60 Layers and 25 Broilers

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by flockeeper, Jul 17, 2016.

  1. flockeeper

    flockeeper Out Of The Brooder

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    Next month we are getting 60 laying hens and 25 meat chickens. Is it okay to raise them together for the first four weeks? Does anyone have experience with this?
     
  2. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener True BYC Addict

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    Are the meaties cornish x rocks? If so, it will take some finesse to manage it without the larger birds pig piling and suffocating the smaller pullets. The biggest risk when brooding larger groups of birds is the pig pile. If they get scared, or the outer ring of birds gets chilled, they will pile up, suffocating the smaller ones at the bottom. If you are able to keep a calm brooder, and provide enough heat AND cool space, it might work. I'd recommend using several lamps, and a very large brooder. Is this your first flock? If so, you could brood them in your coop. I think I'd be tempted to brood the meaties and layers separate but in same area in your case.
     
  3. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    I hope you have a huge brooding area...I assume you are getting day old chicks?
    What is your climate? Putting your location in your profile can help folks give better answer/suggestions.

    CX and layers chicks can do OK together for the first week or so, the layers can actually invigorate the CX to move more...but once the CX get larger the size difference can be a problem as stated above.

    The setup of brooder/coop can make a big difference.....
    .......more info and pics of setup can help us help you.
     
  4. flockeeper

    flockeeper Out Of The Brooder

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    I have one side of my chicken house set aside for raising chicks. This will be my 7th batch of chickens to raise. Some meat and some layers but never together. This batch is Cornish Cross and Isa Browns. Yes, we are getting day old chicks. I live in northern Indiana.

    I can adjust the size of their brooder, because for every new batch I create an enclosure within the empty side of the chicken house. The enclosure is made of cardboard boxes taken apart at the side and sewn together with yarn. The size depends on how many boxes I sew together. I have a heat lamp box that has the capacity for 3 heat lamps spaced about 1 foot apart, which gets hung above them.

    My thought, drawn from your comments, is to have plenty of feeder and water space for them, if I raise them together. What do you think? Do you need more information on my setup?
     
  5. CluckerCottage

    CluckerCottage Chillin' With My Peeps

    The first time I raised CX chicks with layer chicks, it was fine for a few weeks.
    After that, the CX's were pretty well mutilated by the layers. They pecked their large red butts bloody, it was truly horrible.
    I separated them immediately and thank God the meaties healed up just fine.
    Lesson learned that day! I never raise them together now. I have 3 separate areas for my birds.
    Mature coop/run, CX coop/run,/egg layer pullets/run. Best wishes!
     
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    How big (feet by feet) can you access by 8 weeks for all the chicks?
    Will they have outside are to access also?
    I assume you will butcher CX by 8 weeks.
    Ho big is the entire chicken house(feet by feet)?
    How many other birds do you have at this time?
     
  7. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener True BYC Addict

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    Bee kissed has raised CXR and layers together with good results. She limited feed for CXR's and she turned them out to range right along with the layers. As I recall, their butts were well feathered, and they were quite active.
     
  8. flockeeper

    flockeeper Out Of The Brooder

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    I would only be raising the meat chickens and layer chickens together for 4 weeks. At that point they would be separated; the meat chickens would get moved outside. We plan on butchering the meat chickens between 8-10 weeks depending on our schedule and their size. I'm not sure the exact size of the chicken house. It's divided into two parts: one for the already-established layers and one that's kept empty until we need it for new chicks. I've raised a little over 90 chicks comfortably, in the empty side meant for starting chicks, for the first 4 weeks of their lives.
     
  9. Chickerdoodle13

    Chickerdoodle13 The truth is out there...

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    They may be ok together for a few weeks but the Cornish crosses will quickly outgrow the Isa Browns and they will most likely need to be separated at that point. If you have a very large brooder area with plenty of feed, it may be ok. If it were me, I might consider keeping them separate.
     
  10. flockeeper

    flockeeper Out Of The Brooder

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    Thank you all for your advice and input. What I'll plan on is raising them together for the first 4 weeks, with plenty of feeder, water, and floor space. After which I'll separate them. The broilers will be moved outside to chicken tractors. And the layers will eventually replace our old layers.
     

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