Improving your flock!

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by CUDA, Apr 11, 2008.

  1. CUDA

    CUDA Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,272
    24
    181
    Mar 4, 2008
    Michigan
    Ok, first off, if you treat your chickens as pets, you won't want to read this, so don't say I didn't give you fair warning! [​IMG] I just got my first hatch of the year, and so I thought I would give some advice for keeping your flock as healthy as possible. As I move my chicks to the brooder, and over the next few days, I keep an eye out for weak looking chicks. Any chick that isn't nice and perky after 24 hours or so, and isn't up running around and have a twinkle in the eye, now is the time to cull. Even though these chicks may live, they will never be the best birds possible, period. It is better for your flock, and your feed bill to cull them right away. Doing this will improve your over all health of your birds, and keep weak, and sickly birds from bringing your genetic pool down. This is just my opinion, and I am not telling you that you have to do this, but if you do, you will see a much healthier flock of birds as the years roll by. Thanks!
     
  2. onthespot

    onthespot Deluxe Dozens

    7,187
    22
    271
    Mar 29, 2008
    Riverside/Norco, CA
    what method do you use to cull your day olds? I just hatched my two first silkies, culled one last night, splayed legs. ( I wont say here how I culled it. just wondering how you dispatch them)

    The other one has a single splayed leg, about half splayed. boo. probably should go to birdie heaven too.
     
  3. airmom1c05

    airmom1c05 Chillin' With My Peeps

    954
    1
    151
    Feb 3, 2008
    Raymond, Mississippi
    Do you ever keep some as pets separate from your breeding flock?
     
  4. CUDA

    CUDA Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,272
    24
    181
    Mar 4, 2008
    Michigan
    My brood stock are my pets. Don't get me wrong, all my birds get the best I can give them, but I have no room on my yard for inferior fowl. If you do any hatching, and want some good healthy pets, I would still do it though. JMO. Thanks.
     
  5. wynedot55

    wynedot55 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 28, 2007
    your right you have to cull the sick weak or bad chicks.but a bad chick will cull its self by dieing pretty quick.
     
  6. Mrs MIA

    Mrs MIA Chick Magnet

    7,988
    41
    303
    Mar 3, 2008
    Culling can be as simple as selling the chick, or giving it away, too. If it is not sick, but just not "up to par" for improvement of your flock, give it away. Someone will surely love it! My breeder flock is separate from my "personal" egg flock, and I don't give a rip if my egg flock is sub-standard as long as I'm getting eggs. If they don't lay eggs, they're invited to dinner. Simple as that.
    Now, granted, there are a few "pets" that enjoy immunity for the boys' sake, but the rest of the flock is managed as I see fit. [​IMG]
     
  7. GwenFarms

    GwenFarms Chillin' With My Peeps

    827
    2
    151
    Feb 26, 2008
    I always let any grow until 14 wks and then cull by butchering as long as they aren' t sick. It just seems like a wasted life to me to cull that young. JMO!
     
  8. Cetawin

    Cetawin Chicken Beader

    13,752
    58
    333
    Mar 20, 2008
    NW Kentucky
    GwenFarms....I agree with you. If they are not sick, let them get pan size and then cull.
     
  9. CUDA

    CUDA Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,272
    24
    181
    Mar 4, 2008
    Michigan
    That's fine until a weak one brings a disease like CRD to your flock, but as I said, JMO. I also have a ton of birds, so some things are different with how I raise them than a person with only a few birds would. [​IMG]
     
  10. onthespot

    onthespot Deluxe Dozens

    7,187
    22
    271
    Mar 29, 2008
    Riverside/Norco, CA
    I just examined the bum leg on the other one. He does not want to put weight on it. I pulled it to a "correct" position and pulled down on it and the knee joint sorta crunched like a dog with a bad patella, so he will be going south too. I am at work, sneaked it here so I could evaluate him for a while. I work in homecare as a nurse, so the family would NOT take it well if I culled it while on the clock, if you know what I mean. I will wait til I get home. Thanks for your help and frankness. I guess it is good to get a rough start like this early on. It helps you to make better, more reasoned decisions when acquiring breeding stock.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by