How to house meat birds?

9SpiceyChickens

Crowing
Jul 24, 2018
987
8,787
492
In the coop, Northern CA
Hi, it's me Kate again! So next year, I might be getting 5-20 meat birds for 4h. I'm not butchering, but I'm wondering about the care involved....

And I was wondering-

What feed should they be on first days, weeks, etc. ?
Once full grown can they live with my existing flock?
What is the best breed to start with?
How do I house them?
How long does it take for them to grow-up?
Does their gender matter?
Anything else I should know?
 

9SpiceyChickens

Crowing
Jul 24, 2018
987
8,787
492
In the coop, Northern CA
Hi, it's me Kate again! So next year, I might be getting 5-20 meat birds for 4h. I'm not butchering, but I'm wondering about the care involved....

And I was wondering-

What feed should they be on first days, weeks, etc. ?
Once full grown can they live with my existing flock?
What is the best breed to start with?
How do I house them?
How long does it take for them to grow-up?
Does their gender matter?
Anything else I should know?


Anyone??????
 

ChickNanny13

Crossing the Road
7 Years
Jun 23, 2013
8,998
12,771
967
The Big Island/Hawaii
I have no clue but I'd think raising meat birds are no different, just getting the right breed. You may want to repost in the Managing Your Flock forum ...

What feed should they be on first days, weeks, etc. ?
Chick Starter then switch over to Grower or Flock Raiser

Once full grown can they live with my existing flock?
Depends how big your coop/run is

What is the best breed to start with?
Depends how fast you want to do the turn around, read Cornish turn around time is fast. Leghorns comes to my mind. Research the Meat Breeds in the forum.

How do I house them?
No different than any other chicken; clean & secure housing, high protein feed & clean water.

How long does it take for them to grow-up?
Again depends to the breed, look into Cornish Rex & Leghorns

Does their gender matter?
Gender don't matter, pullets you get bonus eggs & cockerels you get the crowing

Anything else I should know?
:caf
 

9SpiceyChickens

Crowing
Jul 24, 2018
987
8,787
492
In the coop, Northern CA
I have no clue but I'd think raising meat birds are no different, just getting the right breed. You may want to repost in the Managing Your Flock forum ...

What feed should they be on first days, weeks, etc. ?
Chick Starter then switch over to Grower or Flock Raiser

Once full grown can they live with my existing flock?
Depends how big your coop/run is

What is the best breed to start with?
Depends how fast you want to do the turn around, read Cornish turn around time is fast. Leghorns comes to my mind. Research the Meat Breeds in the forum.

How do I house them?
No different than any other chicken; clean & secure housing, high protein feed & clean water.

How long does it take for them to grow-up?
Again depends to the breed, look into Cornish Rex & Leghorns

Does their gender matter?
Gender don't matter, pullets you get bonus eggs & cockerels you get the crowing

Anything else I should know?
:caf



Hold Up!


Leghorns, like the laying type? Aren't those egg producers?
 

digbychris

Songster
Apr 6, 2017
113
92
127
Depending on the breed of meat bird, they don't do well keeping them beyond butcher weight. This is especially true with the industrial Cornish cross, jumbo or not. I don't have great experience like others on this forum, but they will not range as a dual purpose or layer will. In fact, because of their hybrid genes, they may not live long past 8-10 weeks because of weight. I have tried and failed what you want to do (raising/ranging with layers or dual purpose), at the cost of the birds life.
However, as for feed you will want to start with a high protein (24% or so) and after a few weeks reduce to a 18% starter/grower. If you have Cornish or other broiler you can ration their feed 12 hours at a time to slow their growth rate to reduce morbidity but they are going to grow fast and along with that comes weight that their legs cant support for long, etc. and that's why they don't range well.
Gender doesn't matter to much with meat birds as typically they are processed before that starts to develop.
I have zero experience with leghorns, but they don't seem like a very meaty bird to me.
 

9SpiceyChickens

Crowing
Jul 24, 2018
987
8,787
492
In the coop, Northern CA
Depending on the breed of meat bird, they don't do well keeping them beyond butcher weight. This is especially true with the industrial Cornish cross, jumbo or not. I don't have great experience like others on this forum, but they will not range as a dual purpose or layer will. In fact, because of their hybrid genes, they may not live long past 8-10 weeks because of weight. I have tried and failed what you want to do (raising/ranging with layers or dual purpose), at the cost of the birds life.
However, as for feed you will want to start with a high protein (24% or so) and after a few weeks reduce to a 18% starter/grower. If you have Cornish or other broiler you can ration their feed 12 hours at a time to slow their growth rate to reduce morbidity but they are going to grow fast and along with that comes weight that their legs cant support for long, etc. and that's why they don't range well.
Gender doesn't matter to much with meat birds as typically they are processed before that starts to develop.
I have zero experience with leghorns, but they don't seem like a very meaty bird to me.


Ok, thank you!

How should I house 10-20 birds?
 

ourltlflock

Songster
6 Years
Jan 2, 2014
95
23
116
Las Vegas
I use an 8x10 dog pen with a small 3 sided shelter. No roosts, they won't use them. I added straw to the whole pen, after 8 weeks I rake it out and add to the garden. It's really dry here so the poo dries quickly and it isn't as messy as you'd think. I had 12 in this setup.
 

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom