Do I need anything special to raise meat birds?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by JNorth, Mar 10, 2013.

  1. JNorth

    JNorth Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 7, 2012
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    We just moved our egg layers back to their regular coop (ran into an issue this winter so a second coop was needed), our winter coop is now empty. My father wants me to raise Cornish Rock hens for meat in the empty coop. He's agreed to do the butchering if I do the raising. I already have everything (equipment wise) from our current hens that we raised from 1 day old, is there anything else that I need?? Is the process of raising meat birds far different from raising egg layers? (Other than the length of their lives of course).
     
  2. wlbaker3

    wlbaker3 Out Of The Brooder

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    Indianapolis, IN
    I'm just about to order my first batch of meat birds, and have been doing some research. Seems like one of the major differences is the sheer amount of feed this birds will consume. To support their fast growth they have tremendous protein demands.
     
  3. fried green eggs

    fried green eggs Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 25, 2011
    S.E. Michigan
    Meat birds can eat themselves to death and even have serious leg issues if their diet is not contolled. To help avoid health issues it is a good idea to only give them access to feed 12 hours a day. They are little pooping machines that grow very fast. Many people will keep them in portable tractors. I kept ours in a tractor and gave them free range time all day. It was easy to get them back in the locked tractor by feeding them at night.
     
  4. JNorth

    JNorth Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 7, 2012
    Western New York
    Somewhere I read about a feeding chart around here, any idea where?
     
  5. fried green eggs

    fried green eggs Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 25, 2011
    S.E. Michigan
    You can just feed them the Grower Starter feed and only allow them to have it 12 hours a day. By limiting their feed this way - it will help to avoid over eatting and leg and heart problems. I had great success by putting the full feeder in their tractor each evening and I would let them out in the morning to free range. They loved their daily dust baths. It was easy to get them back in the pen in the evening as, they would come running when they saw me with the feeder. It helped them stay healthy and helped cut down on the poop in their tractor.
     

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