Feeding my Jumbo Cornish X Rocks for 4-H project

freerangerocks

Hatching
7 Years
Apr 26, 2012
4
0
7
We are raising meat chickens for the first time and my son is going to show them for 4-H. We are planning on raising 12 and whatever he doesn't show we'll process for our own food. I would like to feed them as naturally as possible yet still make them somewhat competitive for fair. We have a tractor we are going to use after they get out of the brooder. Do we need to feed medicated food? I thought the show food I saw was medicated... Trying to avoid that since we're going to be eating it. Any suggestions, advice would be greatly aprreciated on amount to feed and if we should keep food available 24/7. THanks.
 

brahmabreeder

Songster
7 Years
Feb 22, 2012
2,516
122
211
Northeast Ohio
Did you already buy your meat birds? Mt. healthy has the best cornish x rocks. The judges have always liked that my birds have yellow legs. The also are short and have very wide and well carried back breast. When picking out birds for fair pick birds that are similar to each other. Medicated feed is good for the beginning of the chicks life.
 

freerangerocks

Hatching
7 Years
Apr 26, 2012
4
0
7
They are arriving tomorrow. What's the benefit of medicated food? We try to eat organic as much as possible so I'm hesitant to feed something I wouldn't want to eat but I'm willing to do it if we have to....
 

brahmabreeder

Songster
7 Years
Feb 22, 2012
2,516
122
211
Northeast Ohio
Medicated feed helps prevent cocciodosis. I have never had this problem but I have always used medicated feed. Just curious you aren't keeping your meat birds with your layers are you. If you do then one of the two won't get the proper nutrition and won't be healthy. Plus you want to feed the meat birds quite a bit of feed so you don't want to over feed layers. Also meat birds produce a lot of waste. Meaning the coop needs cleaned frequently. The judges like even the meat birds to have decent feathering. Their thought is it helps prevent the meat from getting ruined.
 

vfem

Yoga...The Chicken Pose
11 Years
Aug 4, 2008
7,324
22
264
Fuquay Varina, NC
I lost 2 meaties to cocci and I ended up having to treat with corrid.... I would go with medicated chick starter. They grow so fast I only had them on it for about 4 weeks, then I moved over to flock raiser and scratch. We did the fermented feed and they've been growing massively since them! Extremely healthy systems and legs since we switched over. I also do mine in a tractor coop and move it multiple times a day. They get lots of fresh grass and bugs and I'm very impressed with the quality of the birds so far. I'll be processing them next week.
 

freerangerocks

Hatching
7 Years
Apr 26, 2012
4
0
7
We are keeping them separated from the layers. I 'm just trying to decide whether it's worth the risk of not giving medicated food at this point in time so we can have chickens to eat that have been on grass, with no antibiotics or hormones.
 

brahmabreeder

Songster
7 Years
Feb 22, 2012
2,516
122
211
Northeast Ohio
I wouldn't worry about the medicine in the feed you only give the birds the feed when they young. In other words it will have more than enough time to get out of their system.
 

Buster52

Songster
10 Years
Jan 28, 2009
3,635
37
228
Geronimo Oklahoma
We are keeping them separated from the layers. I 'm just trying to decide whether it's worth the risk of not giving medicated food at this point in time so we can have chickens to eat that have been on grass, with no antibiotics or hormones.

We don't feed medicated chick starter and have had no problems with cocci. That is mostly a management issue. If you keep their area clean and use proper pasture rotation, parasites in general aren't a problem.

We also prefer a more natural bird, and so far, so do our customers.

But to be clear, medicated chick starter contains neither antibiotics nor hormones. Only a coccidiostat. Still, we don't use it.
 

SmokingPistol

In the Brooder
7 Years
May 14, 2012
52
1
41
San Marcos, CA
Alright, I've had a grand champ meat pen at my county fair and this years looks better. Pick the ones hes going to raise keep them in the garage on shavings at first then switch to clay cat litter gradually. Keep an eye out and weigh them often. they won't get big enough fast enough if you feed them grass. Mine are on light and feed 24/7 and they are five weeks and averege weight is about 3.4 lbs. You need to choose to be competitive at fair or grow them slowly for yourself.
 

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