Cornish Rocks growing too slowly. Too little protein?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by nuke, Sep 27, 2015.

  1. nuke

    nuke New Egg

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    Ok, so I've raised several rounds of meat birds for my family, and I know how fast they grow. I ordered 100 chicks to sell at the local farmers market and I'm having a bit of a problem.

    I went to a feed store where they mix their own feed. It's non-GMO and non-soy, with no corn ingredients. They guarantee 16% protein, 2% fat, 10% fiber. Ingredients are black oil sunflower, millet, milo, alfalfa pellets, oats, peas, grit, oyster shell, and "organic grain products" that is supposed to be an organic protein supplement. I ferment the feed in a bucket overnight before i give it to my birds.

    My group of cornish-rocks from Welp Hatchery don't seem to be growing as fast as what I am used to. I weighed one this morning, and at 2 weeks old it's only 0.20 lbs. I expected at least 1 lb at this stage. They only have their wing feathers and aren't the plump little fluff-balls my last few groups have been. There is always a little feed left in the trough each day, so I know they aren't running out of feed. My thinking is that there is something wrong with the feed, maybe too low protein?

    At the same time, when I was pre-selling these birds, there was a big demand for eggs. I bought 25 new layers that were 4-5 months old. I had the usual pull back in production from my layers, but it has been over a week and a half they are just now giving me 4-5 eggs per day from 40 birds. I started giving them the same feed around the same time as obtaining the new birds, so I wonder if the lack of egg production could have something to do with the feed as well.

    Anyone have any experience with a situation like this? Low growth rates and low egg production from "inferior" feed? Any help would be greatly appreciated.
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2015
  2. enola

    enola Overrun With Chickens

    Are you SURE you actually received broilers and not White Rocks? How old are your layers? Are they molting?

    Try buying some different feed.
     
  3. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    Seems easy enough to trouble shoot. Buy some different feed and see how things go.

    I'd also be wondering about the correct breed of the supposed meaties. In my experience, the CX gain weight just from breathing, no matter what you feed them.
     
  4. enola

    enola Overrun With Chickens

    Pictures might help.
     
  5. CrazyTalk

    CrazyTalk Chillin' With My Peeps

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    16% is way too low for any growing birds, let alone Cornish Cross.

    See if you can get the vendor to give you a full nutritional analysis - amino acid levels and everything. Very few organic feeds are up to snuff, and almost no non-gmo feeds are.
     
  6. slingshotandLAR

    slingshotandLAR Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Pics?...

    20% is my minimum for CX, I like 23% honestly and I can easily get a 4 pound finished bird on pasture in 6 weeks.

    Now your layers....

    How old are they actually, are they started pulleys or production age birds? If they are 18-19 weeks the eggs will trickle in at first, if not there are a few things that could be keeping production low. My birds have had light for a few weeks already, are you supplementing light? How much feed do they get? They always have water right?

    Let's go from there and see


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