Meat chickens

PatriotShar

Chirping
Feb 17, 2017
36
32
59
I'm new at this & this is my 1st batch ??of 10
I'm being told that I need to now feed my chickens (just finished 2nd bag of "starter crumbles") turkey finisher ??crumbles?? The only finisher I'm finding is pellets ??
Anyone raising meat chickens out there have any advise? I'm not sure what I'm doing & beginning to wonder if my ?coach? knows what he's talking about ??
 

RUNuts

Smiling. I'm up to something.
May 19, 2017
6,374
46,897
1,017
Swamps of Texas
Lots of opinions on this one. I'm watching.

From my research, I'm picking up CX birds this week, some keep on high protein for fast growth. But they become lethargic because their mass out grows their strength. I want to compare these to the Barred Rock so will raise mine in a tractor with grass access to see how they do.

I like @Birdinhand 's posts. Worth a read. I believe he sticks with 16 or 18% feed and has healthier chickens by keeping them full and forcing activity. He also has a more active (can I say better? Again opinion) genetics. Are you restricting feed?

What do you want? Mushy veal chickens that sit around with no muscle tone or active firmer chickens? If so, stick with grocery store. They have large economy chickens and do it cheaper than we can. Define goal and set path to achieve it.

I've raised hatchery Barred Rocks to the table and the taste pleases me more than grocery store CX. Think more wild game taste compared to farm raised.

Whatever path you choose, best wishes and I'd love to hear what you decided.
 

Birdinhand

Crowing
May 23, 2016
1,113
1,764
277
Pacific Northwest
so my latest conclusion, after reading The Behavioral Biology of Chickens and getting an Mother Heating Pad for my grow outs is that true sleep is actually more important to preventing leg problems and heart problems than holding back feed. the MHP allows them to actually sleep, preventing them from getting up and running over each other constantly throughout the night. I give free access to food 24/7 but of course they take a break at night when it's break. I do about 10 days of chicks starter and then switch to a organic grower formula. I have found that if they have loose watery droppings that it's best to have some lower protein feed on hand to mix in. too much protein can be hard on their digestion. often just a break from the high protein will be enough to firm things up.
 

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