Take the temp in the thickest part of the meat. Minimum internal temp should be 165 degrees. At that temp it is "done" but some prefer a higher temperature. I usually go to 167 to make sure it is done.
The question arose in a discussion with a fellow smoker last night over a couple wobbly pops... 165 is enough cooking for poultry (this we could agree upon) but what about smoker temp. In my opinon, too low could keep the meat at a dangerous temperature for too long. What do you guys think?
Rivet: the 180 degree internal temp is what the USDA "use to" say was the safe temp for poultry. They have since revised their recommendations as studies have shown that harmful food borne bacteria are killed off at 165 degrees. Some prefer their poultry served at a higher temp but there is no reason to go that high for food safety concerns.
The USDA recommendation is no longer then 4 hours between the temps of 40 -140 degrees. That is the temp range where food borne bacteria rapidly multiply. A little over 4 hours isn't going to make you sick but try to keep within that time frame.
You are correct Ron. The regulation has changed and if you handle the poultry appropriately (before, during and after cooking) there should be no worries about food borne bacteria. It is just that I'm a stickler for well done bird...strangely, I like my beef rare. Oh well, and thanks for the honesty check!