My Kennel, My Chicken House

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by WVDan44, Aug 11, 2011.

  1. WVDan44

    WVDan44 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a really first class kennel set up at my place. Insulated, vinyl siding, heat, a/c, hot/cold running water, laundry, stereo, built by contractor. There are 8 runs on each side, but I'm only using six total now. I'm wanting to buy Cornish X's and I am wondering if a concrete floor both indoors and out would be okay if sufficient layers of litter were used. This would save lots of money vs constructing a new pen and I could control their indoor environmental needs much better. I could make a cheap-to-build chicken tractor to allow them access to grass and weeds during the day while I'm at home, and put them in the outside run of the kennel which I would predator-proof when I'm not home. There would be a gang plank with a rise of about 8 inches for them to use for going back and forth indoors/outdoors. I would probably not use litter on the outside run so that cleaning it off with a hose would be easier, unless everyone thinks I should use litter. I just wonder if a bare concrete floor will cause their legs to "splay" out more easily. I kept small dogs so the inside compartments are 4x4 and the outside are 4x10. If I order 25 chicks, how soon would I need to expand from one 4x4 to multiples and how much space would they need at week 7 if most of them survive? Also, should I order all hens and keep them longer, or roosters? I don't plan on caponizing so I wondered it hens would be better in the long run? More feed vs expense of castration, or just get straight run and forget about it. This will be my first meat bird venture.
     
  2. WVDan44

    WVDan44 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Okay, that was a lot of questions to answer at once, Im sorry for it you all. I had my wife type it shes much better typer than I am. I figgered out the space i will need and a plan to have the area where I will keep the birds from the rest of the kennel so there won't be no stress on anybody. I decided to buy all roosters and forget it. I will look on here to see if I can find any talk about concrete. Thanks for your patence. I am a slow learner.
     
  3. ctbagley

    ctbagley Out Of The Brooder

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    I have found that chickens are happiest when they are digging around in dirt/sand/weeds etc. I would use the deep litter method on top of your concrete. I had a stonedust/gravel base that was very hard in my pen. We bought 20 bags of topsoil (plain soil, no additives), 10 bags of compressed pine shavings and 10 bags of playground sand. This was in a 10 x 20 pen. I opened and spread the various materials and mixed it together with a heavy rake. The sand I concentrated on won large corner of the pen (on top of the other substrate). Later I mixed in diatomaceous earth/fireplace ashes for that area. This allows them to take dust baths to help eliminate pests, keep them clean and very happy. I'd say you need to have at least 10 inches of litter to begin with. The chickens will scratch and mix it so that we never have any smell or fly problems. Every two months I had a couple bags of topsoil and shavings. This is a very easy and effective way to keep the chickens. Hope this helps some! [​IMG]
     
  4. Mac in Wisco

    Mac in Wisco Antagonist

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    Concrete is fine. I am keeping meat birds in a stall in our old dairy barn with a concrete floor. I started the chicks on pine shavings and when they were ready to leave the brooder ring I just spread hay around. Unless you really want them out on the grass they will do just fine in the kennel.

    I'd put them in a 4x4 pen until they are 2-3 weeks old and then split them to two separate 4x4 pens.

    I just buy straight run. Caponizing roosters isn't necessary.
     
  5. WVDan44

    WVDan44 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you both for your kind reply. it is very helpful. I now have it so the chickens could be on ground insted of concrete if i make a new fence in the yard. so i might just do what hyou suggest Mac. These meat birds woulnt be around for long about 7 weeks so don't think we need to go to far with so much \\differnt kins of soil and litter on the oytside run. Cornish xs would be able to walk up and down a plank or will they get to big, its about 8 inches high and 3 foot long on each side of the door. Mac how many birds do you keep at a time in those two 4/4 spaces. Thanks again.
     
  6. mcf3kids

    mcf3kids Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Straight run is cheapest and by the time they are ready to process it won't matter if they are roos or hens. My roos are ready this week to process (7 1/2 wks) and the hens I will let go another week just to let them grow a little longer. I don't think my cornish would waddle up a plank they are pretty chubby and waddle. You could try a batch on the concrete and adjust as you go. You may need to put some straw or hay onto the concrete to protect their chests which they plunk down and rest on a lot. Mine have very little feathering on their undersides and I would wonder if the concrete would aggravate their skin. I would go for it and just adjust as you go through the process. Have fun and good luck!!
     
  7. WVDan44

    WVDan44 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That helps alot thank you. no ramp, just build up in fromt of the door on both sides, good idea. i think I am ready to go for it.
     

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