Broad Breasted Bronze Turkey Poults

Broad Breasted Bronze Turkey Poults
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Day Old Broad Breasted Bronze Turkey Poults

Hatching February through June

Can also be found as part of the Happy Homestead Special

The Broad Breasted Bronze Turkey is an excellent choice if you want to raise a turkey for meat. Due to years of being bred specifically for meat quality, these birds grow quickly and provide nice plump carcasses.

Production
For a short time, the Broad Breasted Bronze Turkey dominated the commercially-sold turkey market. Consumer appeal rules all, though, and over time, processors began to prefer the Broad Breasted White Turkey, saying it provided a cleaner-looking carcass. Today, the Broad Breasted Bronze Turkey is raised mostly for small-scale, seasonal purposes.

History
Until quite recently in American History, the Broad Breasted Bronze Turkey was the most desirable turkey for the table. The breed originated when European settlers bred the turkeys they brought to North America with the native turkeys they found here. The hybrid they produced was a superior animal, being more vigorous and bigger than the European birds but tamer than the North American natives.

The coppery coloring of these turkeys gave them their name, but they were not officially called Bronze Breasted Turkeys until the 1800s. Shortly thereafter, in 1874, the American Poultry Association officially recognized the Bronze turkey breed. Since that time, the breed has undergone dramatic changes, as commercial farmers began to introduce different strains to produce turkeys with broader breasts and shorter keels and that would grow faster.

Commercial farmers continued to refine the breed, improving the quality of the meat, particularly the breast meat. The changes have ended the Broad Breasted Bronze Turkeys' ability to mate naturally. Since the 1960s they have been artificially inseminated. If you are interested in breeding turkeys, you may be interested in looking at our heritage breeds.

Colors
In the case of the Broad Breasted Bronze Turkey, the name offers a clue as to the birds' color. This breed has predominately dark feathers, which have a coppery sheen. The copper color is from an inheritance from the breeds' wild ancestors.

Status
Because this breed must be artificially inseminated to reproduce, Broad Breasted Bronze turkeys are not bred by individuals. Instead, the majority of them are raised by commercial farmers on a seasonal basis. Some families will buy Broad Breasted Bronzes to raise for meat, but otherwise, production is confined to the commercial realm.

Body Type
Broad Breasted Turkeys are compact meat birds and have been bred to have very large breasts.

Weight
Hens weigh 14-20 lbs. at 14-20 weeks and Toms weigh 30-40 lbs. at 20-24 weeks.

Classification
American Poultry Association Class: Not standardized
Livestock Conservancy Status - Study

 

Broad Breasted Turkey Feed Conversions
Weeks of Age
Tom Weight
Hen Weight
Total Feed (Tom)
Total Feed (Hen)
2
0.9 lbs
0.8 lbs
1.2 lbs
1 lbs
4
2.8 lbs
2.4 lbs
4.4 lbs
3.6 lbs
6
6.2 lbs
5  lbs
10.3  lbs
8.1  lbs
8
10.6  lbs
8.4  lbs
19.1  lbs
14.6  lbs
10
15.7  lbs
12.1  lbs
30.5  lbs
22.9  lbs
12
21.2  lbs
15.9  lbs
44.3  lbs
32.6  lbs
14
26.8  lbs
19.6  lbs
60.2  lbs
43.7  lbs
16
32.5  lbs
23  lbs
77.9  lbs
55.8  lbs
18
38  lbs
26.1  lbs
97.4  lbs
68.8  lbs
20
43.3  lbs
28.9  lbs
118.8  lbs
82.7  lbs
22
48.4  lbs
N/A
142.2  lbs
N/A
24
53.38  lbs
N/A
167.8  lbs
N/A

The above numbers are only averages and estimations.  Results may vary from flock to flock.

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