Local farmer just offered 22 meat chickens-7 weeks. Should I get them?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by chickenannie, Nov 18, 2008.

  1. chickenannie

    chickenannie Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 19, 2007
    They are butchering the last of the season, and these ones are too small -- the runty ones that he doesn't want to deal with since his butchering season is over. I'll get them for free IF I pick them up tonight from their farm. He says they are healthy, just runty, and will take another 4-5 weeks to maturity. I don't have indoor housing, but I have an outdoors pen that I can cover with a tarp and surround with hay bales for warmth. Chicken for the freezer and for selling...

    Should I take them?
  2. KellyHM

    KellyHM Overrun With Chickens

    Sep 10, 2008
    Lakeland, FL
    Yes!! I would jump at the chance!
  3. freemotion

    freemotion Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 10, 2008
    Western MA
    I would be inclined to!
  4. chiknlady

    chiknlady Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 12, 2008
    SE PA
    I say go for it---I had mine on the wrong protein mix and after correcting it to a higher percentage--they grew leaps and bounds and the first ones topped out at 6-7 pounds at 9 weeks. Now I suspect they are mostly in the 8-9 pound range at 11 weeks and I am looking for freezer space. So just make sure you keep them at 20% for a few weeks and give them healthy snacks like table scraps and greens and you will be in good shape...
  5. megshenhut

    megshenhut Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 21, 2007
    Central Colorado
    I would take them. Just don't put them in with your layer chickens. I tried that once, bad news. The layers picked on them something awful and then I found out they need the higher protein feed too.
  6. Laskaland

    Laskaland ThE gRoOvY cHiCkEn

    Aug 2, 2008
    I would, especially if you don;t mind doing your own butchering. Seems like it would be a good way to start out the new year!!
    Can you get a hold of a dog kennel/crate so they would be somewhat enclosed? My DH went to the dump and picked up some leftovers from construction sites- wood panels and what not.
    Might be worth looking into?
    Good luck!
  7. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    How small is "too small"? My inclination would be to get them and just process them myself right away, whatever size they be... that way you have next to no expenses, just free meat [​IMG] And if they're kinda runty now who knows how much growing they would even do in another month.

    Have fun, whatever you decide to do,

  8. chickenannie

    chickenannie Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 19, 2007
    I got 'em!
    They're probably about 2-3 lbs right now. They're in a crate in the barn for warmth, but I'm going to have to get up early early before work tommorrow and put them out in a cage with food and water. I'm going to give them 16% protein -- that's what the farmer said he had just started giving them (before that it was much higher protein).

    These are pastured chickens, that were moved daily. I don't have a pen I can move daily, plus there's no good grass now that it's winter, so I think i'll open a hay bale and keep adding to it each week so they stay clean. I understand that they poop quite a lot!

    Maybe a dressed chicken for Christmas presents this year??! Since I can't fit 22 birds in my freezer.
  9. SandraMort

    SandraMort Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 7, 2008
    Wow, how do I get a deal like that?!? Grab it!
  10. KellyHM

    KellyHM Overrun With Chickens

    Sep 10, 2008
    Lakeland, FL
    You should give them at least 20% protein...no wonder they're "too small."

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