BREEDING FOR PRODUCTION...EGGS AND OR MEAT.

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by hellbender, Dec 27, 2013.

  1. Don't get me started on our weather! [​IMG] I believe Our Roost, Beer Can & I, all share similar weather patterns. I think a move down south when hubby retires, is in order! Got a shovel Linda? I suspect it will all melt soon enough. [​IMG] Glad your birds are fine & good luck with your hatch! [​IMG]
     

  2. Heron's Nest Farm

    Heron's Nest Farm Songster

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    I will be watching this project. My customers love brown eggs and larger ones would be nice. My Dominique lays 5 dark brown eggs a week. They are almost large but not quite. She also lays through the winter. I have orps and black stars, but I'm moving to RIRs instead of stars. I have to admit I have a a little different egg market here. We are nature junkies in Oregon, so using heritage breeds, organic soy free food and ranging them is what my people want. I don't need consistent egg size. Folks like to feel connected to the food and a part of the story. Eggs sell for $7-9 a doz in the stores here. I wholesale for $5.

    I am eagerly awaiting my Maran x Americanas to lay and will post when I get an egg. Any day now! Combs are darkening. I disagree with you somewhat on your AMericana comment. I find that they are 5 a week layers and they lay throughout the winter. ALso I have noticed that they are quick to mature and great at foraging if that counts in your book. I will say that I think the special joy of the customer makes their less productivity well worth it! I am excited to see what your leghorn addition does. THAT WOULD BE WORTH COPYING IF IT INDEED WORKs!!!!! Funny thing.
    I add a little chick starter to my birds feed when breeding. I like to start this 2 weeks before collecting eggs, but I admit I sometimes fall off in this area. I also give extra eggs hard boiled and any leftover raw milk which activates the GI tract and is full of protein. All protein based scraps go to my breeders, but I skip the carby stuff like old bread. Anyone else want to chime in on this?

    Funny thing: I added white egg layers this year to complete the color spectrum in my dozens! I have black minorcas out there growing. I noticed they are slow maturing but the best foraging chicks! Anyone have experience with these?
     
  3. Beekissed

    Beekissed Free Ranging

    You can weigh a box, adjust the scale to 0 with it still on there(some people even attach a box to the scale plate), then place your bird~safely trussed to decrease movement~in the box and get an accurate weight.
     



  4. [COLOR=FF0000]I add a little chick starter to my birds feed when breeding.  I like to start this 2 weeks before collecting eggs, but I admit I sometimes fall off in this area.  I also give extra eggs hard boiled and any leftover raw milk which activates the GI tract and is full of protein.  All protein based scraps go to my breeders, but I skip the carby stuff like old bread. Anyone else want to chime in on this?[/COLOR]

    Ok, pretty much any extra protein here from the kitchen, goes to them. Particularly extra scrambled or hard boiled eggs too. [​IMG]


    Yes, I'm imagining doing it this way. :) Thanks!
     
  5. Beekissed

    Beekissed Free Ranging

    The OT breeders recommend increasing meat proteins prior to and during breeding season....raw meat, even. This year I ground up all the bones, gristle, meat fragments, fat, some organ meats, etc. left over from making chicken stock and froze it, to be fed out during breeding season. A little feather of the bird, so to speak..... Should make for strong shells and healthy chicks.
     
    3 people like this.
  6. Beer can

    Beer can Free Ranging

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    Just my opinion I've never been a breeder or been in the egg business. RIR are by far the best egg layers I've ever had, and I've had sex links and g comets, never on a large scale and it probably depends on what hatchery you get them from on how good they are. I had fifteen RIR probably production ones. Now I never egg trapped and tracked them by the way so I might be exaggerating a little, don't know for sure. When they started laying I got fifteen eggs a day every day for over a year, even everyday in subzero cold winter, no heat in a drafty old barn, with a light above their water to keep it thawed out. Very hardy birds, never got sick, never wormed them (never even heard of worming chickens at the time). Only feed them layer pellets, no supplements, no oyster shells and always had good eggs. They laid for over a year before they molted and then took turns so there was always plenty of eggs. They tapered off about the third year and we were moving so they ended up in the freezer. I can't see how any breed of chicken could do better than that, be they a hybrid or a leghorn.
    Dark brown eggs? Welsummers lay more than Marans and they are darker than other brown layers, and have cool dark spots.
     
  7. Beer can

    Beer can Free Ranging

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    I hope to become a breeder though of the most inefficient chickens out there, white jersey giants and black and blue langshans. Might spend tons feeding them but I hope to breed the jgiants to the biggest darn capons out there. And hopefully help preserve a breed that no one seems to care about or want anymore.
     

  8. Same here, just raising what we need for our needs. RIRs were my first pure birds (breeder's culls) I acquired after a fox got all but one of my production hybrids. I can relate to a lot that you've said about them. A good breed without a lot of fuss! [​IMG] They were very hardy indeed & I didn't know about worming back then. Good hens that laid well & I believe through winter too. I even had one go broody once & she was a great mom. The winters these last few years have been unexpectedly frigid for this region, so I don't find large, single combs as appealing anymore. Rose comb RIRs are nowhere around here or I might consider them in my project. Colored eggs were fun in the past, but now I just want to be practical. Had my fun experimenting with mixing various hatchery stock in the past, now I just need to get serious with Malines & future Buckeyes.

    Good luck with the white jersey giants & black & blue langshans! Sounds like a tall order! [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2015
  9. Sounds good! Wish I had a good meat grinder...going on the wish list. ;)
     
  10. hellbender

    hellbender Crowing

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    Grinder's Switch
    A meat grinder is invaluable when preparing feed for chickens...IMHO.
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2015
    1 person likes this.

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