Chicken pen for Cornish broilers.

viper125

In the Brooder
6 Years
Feb 3, 2013
24
2
26
Salem,Ohio
Soon to order some Cornish broilers. So decided to build a small pen to raise 100 birds. Well see commercial specks at .6 sq. ft. Dont sound good to me. So ended up with an in the barn pen of 48" high 12 foot wide and 20 foot long. Or 240 sq. ft. Not sure how many i can raise in there. I covered it all in 1" x 1" plastic mesh. Figure on hanging 2-3 heat lights dead center. Wood chips/shavings on floor about 3" deep. Concrete floor.
Was wondering if for some reason the size should be cut back for brooding then opened to raise. Personally i see none. Seems if cold they'll gather around the lights and spread if to warm.
Figure on spacing lights about 2-3 foot apart to prevent them from crowding and suffocating the others. Food at the on end of lights and water at the other. To prevent wet feed and mold.
As far as I know a baby cant fly 4 foot and surely cant fly when the grow so much weight. Right? If they do they'll still be in my locked barn.
Well such is my plans. BE happy to hear suggestions or comments on them.
 

SIMZ

Crowing
10 Years
Apr 29, 2011
2,168
229
281
Northwest Indiana
We raise between 50-75 in a pen that is 13X8 BUT they also have access to a very large outside yard. They could be raised exclusively in the pen area, but it would be a poopy, stinky mess of epic proportions. How many you would want to raise in your pen depends on how much room you want to give them. 100 would fit in that size with plenty of room until the last few weeks.

You may want to plan on more than 3" of bedding. They'll have it completely smashed and soaked in no time.

They won't get out of a 48" high pen. Ours is only about a foot high. The only way they get out is through openings in the bottom. A bigger issue is just making sure predators can't get in.

We always block off an area and expand it out to the full size as they grow. If you keep your lights in the middle and place the feeders close by you probably wouldn't need to block it off. With an area that big some of them may wander off and get lost - thereby getting cold and dying - although, probably not an issue after a few days.
 

viper125

In the Brooder
6 Years
Feb 3, 2013
24
2
26
Salem,Ohio
Well we will clean or layer as needed. and I have layers in this building for 2.5 years with out any problems with predators. Pretty well closed up. and most snakes her are small Gardner snakes. Most likely the peeps would consider food. LOL! A vey mice but never seen a rat.
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LindaB220

Crowing
6 Years
Aug 23, 2013
6,179
884
341
Portland/Vancouver area
Well we will clean or layer as needed. and I have layers in this building for 2.5 years with out any problems with predators. Pretty well closed up. and most snakes her are small Gardner snakes. Most likely the peeps would consider food. LOL! A vey mice but never seen a rat.
.

Hey Viper,
welcome-byc.gif
It can be done. Best thing to do is research deep litter at the top of the page. Also, think about Fermenting the feeds. Money saver and keeps the stink down a lot. Fill 5 gallon bucket half full of broiler feed add 2 gallon water and stir May need to add up to another half gallon water. You can add 2 T. mothered apple cider vinegar but it isn't necessary. Cover with towel. Stir daily. After 4 days it should be ready to feed. When it gets down to about 1/4 full add more water and stir and then start adding feed. Get it to the consistancy of oatmeal or peanut butter. It's ready the next morning. If you want keep 2 containers going all the time. This takes about 5 min. but you will not have to water near as much so it about equals out. Feed it in rain gutters cut in half to 5' lengths hammered to a 2" x 4" to steady it. The deep litter is good even for meat birds because you just keep giving it a stir with a fork and adding 1" layering at a time. After a few days the poo just disintegrates into the bedding. I would give them a good serving in the morning and extra to keep them to afternoon. Then around 4 pm or so do it again. After they are a couple of weeks old cut back on the feed a bit so they don't overeat. Keep any feed and water high enough that they have to stand to eat it. Strengthens their legs. If this is your first time don't go for 100. Maybe 50-60. There's a learning curve.
 

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