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

    Oct 31, 2008
    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

    Aug 12, 2009
    BuCo, KS
    My Coop
    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

    Jun 15, 2008
    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

    Oct 4, 2009
    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 Overrun With Chickens

    Jun 20, 2009
    Orange County, NY
    The big thing I noticed free- ranging vs. coop - they poop SOOOOO muchmore when they free range

    BIG poops, too

  6. Chickn chick 46

    Chickn chick 46 Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 22, 2009
    Quote:What goes in must come out as the saying goes [​IMG]

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