How much space does a Cornish cross giant need to live comfortable

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by Kid chicken1, Jun 28, 2016.

  1. Kid chicken1

    Kid chicken1 New Egg

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    Jun 24, 2016
    I'm wanting to get some Cornish cross chickens how much per square foot does one chicken need? How many can comfortably live in my 8x6 chicken tractor
     
  2. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    About 9 or 10. Many keep more per sq ft than that, but if you want them healthy, you should give them room just like any other breed. Plus the more space they have, the more they can move. The more they move, the less likely they will have leg problems or heart issues before they are ready for processing.
     
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2016
  3. Kid chicken1

    Kid chicken1 New Egg

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    Ok will do! Thanks
     
  4. deedles

    deedles Chillin' With My Peeps

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    But what if they are out all day? I'm planning to have 25 birds in a 4x8 tractor at night but out in the daytime. I would think it would be a bit crowded the last week or two but only at night when they are asleep. Not good?
     
  5. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    You have to keep in mind just how much those 25 birds will be pooping at night. In such a small space, you're going to need a serious amount of ventilation, while still keeping them sheltered.
     
  6. deedles

    deedles Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Their tractor is make from a small dog run so it's all ventilation. I was going to cover the back half with a tarp for protection from the elements. Now I wonder if we should rework it to be 8x8?
     
  7. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    They need a bigger shelter area than you are planning on providing. Remember, they will be much larger than the average chicks. And you don't want them crushing each other, if they all try to pile into the shelter area.
     
  8. eviemethugh

    eviemethugh Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We let our Cornish X free range all day and pen them up at night in two 10x10 tractors (100 birds, so 50 per tractor if they split perfectly) The whole top of ours is covered (with tin), and one side which we try to put facing any wind or rain if possible. A few nights we end up throwing a tarp over the whole thing except the front to keep the rain off the sides so they can sleep comfortably. We move ours every day while they are out of it so they don't get dirty while they are sleeping. They will literally COVER every inch of ground in poo in just 8-10 hours of sleep. Make sure you are keeping them near natural cover like trees or bushes, this shade is much more comfortable than tarp shade and they will need a place to run from predators.

    There is NOTHING worse than scalding a dirty chicken before plucking feathers...boiled poo is NOT a good smell, so keep em clean! I think your pen size can work if you are truly free ranging every day and able to move it every two days when they are smaller and every day when it is needed. It's just 8 weeks, you can do anything for that long! That's what I have to tell myself anyway! HA
     
  9. deedles

    deedles Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh, thank you for weighing in with your experience. Our intent is to free range them as much as possible but some days it might not work out so I think we are going to go ahead with a bigger 8x8 just in case they have to get moved but stay indoors sometimes. They'll be getting fermented feed as well, so that should help with the poop a little bit. Smell-wise anyway. Boiled poo does not sound very good at all.

    Our yard is mostly shady and we'll be moving them through there over the 8 weeks but of course they'll be running around wherever. We do have a guardian dog on the property for predator patrol.

    We've had layer chickens and currently have ducks and guinea hens so these guys are another experiment to see how we like it. I guess we'll see, :)
     

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