Freedom Rangers - Laying Hens??

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by MamaDragon, Oct 13, 2008.

  1. MamaDragon

    MamaDragon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 4, 2008
    Camden, AR
    Has anybody kept any of their Ranger pullets long enough for them to lay eggs?

    Yes, I KNOW they are supposed to be a meat-bird. But as they wont drop dead at 12 weeks, like some of the other dedicated meat varieties, I was curious about them.

    How'd they do.?
     
  2. greyfields

    greyfields Overrun With Chickens

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    Mar 15, 2007
    Washington State
    I have 2 black, 2 grey and 2 golden in my flock, along with 1 golden roo. They have all lived to point of lay and I even bred the black ones to my Dark Cornish Roo last winter.

    The only 'downside' is that they are big, heavy birds. All the cockrels can outrun them, so they tend to get over-mated. The black ones I have, who have been around longest, are missing most their sadle feathes and many others.
     
  3. SandraMort

    SandraMort Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 7, 2008
    ny
    Joel (from jm hatchery) told me they'd lay well. I'm hoping so! I'm considering keeping a half dozen or so, since my layers are all still small enough to fit in my palm. Do you htink that they'll lay sooner since they mature so quickly? When do you think I'd see my first eggs? Do I sound impatient? I can't eat supermarket eggs anymore, I'm spoiled for life!
     
  4. MamaDragon

    MamaDragon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 4, 2008
    Camden, AR
    I'm wondering the same thing, especially since out of 11 hens, I'm only getting 2 - 5 eggs a day right now.

    I was considering getting 25 Rangers come spring, and harvesting most of them, but keeping 6 - 10 of the pullets if they would make acceptable layers.

    I'm also curious what kinds of chicks these particular crosses will produce. Can always have Science Experiment for lunch. [​IMG]

    Kathy
     
  5. greyfields

    greyfields Overrun With Chickens

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    Mar 15, 2007
    Washington State
    I have posted photos on here several times of chickens which my retained Freedom Rangers have produced. Using them as dames has given me the best results as far as size and growth (although they grow nowhere as quickly as a commercial broiler, including the Colored Range Broilers).

    p.s. One more point to make. Freedom Rangers/Colored Range Broilers are hybrids. If you rebreed them, you do not get another Freedom Ranger/Colored Range Broiler. You get a 2nd generation which may or may not resemble the F1 cross with its high heterosis. But, at the same time, your results will probably be better than crossbreeding two breeds of laying hen. Just sometimes, even breeding the same two birds, you will get as many outcomes as you do eggs. Breeding hybrids is not a predictable endeavor.
     
  6. MamaDragon

    MamaDragon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 4, 2008
    Camden, AR
    Greyfields - Thanks! I had seen the pics of the Rangers, but not the Ranger offspring. I'll go look again.

    Do you happen to know what birds were used in creating the Ranger lines?

    Can you hazard a guess of average number of eggs per week?

    Do you consider them to be fair layers? poor? better than you expected?

    I'm not expecting an egg a day, even my Production Reds aren't doing that well right now. [​IMG]

    Kathy
     
  7. SandraMort

    SandraMort Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 7, 2008
    ny
    I hadn't seen these pics, either. Where can I find them?
     
  8. greyfields

    greyfields Overrun With Chickens

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    Quote:All Hubbard states is they originated with "Heritage Breeds". Be aware that the birds used to create the cross probably look nothing like any 'purebred' we have in the backyard. So, you can't really deduce it, except to say they have bred for good qualities (disease reistance, nice plumage, forage ability) rather than just straight growth rates.

    Quote:I really couldn't. I see them on the nests. They lay eggs, I'm certain, since i've used them in the breeding pen. 4-6 ?

    As far as layers go, they are not ideal for a laying flock. They are large birds, meaning the ammount of feed they take in probably is not offset by what you can sell your eggs for. This may or may not matter to you, as they are pretty birds and I like showing them off.

    Quote:No way I can tell since I don't trap nest. I just know the eggs are brown, average size, average color.

    Quote:If you don't have a light in your laying house now, you are in for a long, cold, eggless Winter. Time to get those lights set up, people!
     
  9. SogniBurelli

    SogniBurelli New Egg

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    Oct 20, 2009
    During the summer I got 10 Ranger chicks, harvested 6 and kept 4 girls for layers. I live in a Zone 4 area and hoped their bulk would help them through the cold months. They have been laying for about a month now and so far we have been getting about an egg every other day. Since they are all together we don't know who is doing what but we often get double yolks and about once a week we get a triple! This is my first experience with these Rangers so I don't know if this is common... of all the chickens I have raised these have been the most gentle...
     

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