luckily missing, but latching slightly lower onto his Tshirt  :o he was like a Pterodactyl attacking  :tired:  Me outside the enclosure stupidly running back and forth still holding buckets shouting 'turn and run at him, turn and run at him, pick him up!' as if he could  ::)

He did , bless him, and escaped unharmed . But said cockerel had to go sooner rather than later. He was too big for his boots! So the deed has been done  :'(

Alas the great Pterodactyl who thought himself SO big has turned out to be an all-feather anorexic sparrow!! More feather and flamboyance than muscle and meat

Oh well,  let's hope the other males mature at a more steady rate for a meal  rather than a toothpick  :fc:

 

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