Feeding in cold weather ?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by Acre of Blessings, Nov 18, 2008.

  1. Acre of Blessings

    Acre of Blessings Canning/Sewing Addict

    Apr 3, 2008
    Axton, VA
    Do the cornish x need more feed when its cold or less beings they don't move around as much as they would if it is warm?

    Just wondering.
     
  2. miss_thenorth

    miss_thenorth Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 28, 2007
    SW Ont, Canada
    I fed my meaties free choice--I did not take their food away at all, so i couldn't see how cold or hot would make a difference. I am assuming you take their food away?
     
  3. Acre of Blessings

    Acre of Blessings Canning/Sewing Addict

    Apr 3, 2008
    Axton, VA
    Yes, I take it away due to the fact it cost right at $15 a bag and I am needing 1 1/2 to 2 bags a week now. With money being tight I have no choice.
     
  4. miss_thenorth

    miss_thenorth Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 28, 2007
    SW Ont, Canada
    Forgive me if this sounds ignorant--(b/c I truly don't know). They are going to need the same amount of food to get them to butcher weight whether they eat all the time, or have their food rationed, yes? I fed mine free choice for 8 weeks, and their butcher weight was 7-8 lbs. after processing.

    Limiting their food intake would just extend how long you raise them till butcher weight, wouldn't it?


    Not meaning to patronize you, just curious on your reasoning.
     
  5. greyfields

    greyfields Overrun With Chickens

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    nutritional requirements increase in the winter, since they are getting fewer gleanings and more energy is expended to keep warm
     
  6. Acre of Blessings

    Acre of Blessings Canning/Sewing Addict

    Apr 3, 2008
    Axton, VA
    They are just about ready for butchering so this is why I am asking. We are going butcher 6 this coming Saturday (for a trial run) along with some rabbits. Then after Thanksgiving (my favorite time of year) we are going to butcher the rest.

    They are around the 4 to 4 1/2 pound mark live weight.
     
  7. blueskylen

    blueskylen Chillin' With My Peeps

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    we didn't feed ours at night, so many said not to, and altho they were ravenous in the mornings, we didn't have any eating themselves to death before butchering time - only 1 keeled over, and it was definitely the heaviest one we had. also, when butchering them - there was one that had fluid in it and had to be thrown away which i think is a sign of overeating too.

    they still dressed out between 5 -7 lbs at 8 weeks. a good size for us.
     
  8. cheeze

    cheeze Time Out

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    Oct 6, 2008
    middle TN
    Quote:ive been thinking alot on this and i dis agree, i only feed what they will eat in an hour or so and they free range all the rest of the day.

    yes they will grow slower without food 24 hours a day .

    seems to me the more you feed the less they find for themselves and lets be honest a chicken would live without you feeding him idc what anyone says.

    so if you dont mind eating older chicken (ive ate 2 yo old birds, tasted like chicken to me) it seems to me with the free range bird you will save money and the bird will still get to the same size with less store bought food.

    I do have a large free range area as in 20 acre hay field that looks like a lawn so my birds crops look full when they come in at night from ranging .

    If you use runs and small range areas this idea will not work im aware.I have no runs ,when my barn doors open my birds are free to roam anywhere they want. i live out in the woods and have no predator problems at all for some reason .
     
  9. Acre of Blessings

    Acre of Blessings Canning/Sewing Addict

    Apr 3, 2008
    Axton, VA
    Our layer chickens roam in a half acre fenced area, but our meaties are confined to one corner area. This way they can hold onto more weight instead of excercising and losing it. Like I said, we are close to butchering day and I just thought that since they were in a confined area if I would have to feed them as much. They do have a heat lamp in the house of a night for heat.
     
  10. CUDA

    CUDA Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 4, 2008
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    Normal breed chickens food intake goes down in the winter months, but if you are raising birds for meat, you will want to feed them out like normal.
     

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