100 Broilers and Fermented Feed Project

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by kuntrygirl, Oct 18, 2013.

  1. kuntrygirl

    kuntrygirl Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

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    I just orderd 100 broilers and they are scehduled to arrive in January 2014. I have a few questions for anyone who has had 100 broilers at one time. Can you tell me how were they housed? Were they in movable tractors? If so, how big was the tractor (measurements)? How much area is needed per chick in a chicken tractor? How much feed did they consume each week? At what age did you process them? What was the average weights of the broilers? How many did you lose before process time?

    I would love to hear your stories with a large number of broilers at one single time.
     
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  2. journey11

    journey11 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Most I've done in one batch has been 45, but I think I can answer most of your questions. Here's a link to a blog post I wrote on a batch I did a couple years ago, with a spreadsheet of all my numbers and how things worked out.

    Can you tell me how were they housed? Were they in movable tractors?

    I prefer to tractor mine on pasture. I think it's better for their health. They poo sooooo much. It doesn't take long before they're wading in it if you don't have a pen you can move daily.

    If so, how big was the tractor (measurements)?

    My tractor is 8X8. Here's a pic of it where you can see the set up.

    How much area is needed per chick in a chicken tractor?

    They say you can put up to 90 CX in a tractor that size. They don't move around as much as normal chickens and they don't pick on each other like normal chickens do either. However, unless you want to have to move your tractor a couple times a day (the poo issue), I don't think I'd put that many in there. Most I would put in mine would probably be 50. I've got 31 in my tractor currently and they have plenty of room.

    How much feed did they consume each week?

    On Dumor 24% turkey chick feed up to age 4 weeks and Dumor 20% chick feed to finish, mine consumed 17.84 lbs of feed each on average. Your management practices can greatly effect that though. These were also tractored on pasture.

    At what age did you process them?

    7 weeks old for the males, 9 weeks old for the females. If you go much past 11 weeks the risk of heart and leg problems increases drastically.

    What was the average weights of the broilers?

    I only weighed 3 of mine live out of curiosity. They were between 8 and 9 pounds live. I weighed all of them after processing and the average weight I got was 4.92 lbs dressed out.

    How many did you lose before process time?

    For the first 3 years I had raised them, I lost about 2 or 3 chicks each time, all under 2 weeks of age. This year I've got them on an entirely different feed, a locally sourced whole/cracked grain feed. I haven't lost any this year and haven't had any heart or leg problems with these. Prior to that, I also would have maybe 1 or 2 with leg problems that still made it to processing, but weren't as large as the others.

    Hope that gives you some idea what to expect. At least you've got a couple of months to work out all the details. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2013
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  3. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    My question is.......how much freezer space do you have? or are a lot of them going elsewhere?
     
  4. PotterWatch

    PotterWatch My Patronus is a Chicken

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    Can you tell me how were they housed? Were they in movable tractors?

    We usually did batches around 100-125 each. They were all in the same brooder until 3wks old (8x8), and then we split them into two groups of 50-60 and put them in tractors out on pasture. Our tractors were 10x10 and had about 24ft of trough feeders and one bell waterer that was hooked up to two 5gallon buckets. In the heat of the summer, we had to fill the buckets twice a day. They got fed and moved once per day.


    How much feed did they consume each week?

    Ours were on a 22% organic starter/grower their whole lives and went through about 16.5 lbs per bird over the course of 8wks.


    At what age did you process them?

    8 weeks.


    What was the average weights of the broilers?

    No idea on live weight, but dressed weight was an average of 5lbs.


    How many did you lose before process time?

    Some batches we lost more than others. Some batches just seemed weaker for some unknown reason. Overall, we lost around 5%.
     
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  5. kuntrygirl

    kuntrygirl Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

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    All I can say is "WOW"!!! Thank you very much for the detailed responses. I LOVE LOVE LOVE your chicken tractor.!!! That would work perfect for me and the area I plan on putting them.

    It sounds like everthing worked out great for you. I appreciate you taking the time to answer all of my questions. I will use your info to help me with my broiler project. :thumbsup
     
  6. kuntrygirl

    kuntrygirl Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

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    I am buying another freezer. I also have ducks, turkeys and lamb to process and freeze, so I need more room. But I plan on giving away about 25 or so broilers to family and friends.
     
  7. kuntrygirl

    kuntrygirl Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

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    That's a lot of birds. WOW! How long did it take you to process them? Do you have pics of your tractor? How much money would you say that you spent on feed duing the entire time of you having the broilers?

    What did you do with all of the broilers after processing them? Did you freeze all of them for your family or did you give some away?

    On the broilers that you lost, did you process them or did you just dispose of their bodies?
     
  8. PotterWatch

    PotterWatch My Patronus is a Chicken

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    We spent $11-$12 on feed per bird but when you figure the feed lost on birds that died before processing day, each dressed bird cost about $13 in feed plus another $.75 for packaging and then about $.25 in bedding and electricity in the brooder. Basically, our cost per bird averaged out to around $14 before we paid ourselves for our time. We sold ours for $5/lb or an average of $25 per bird (farming meat animals is our full-time business).

    We usually had about 400 birds on the property at any given time ranging from day old chicks to birds ready for processing. With one person doing the killing, scalding, plucking; and two people doing cleaning, we got through 100 birds in about 6 hours with another 30-40 minutes to package.

    If we saw a bird 5 weeks or older that was having heart trouble, we usually tried to process them. Younger than that, we didn't bother processing them if they were going downhill. Any birds that died before processing were disposed of or fed to dogs.
     
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  9. Buster52

    Buster52 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It would be interesting to see how you hooked them together. I am running about 45 birds right now and a 5 gallon bucket with a bell waterer isn't nearly enough.
     
  10. kuntrygirl

    kuntrygirl Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

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    Great information. I am learning alot. Thank you very much for your input. I am enjoying the conversation here about broilers from everyone.
     

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