Meaties will be here in the morning!

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by ngamtnman, Aug 23, 2011.

  1. ngamtnman

    ngamtnman Out Of The Brooder

    May 18, 2011
    North GA
    Well, after a 2 1/2 month wait, the meaties will finally be here in the morning. The hot Georgia heat is finally letting up some. I've got the brooder pen fired up and ready; food and water is already out. This is my first batch of Cornish x I've ever done. I have done regular birds before and, in fact, I have about 15 of them to process the weekend after labor day.

    My plan is to keep them in the brooder pen for no more than 3 weeks. I'm going to start limiting their food week 3 when I get them out to pasture. Starting about half way through the second week I'm going to turn the heat lamp off at night to get them used to not having it.

    I plan to process them in October, either the 15th or 22nd. And I will be feeding them 20% protein the whole time.

    Does it sound like I'm ready to go or am I missing anything?

    And I want to send a big thanks to everyone on here posting their knowledge and expirences with the Cornish x , I have learned a lot reading this forum over the last 3 months.
  2. hydroswiftrob

    hydroswiftrob Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 18, 2011
    N. Texas
    My Coop
    The knowledge here is definitely abundant. Just when I think I have read everything, I find another thread that brings more info.

    Good luck with the x's, I plan to start next year.
  3. ngamtnman

    ngamtnman Out Of The Brooder

    May 18, 2011
    North GA
    Post office called at 6:15 this morning and said the chicks had arrived. I got up there around 9:30 and brought them straight home and put them in the brooder pen. I ordered 25 Cornish x and 5 easter eggers for the fiance (she doesn't like chickens but when I told her what kind of eggs they lay, she said she might like them [​IMG]). Meyer sent 26 Cornish and 5 EE. All were alive but one cornish looked really weak and ended up dying a hour and half later. The rest are all doing great, up running around and eating.
  4. 4-H chicken mom

    4-H chicken mom Overrun With Chickens

    Aug 3, 2007
    Oberlin, OH
    Congrats and good luck. Look out for that hurricane. [​IMG]
  5. ngamtnman

    ngamtnman Out Of The Brooder

    May 18, 2011
    North GA
    I figured I'd give an update and share my experience since I noticed several other members planning to do cornish x for the first time next spring.

    I had 5 die in the first 48 hours. I did notice a few that seemed to be a little weak (they would either lay down or stand with their eyes closed while the others ran around) when I first put them in the brooder but I thought they would be alright after a day or two. Well I was wrong. I'm thinking I should have put a vitamin and electrolyte mix in their water and I didn't.

    The rest seem to be doing great now. You can tell the meats birds are lazy and poop a lot, lol. They get up and run to the water and feeder and gorge themselves and then walk back to the heat lamp (I have the heat on the other side of the brooder pen from the feed and water to force them to get up and move) and lay down again.

    So next spring when I do another batch I will put electrolytes in their water for the first two or three days.
  6. Bluff Country Chicken

    Bluff Country Chicken Out Of The Brooder

    Feb 3, 2011
    SE MN
    Did you put any sugar in the water? I've put 12 tbspns per gallon in the past for the first couple days. I don't know if it's the reason or not, but I've had pretty decent survival rates.
  7. ngamtnman

    ngamtnman Out Of The Brooder

    May 18, 2011
    North GA
    No I didn't put anything in the water when I first got them. I ordered some electrolyte mix to use next spring when I do a batch.

    I haven't lost anymore; they all seem to be thriving very well now.
  8. WishboneDawn

    WishboneDawn Out Of The Brooder

    Jun 19, 2011
    Nova Scotia, Canada
    I think you're right about the vitamin and electrolyte mix. It's pretty stressful being shipped and that's a big help to them.

    Go easy on the lazy thing, poor guys. They get a bad rap for this but honestly, that's probably part of why they grow so fast!

    What you're doing sounds a lot like what we did. I think after 5 weeks or so we stopped the 12 on/12 off pattern of feeding and just went out severa times a day and dumped a big bunch of feed on the lawn (they were free during the day). After that they roamed the lawn for extra protein. I also found that made them much more active and hardy then I'd been led to expect. At 10 weeks they finished at 6-8 lbs dressed so it seemed to have worked! [​IMG]
  9. mcf3kids

    mcf3kids Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 24, 2011
    I put the electrolyte supplement in all chicks water for the entire first wee (layers or meat) - knock on wood I have only lost one each batch. Hoping my next batch of 30 (9/7) will have a 100% success rate. It is def. a learning process. Fresh water and fresh food and cleaning the brooder/tractor daily have been key. Good luck - it is a pretty cool process - start to finish!
  10. Tracydr

    Tracydr Chillin' With My Peeps

    That's more than I usually lose in a shipment, although if I have Banties shipped I sometimes lose a high percent. They are just so tiny that I don't think they have as much reserves for the shipping process.
    I usually do the electrolyte/vitamin mix and sugar. I stop the sugar after the first few days. I'm going to add yogurt and organic apple cider vinegar on my next batch, since I never use medicated feed, although I don't think I've ever had a coccidiosis problem.
    I also start feeding fenugreek and mung bean sprouts the first week. They are a great source of all sorts of vitamins and minerals, as well as proteins. Plus, fenugreek has been shown to increase appetite and weight gain.
    Make sure you add a little fine grit if you add greens or sprouts.
    I get my second batch of broilers in three weeks! 6 red broilers and 10 Cornish X from Ideal.

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