Changing our methodology this year!

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by Lelilamom, May 6, 2016.

  1. Lelilamom

    Lelilamom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 28, 2013
    This is our 5th year raising broilers and we're changing it up! We're raising 30 Cornish Xs again and this year we will have them in bottomless tractors as opposed to screened-bottom tractors. We purchased a movable electric fence to ward off predators. The tractors are only 2' high instead of 4, and since they are bottomless, we can pick them up to move them, so no wheels. They measure 2x4x8' and we have two of them. We have a tarp canopy to go over them for shade/rain protection. We're hoping for even healthier birds since they'll be on grass and won't be on mesh (or mess since the mesh caught all their droppings!)

    The birds arrived yesterday and we already have them on nipple waterers! No messy waterers to deal with. I tried our mini feeders (1.5" street elbows in plastic quart canisters) , but the birds are too small and could hop into them, so they are on traditional feeders for now. They'll be on the new feeders soon enough.

    We process the last weekend in June, which is 2 weeks earlier than we usually do it - we're going for smaller, tenderer birds.

    Happy Broiler Raising everyone!!
     
  2. MichaelZ13

    MichaelZ13 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 16, 2015
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    You are certainly correct about the grass being a plus. It will be a lot cleaner. Also, I have found that they will start eating a lot of clover and grass. I will even bungee bunches of it to the side for them to help encourage this. I have a 6ft by 12ft by 2ft tractor and have 12-15 chickens in it. I move mine daily. The electric fence should work well. I have a metal house on half my tractor that they are penned it at night, so at night, they only occupy half of my area. I keep my tractor close to the house where my dogs are, so any disturbance alerts my dogs. My tractor, with its locked metal house is built to keep out predators. And my house has a tarp as part of its design to keep the metal house cool.

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    Last edited: May 6, 2016
  3. Lelilamom

    Lelilamom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Can you post pics of your tractor coop? We are always looking for ideas!
     
  4. MichaelZ13

    MichaelZ13 Out Of The Brooder

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    Here are some pics. What I call the "chicken plunger" allows me to herd them into the pen and also lock them in securely. And the pen is heavy enough so a predator can not lift it. We are in clay soil, so digging under the side is a bit of work. No losses last year from predators. Actually no losses at all.
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  5. Lelilamom

    Lelilamom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 28, 2013
    Awesome! Thank you! I may be stealing these plans!
     

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