My Meyer Hatchery Meat Birds. The Conclusion.

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by LoneCowboy, Nov 13, 2008.

  1. LoneCowboy

    LoneCowboy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 26, 2007
    Longmont, CO
    So it's been 8 weeks and I just picked up my meat birds from the processor. I thought I'd share my experience so maybe we can all learn from each other.

    I purchased 52 meat chickens from Meyer Hatchery. They were the cheapest so I thought I'd give them a try.

    Somebody on the forum stated that their Meyer hatchery chickens did not grow as fast as their other meat chickens. However, they were feeding them squash and such. Just so you know, this was not my experience. At 8 weeks of age the average processed weight was 4lbs 8oz. That's pretty good. My Ideal chickens at 7.5 weeks averaged 4lbs even.

    I ended up with only 40 chickens in the end. I didn't have any gimpy chickens like last time but they had a very high death rate. Purple chicken has also experienced this problem as well as a lady here in town. So the high death rate is something to think about.

    My processor recommended that I use Welp hatchery. They have people all over raising chickens for them and they use Welp and have had a good survival rate.

    Now, mine tended to get Cocci a lot. I use a chicken tractor so I move them everyday to a clean spot but still they got sick. Even though I medicated them, I was still losing them at a high rate. I lost 6 in one week and they were being medicated.

    I read some where that the meds deplete the vitamins in the birds in order to kill the Cocci. So I thought if that was the case then maybe they needed a boost. So I gave them a very little yogurt and I added broiler booster to their water for only one day (I give it to them regularly for the first 3 weeks but this was the 6th week) Anyway, it really boosted them and I never lost another chicken after that.

    I was thinking I was going to do really well because I didn't lose any to illness until the 4th week. I don't know if it's because I stopped the broiler booster at that point or not, I doubt it. I just think they got sick and I didn't catch it as quickly as usual. Anyway, this was my experience and I thought I'd share it incase it helps somebody else.
     
  2. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    Sounds like a pretty good turn out!

    The meds in most medicated feeds inhibit the growth of the cocci protozoa by inhibiting the uptake of thamine. This also works on the things in the birds and can reduce their uptake of thamine. I want to say the feeds with the meds increase the thamine to make up for it to the bird. However, since the meds don't kill the cocci, and instead just stop them from reproducing, sounds like cocci is just really bad in your area. It gets bad here too if I do chicks late summer/fall since warm moist summer soil = happy cocci here.
     
  3. bkbuz1987

    bkbuz1987 Out Of The Brooder

    86
    0
    39
    Aug 29, 2008
    Colorado
    Lonecowboy,

    What processor did you use? Is there a minimum number of birds they'll do for you?

    Thanks,

    Becky
     
  4. greyfields

    greyfields Overrun With Chickens

    4,889
    16
    261
    Mar 15, 2007
    Washington State
    I live in coccidiossis heaven. I've never had good luck with the Cornish X because of that. But, regardless, I think it's really awesome what you've done.

    I just took 15 geese, 8 ducks and 15 broilers into the processor today. I'm in poultry heaven tonight.
     
  5. MissPrissy

    MissPrissy Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

    24,442
    47
    371
    May 7, 2007
    Forks, Virginia
    Good job. I have always had a good success with the jumbos from MM. never had a mortality or leg issue to date.

    Let us know how they taste!
     
  6. Bassleg

    Bassleg Chillin' With My Peeps

    414
    2
    131
    Jul 25, 2008
    Lebanon Oregon
    greyfield I live in coccidiossis heaven. I've never had good luck with the Cornish X because of that. But, regardless, I think it's really awesome what you've done.


    What is your best meat chicken breed?
     
  7. LoneCowboy

    LoneCowboy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 26, 2007
    Longmont, CO
    Quote:Nope, no minimum. I use Northern Colorado Poultry in Nunn. It's a long drive, but they take good care of me. There is another place in Fort Collins that's .20 cheaper and it's closer, but they didn't return my phone call and that makes me cranky. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2008
  8. M&J IL

    M&J IL Out Of The Brooder

    20
    0
    22
    Apr 3, 2007
    Rockford Illinois
    Hi

    I had very good luck with Meyer hatchery broilers this year. I raised 100 this year in four batches of 25. The 1st batch I lost two in shipping and one at around 5 weeks. 2nd batch I lost one only to a mishap in the barn on my part. 3rd batch I lost one around 3 weeks and one in shipping. The last batch is now at 5 weeks, I lost one the first day and none since.

    I found out that it works well for me to give them all the food they want during the day and I take up the food at night. I use Purina Flock Raiser Feed. I give them as much water as they want and by 5 weeks the want alot. My birds are barn raised, due do raccoon and fox problems. I make sure there bedding is always clean and changed as needed.

    The 1st batch at 8 weeks was over 6# AVG, the 2nd batch was 4.5# AVG at 7 weeks, 3rd batch was 6.08# AVE at 9 weeks and the last batch is going to also be large.

    Note the smaller average for my 2nd batch was due in part to almost all birds being hens, also it was the heat of summer.

    I would recommend Meyer hatchery to anyone for meat birds and layers alike. I have used ideal, cackle, and Murry McMurry and had good luck also.YourLinkGoesHere
     
  9. coondog74017

    coondog74017 Out Of The Brooder

    48
    0
    22
    Jun 14, 2008
    I got 15 cornixh cross from Ideal and didn't loose any they weighed 5 lbs at 6 weeks only had leg problem with one and they will be 7 wks this wednesday and they are huge I kept them on boiler booster from Mac murray every day and now they eat 50 lbs every other day so it time for them to go.
     
  10. LoneCowboy

    LoneCowboy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 26, 2007
    Longmont, CO
    M&J IL I did mine exactly the way you did yours except I have them in a tractor that I move around, and not in the barn. We seem to have a lot of problems with Cocci with meat birds here. I don't know what Purple Chicken decided his problem was with them. We might have gotten a weak bunch or something. Maybe the stress of shipping this far had an impact. I've not had this big a problem with them before. However, they did turn out just fine. But losing 12 does cut into the budget a bit. Like $162 worth considering I sell them for $3 a lb. [​IMG]
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by