Cornish X

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Aves, Nov 16, 2011.

  1. Aves

    Aves Out Of The Brooder

    I happened to have two Cornish cross - 4-week-old chicks..I don't plan to kill nor eat them, I came upon them accidentally and decided to keep them as an experiment...meaning how long can they actually live. They definitely are heavier than the other 4-week-old chicks they are growing up with..Can others share their experience for pet quality? such as longevity, leg problems etc.,..


    Last edited: Nov 16, 2011
  2. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

    Nov 9, 2007
    SW Arkansas
    Two pieces of advice when raising cornish Xs that you don't intend to process at an early age - restrict their access to food and get them out and walking around every day. Don't let them sit in front of a feeder and eat themselves to death.
  3. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    I am just not completely sure of the wisdom of trying to care for the CX as a long term project. It'll take some close management.
  4. jessicayarno

    jessicayarno Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 6, 2011
    Pacific Northwest
    These birds are not to be kept for longer than 8 wks... They are programmed to eat constantly and do not forage well.. Hopefully if they are struggling to walk or breath you will put them out of their misery... Good luck though, I have heard of people keeping them longer, seems like alot of work to me..
  5. silversniper

    silversniper Out Of The Brooder

    Oct 5, 2011
    I have a cornish x light sussex cockerel 13 weeks old no problems so far but they do grow quicker my ones the same size as 22 week pullets, although a little heavier than others he is fine and top of pecking order. I feed him no different than the others although he doesn't like pellets much, he spends all day foraging instead.

    Plus we keep him in the house from evening to 8 am he's starting crowing, he follows everyone up and down three floors which helps aswell.

    Just make sure they have lots of room to run around and objects to jump on.
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2011
  6. Beekissed

    Beekissed Flock Master

    You might supplement their calcium, replace the loss of electrolytes~ caused by their high metabolism and resulting diarrhea~ with some ACV in their water, and provide weight bearing exercise like having them walk up and down a ramp in order to get food and water, or place the food on one end of the run and water at the other. The loss of electrolytes is one of the reasons these birds have heart failure in stressed or hot conditions.

    These birds do indeed forage, so they can and will if you provide free range opportunities from a young age...this will increase leg and heart muscle strength.

    Eventually, if you notice they are struggling to walk, gasping for breath after mild exercise or suffering in the heat, I'd urge you to be merciful to these chickens by putting them are expecting normal development and growth/health from a breed that is not genetically developed to give this to you past a certain age. I hope it goes well but, if it doesn't, please be merciful.
  7. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    Search around here, there was a thread (maybe on the meat bird section?) about someone who had them a few years, I think? Or maybe I'm getting senile. I have seen them as old as a year, but it takes effort and they do end up having to be put down eventually.
  8. Dead Rabbit

    Dead Rabbit Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 28, 2010
    i kept mine till they were 12 months old. and had one go down in the legs. i raised mine battery cage style. then butchered them...... i can see where they wouldnt last long. if it was i,,,,id butcher them and get something else to experiment with.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by