Free ranging/ best meat bird

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by mungo157, Feb 28, 2014.

  1. mungo157

    mungo157 New Egg

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    Feb 28, 2014
    I know almost nothing about meat birds, but we want to try to raise a few this spring. Im looking for the best breed that I can have in tractors, and my land is usually more wet than dry (we live at the bottom of a mountain) So my main concern is that I want healthy chickens for our family to eat. I want them to be healthy and happy and able to live on grass and eat bugs. Im willing to sacrifice the size of the bird a bit, but I don't want to eat a laying hen either. Can anyone suggest a good breed and hatchery that would be best? and any other tips about "free ranging" Im looking to do a dozen at time. Thanks!
     
  2. Alaskan

    Alaskan The Frosted Flake

    What you are looking for is the "freedom rangers" often sold in hatcheries. Most hatchery web pages have a "meat birds" button. Click that, then pick whatever is there that doesn't say "cornish cross"

    The Cornish Cross are the ones that end up looking like the chicken in a grocery store. But, you have to watch them more than " normal" chickens since they can over eat, get so heavy that they die of heart failure or their weight actually breaks their bones. Also, they grow so fast that their feathers don't keep up very well, so they need heat a bit longer than "normal" chickens. Up side is that they go from chick to eating size very quickly.
     
  3. oldrooster

    oldrooster One Crazy Nut

    Alaskan is correct and many have there own version of freedom rangers (freedom rangers are a trade marked strain of birds by one breeder he and some hatcheries all sell his genetic cross of birds) often dixie rainbow or whatever followed by ranger.
     
  4. call ducks

    call ducks silver appleyard addict

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    waterville , canada
    Hey Freedom Rangers are just a name - The hatchery that breeds them uses commerical line. The hatchery does not actually own rights to the breeding stock they have (best way I could put it). Many other hatchery's offer a alternative broiler - even with the different names they probably are just two or three different types. There's only so many parent lines in existence.
     
  5. Bossroo

    Bossroo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The CornishX all the way. Those that experience issues are the ones with their own management issues. I as well as many here on this site, have raised them for quite a few years and I and they don't have any or very minor issues mentioned.
     

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