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Desperate for answers/help

post #1 of 2
Thread Starter 
I'm raising a batch of Cornish X. Started with 50 and am at 7 weeks with only 27 and more potentially goon to die. They get a starter/grower feed with 18% protein and 3% fat. I've cut back their rations thinking they were eating too much, but with no improvement.
The hatchery says they are 'growing too fast' but at 7 weeks they are 1-2 pounds smaller than the growth chart says they should be.
Necropsy reveals heart failure. I need to know what I'm doing wrong. What can I do to keep my remaining flock healthy until butcher (the hatchery said feed them all they can eat for the next week but I'm afraid they will ALL die at that point). And if I'm doing everything 'right' should I ask the hatchery for a refund? They tried to make it sound like some loss is just to be expected, but 50% seems unreasonable to me.
Is there anyone who can help me figure this out?
post #2 of 2

I don't know what might be happening with your chicks, but I can tell you what we do with ours...and we've had good luck so far. I will also preface with saying that we bought ours from the local feed store and did not have them shipped from a hatchery. First of all, we end up feeding them turkey/game starter since it has a higher protein content than what our hens are eating. They seem to like it. They're growing quickly, but we take the feed out of the brooder at night. We leave them with water, but this slows their growth at least a little bit. We also let them out of the brooder to run around (if you have the room) at about 2 weeks. This gives them a little exercise and can help slow growth as well. I've also found that we have to keep the pen SUPER clean or they are very unhappy and start losing feathers on their underside which can then cause sores that get infected.

Poultry - 13 (+15 meat chickens who are unnamed)

2 Polish crosses - Elvis & Priscilla, 1 Dominique - Cruella, 1 light Brahma - Theo, 1 buff Brahma - Louise, 1 black Australorp - Bea, 2 blue laced red Wyandottes - Elsa & Lucy, 1 black sex-link - Ebony, 1 Barnevelder - Olive, 1 Welsummer - Harriet, 1 Bantam EE - Meredith, 1 Buff Orpington - Princess Buttercup

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Poultry - 13 (+15 meat chickens who are unnamed)

2 Polish crosses - Elvis & Priscilla, 1 Dominique - Cruella, 1 light Brahma - Theo, 1 buff Brahma - Louise, 1 black Australorp - Bea, 2 blue laced red Wyandottes - Elsa & Lucy, 1 black sex-link - Ebony, 1 Barnevelder - Olive, 1 Welsummer - Harriet, 1 Bantam EE - Meredith, 1 Buff Orpington - Princess Buttercup

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