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Just moved to northern MI and need advice about getting laying hens and meat chickens.

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by leithsloft, Mar 1, 2014.

  1. leithsloft

    leithsloft Out Of The Brooder

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    Hi all!

    I just bought a new home in northern MI. on 10 acres in Gaylord. I am so excited that I get to have chickens! Finally after living in the city, (Wyandotte, MI and not allowed to have chickens). I did have chickens growing up, but its been 30 years! I have a 14 x 14 outbuilding here that was once a chicken coop, but the previous owners turned it into a bunkhouse for guest. It has electricity, is insulated and has a fenced in area connected to it. I want to have 5 laying hens, 1 rooster to help protect them? And we want 50 meat chickens. So...I am at a lost after this. My questions are if you can help, is this space enough for both meat chickens and laying hens? Guidance on where to buy my chicks, what type of chickens are the best for laying and for meat chickens? And whatever advice you can share is so greatly appreciated! New to this and I have been reading, bought a couple books, but still would love to hear the advice of others. So excited!! Thanks! Renee
     
  2. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend... Staff Member

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    My Coop
  3. leithsloft

    leithsloft Out Of The Brooder

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    Thank you for the links...appreciated as there are so many places here to read and not really knowing where I should start. Thanks for the welcome!
     
  4. Kelsie2290

    Kelsie2290 True BYC Addict Premium Member

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    Hello :frow and Welcome To BYC! X 2 on the Learning Center and the Meat Birds forum ... and check out your state thread for local people and where they get their birds, how they deal with the weather etc. https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/697050/michigan-thread-all-are-welcome/0_20
    Check out the BYC Breeds section for member reviews on a lot of different breeds, and the Henderson chicken breed chart compares a lot of popular breeds, http://www.sagehenfarmlodi.com/chooks/chooks.html what breeds you'll want depend on your goals, do you want strictly egg layers that you will replace every other year, do you want to hatch your own chicks etc. With the meat birds, most people think Cornish Cross when they talk about meat birds, they are really fast growing hybrids that are usually processed at around 8-12 weeks, pretty much like the chicken you see in the store, but there are also slower growing ones or duel purpose breeds that take longer to mature. Space wise, there is a really nice article from the Learning Center on figuring out how much space you need https://www.backyardchickens.com/a/how-much-room-do-chickens-need
     
  5. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

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    If you get meat birds and layers its best to keep them separated.

    The meat birds most often Cornish X literally can eat themselves to death. Some advise to have feed available for them 12 hours on and 12 hours without ,to prevent this., and to have feeders at the far end so they have to actually exercise to get to their food. If you had them in with other chickens - the Cornish will consume all the feed.
     
  6. leithsloft

    leithsloft Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 1, 2014
    Gaylord, MI
    Thank you for the warm welcome and links!
     
  7. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    Congratulations on your new home, and welcome to BYC.
     
  8. gander007

    gander007 Chicken Obsessed

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  9. leithsloft

    leithsloft Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 1, 2014
    Gaylord, MI
    Thanks everyone for the warm welcomes! One question if you might know? I am organic and use all non GMO products/food. I want to raise my birds as such. I was told this week that if I buy chicks that are on medicated gmo feed, that I can't switch them over to a non gmo starter feed when I get them. I'm confused by this statement. Does that mean that they won't survive, or does this mean that once they have this in their systems, they will be considered a non organic bird? If you have any advice on this I would greatly appreciate your advice. I am having a hard time finding local organic chicks. Thanks!
     

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