1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

Dixie Rainbows Meaties

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by ChikeeMomma, Nov 23, 2009.

  1. ChikeeMomma

    ChikeeMomma Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 29, 2009
    Mid Michigan
    I am finishing up with the Dixies. And I think I'll do the Cornish next time. The Dixie roosters seem to be a decent size, but the pullets are not even close to being ready at all. I let the the roosters and pullets go to 15 weeks. They were not ready at 12 weeks. I freely fed them a 24% protein feed (locally mixed). So now I have the pullets for sale and the roos will head for the freezer. We did butcher one roo and he was pretty yummy, though! I did hear mention that the pullets do make a fine egg layer. So I am keeping two for myself and selling the other five. They are beautiful birds, too. Almost a shame to butcher the roos because of how pretty they are. Again, next year I'm doing the Cornish cross. Hopefully, I'll have a little heavier bird -- I know I will. [​IMG]
     
  2. bigredfeather

    bigredfeather Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,194
    28
    211
    Oct 1, 2008
    Yorkshire, Ohio
    The Cornish has it's troubles, but if done correctly, you can't beat them. It's amazing how quickly you can get such a nice bird.
     
  3. ChikeeMomma

    ChikeeMomma Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 29, 2009
    Mid Michigan
    Hopefully, I'll be sucessful with the Cornish. My grandpa always raised them when I was younger. I would just like a little more meat on the bones! Homegrown chicken does taste great, though. Hadn't tasted it in a while. Will the Cornish graze on grasses somewhat? I'd like to be able to let them roam about, too.
     
  4. bigredfeather

    bigredfeather Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,194
    28
    211
    Oct 1, 2008
    Yorkshire, Ohio
    Quote:Some people say yes, others say no. I say they do. When I processed my last batch, I found grass in almost every crop/gizzard. As far as letting them roam, I wouldn't give them too much space if you want big birds quicker. IMO, if you let them roam too much they burn off energy that would otherwise be put to meat production. I prefer a tractor. It gives them access to green grass, fresh air, and sunshine, but at the same time, limits the amount of energy they can burn roaming. My guess is that if you did two batches with identical circumstances other than amount of room they had, they ones that were more confined would be bigger. That's just my opinion. I have no facts to back it. It would be an interesting expiriement. My last batch I used two tractors. One tractor was 60 sqft and had 34 birds in it. The other was 45 sqft and had 28 in it. Interestingly enough, the birds in the smaller tractor were all bigger. I had them all in one tractor for 4 weeks, then seperated them randomly into the two tractors at that point. I'm not sure why this happened, but it certainly brings up a point worth debating. I would guess the ones in the smaller tractor were about a pound bigger on average.

    Something to chew on.
     
  5. ChikeeMomma

    ChikeeMomma Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 29, 2009
    Mid Michigan
    Thanks for the advice! I have a run which is a good size for meat birds. I just like to let the meaties out to run free every once in a while. They seem to do less damage than my layers, who love to dig around the foundation of our house. Drives the hubby bonkers when they do that! Well, I'm excited to try the Cornish next year.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by