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free range vs cooped growth rate

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by they'reHISchickens, Nov 2, 2009.

  1. they'reHISchickens

    they'reHISchickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Has anyone experimented with the growth rate of chicks in a coop vs free ranging with mama? Our 14 week old EEs ( hatched by broody end of July)are as large as the adult hens. I don't remember the older ones growing this fast! Based on last year's group, I am not expecting eggs from the pullets til New Years, but that seems so far away for the size of the chickens.
    Seems like a great middle/high school science experiment:) hint hint
     
  2. HEChicken

    HEChicken Overrun With Chickens

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    Interesting post. I weigh mine once a week and keep a graph in Excel of the results. I have two groups - an older group who are now 4 months old and a younger group, six weeks old. The older group free ranges. The younger group stays in a tractor until the last hour of the day when they free range under supervision (this is because a hawk appeared last week and seemed to be eyeing the younger ones who had been free-ranging up to that point). So far, the younger group weighs a little more than the older group did at the same age but there are so many variables (like breed). Still, I find it interesting to watch the graph each week.
     
  3. Akane

    Akane Overrun With Chickens

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    I see no difference between chicks raised outside, chicks raised for a short time in a pen, or chicks I've actually kept in a pen through laying age to collect purebred eggs. I do see differences between different hatches, different times of the year, and different feed.
     
  4. Svarthona

    Svarthona Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My flock is a free range-flock and I noticed differences during the year. Spring and autumn chicks seem to grow a little slower than the ones from the middle of the summer. I guess that´s because of a) temperatures, in spring and autumn they need more energy to keep themselves warm - the summer chicks can use all energy for growing and b) diet, in late summer they find lots of sweet berrys, apples, bugs, etc. which they don´t have as much during other times of the year.
    The difference is not really major, but noticeable at early age. At the age of about 3 months it´s not longer noticeable.
     
  5. jerseygirl1

    jerseygirl1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The big thing I noticed free- ranging vs. coop - they poop SOOOOO muchmore when they free range

    BIG poops, too

    [​IMG]
     
  6. Chickn chick 46

    Chickn chick 46 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:What goes in must come out as the saying goes [​IMG]
     

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