I was thinking.... Can I take my cornish X's out of the tractor?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by raimnel, May 20, 2010.

  1. raimnel

    raimnel Songster

    I was just wondering instead of me dragging this chicken tractor around 4 x's a day can I just let them un caged all day and lock them up at night?? Not like their gonna run away! [​IMG]
    I raised fatties last year and all they did was sit at the feeders all day. last year I had 15 ish and this year I have 27. My tractor is 6x10, it will be 2 sq feet per bird but that's gonna = ALOT of poo and I'm gonna have to move the tractor like 5 times a day EEEWWWW! so I was just thinking of letting them be un caged ???? Boy when my DH hears this, he's gonna......... We buildt the tractor last year. [​IMG]
    Last edited: May 20, 2010
  2. scubaforlife

    scubaforlife Songster

    Jul 13, 2009
    The tractor provides confinement and protection. If you can meet those requirements another way, do that.

    All you gotta do is move the food around. This will probably mean that you will have to carry the feed and water to a different spot every day and they might follow it. CXs are lazy so don't expect normal peckin and scratching behavior esp. after they start to get bigger.

    Yes its alot of poo but my grass recovered within 2 weeks, only moving the pen once a day.
  3. Peruvian

    Peruvian Songster 10 Years

    Apr 15, 2008
    Do you really need to move it THAT often? Once or twice a day is usually plenty for 25-30 chickens in my 8x10 tractor. When they are younger I move it once every 2 days.
  4. raimnel

    raimnel Songster

    I exagrated a bit, I know [​IMG]

    I'm not talking about not feeding them, I guess I should be more clear. I'll edit post. I know they don't forage much.
    I mean just taking them out of the tractor and moving the feed and water around the yard, I figured moving the food and water would be easier on me and they would follow it, right? they want to eat so why wouldn't they go to were the food is.

    FYI this isn't the first time we have broilers I was just wondering if they have to be enclosed. (during the day)
  5. Bettacreek

    Bettacreek Crowing

    Jan 7, 2009
    Central Pennsyltucky
    Mine go out during the day and I bring them back in before it gets dark. The key to free-range is the food. Move it to the general area that you want them. They will actually scratch around and do a lackadaisical forage. If it is hot, they need cool places that they can get to. If it's really hot, I'll sometimes take the hose to them, though I recommend using caution so that you don't give them a heart attack. They don't exactly see the hose as refreshing, lol. Make sure that they run out of food before bed, or you may have a bit of a time getting to the pen.
    Last edited: May 20, 2010
  6. ourflockof4

    ourflockof4 Chirping

    Apr 9, 2010
    Northern Ohio
    As long as they are safe and are not going to be a snack for the local dogs/hawks/wildlife then you should be fine with what you are thinking of. I have let ours free range with the layer chicks and they have been fine. They would somewhat follow the layer's around and forage a little. If all you have is meaties though I could see them just sitting around the food & water and not moving all day.
  7. goatranch

    goatranch Chirping

    Dec 8, 2009
    If they are safe, go for it. Our problem was they came to find us for food. They are so friendly and they aren't afraid of anything. I love the meat of the cornish, but I adore their personality. We just got done with 46 jumbo cornish. I put a wood pallet in their coop so they were off the ground a little. I kept a pallet outside the tractor and put their food in pvc feeders in the morning before I let them out. They ate their food and foraged a while, then went back into the tractor for a nap. I just used treats at night to get them back in.

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