feed program for cornish

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by mike8937, Feb 8, 2013.

  1. mike8937

    mike8937 Out Of The Brooder

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    has anyone experimented with a feed program that yields the best tasting chicken? i have been searching and haven't come up with anything. i have read about fermenting the feed and i don't think its for me. right now my Cornish cross pullets are eating blue seal starter. my main concern is how, when and what to feed for finishing them. i am hoping for a more flavorful meat over store bought. i already know i cant beat the price per pound at the store, so even if i have to spend a little more on the best feed to get the best meat i will do it.
     
  2. redsoxs

    redsoxs Chicken Obsessed

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    I have read quite a bit in the Fermented Feed thread as well, but not all of it (that thing is HUGE)! I terms of flavor I'm not sure if FF influences that or not. I know a lot of folks on BYC who raise Cornish X will feed 12 hours on - 12 off - more so for leg problems from what I understand, so they grow a little slower. I suppose doing so they are a little less fat...or maybe just don't get as fat as soon, I don't know. Others want them to finish quickly and feed unlimited. I have found with mine I give them them some free range opportunities along with their standard feed - which for me is an un-medicated starter feed. I'm not much for fried chicken and raise mine for roasters so I go for a slower growth rate and a little exercise plus a variety of diet (free range and kitchen scraps). For me it yields a great tasting bird!
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2013
  3. wyoDreamer

    wyoDreamer Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Just raising them at your home with some fresh air, some room to move and sunshine will probably enhance the flavor quite a bit.
     
  4. Life is Good!

    Life is Good! Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I've used fermented feed for our CX batch last fall. Fed 'em treats daily, fresh greens, yogurt, mealworms, bugs the kids caught, worms from the garden, etc. Frankly, the taste is so similar to grocery store birds, not sure if all that effort yielded different results on the palatte. In terms of quality of meat, yes! But in my mouth...not so much.

    However, my layer flock does taste different to me - partly because they're typically older birds being culled - but I also believe because it's a different breed of chicken. I like the taste of the FR's better than the CX. Husband cannot tell the difference. Teenage sons simply inhale whatever is on the plate in front of them, so their opinoin doesn't count yet! Since I'm the chef of the family, we're getting more red broilers this year if I can find them in limited quantity. Not doing 25 again. Simply too many roosters all at once. Now, 12, yes, we're on board!

    Fermenting feed is not difficult. The challenge is to keep it fresh, by only putting in what you'll need in a few days. I made the mistake last fall, as the broilers were being processed, to refill the 5gal bucket. I only had 13 birds eating out of it. The feed grew some mold which I didn't feel comfortable feeding them, so I removed the top 'skin' of mold and feed and used the remaining. The bucket has since frozen, due to weather, so it'll be interesting to see what happens when it thaws, come mid April! Do give FF a try. It really helped with minimizing the 'ick' factor. Hugely. I won't do meaties without it!
     

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