New to raising Meat Bird

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by ang13, Mar 18, 2013.

  1. ang13

    ang13 Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 18, 2013
    I purchased 5 pan fry chicks from Orshelins. New too the whole experience of raising chickens. Wondering how long do u raise them before eating? Im guessing a year but see between 5-8 weeks from what I am reading but that's just barely old enough when they go from inside too a barn without a heat lamp?Mine are just now a week. Also, do they not lay at all? Wondering why people don't get a rooster and just keep breeding them? So many silly questions. I do have bantam, and American chickens I bought which are egg eating layers. I just cant tell which bantam-I have 2 is the rooster. Hard too tell the difference.
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2013
  2. my sunwolf

    my sunwolf Chillin' With My Peeps

    Welcome to BYC!!

    A Fry Pan special is often a mixed bag of breeds the hatchery couldn't sell, sometimes heavy bodied and sometimes not. These are usually not your fast-growing meat hybrid, though it does depend on the source. From what I can see of Orscheln Farm, they're selling various slow growing breeds.

    You can butcher anytime. I like to process before 6 months because they are less flavorful and more tender. Size of carcass will depend on breed. Wyandottes I processed at 4 months and had 3 pound carcasses with a lot of breast meat. Easter Eggers I processed at almost 5 months and had 3-4 pound carcasses with slim breasts but huge thighs. You raise these birds just like any other chicken, so check the section Raising Baby Chicks to find out more info.

    If the Fry Pan special contains Cornish cross chickens, you will have to process before 9 weeks, though some can live up to 1 year and some people have reported them living longer. Their short lives are because they will have heart attacks or other health issues due to their size. They produce 6+ pound carcasses at 9 weeks. You can take them off the heat lamp at 2 weeks old and keep them at 70˚F until 2.5-3 weeks. At this time, move them out to a coop with a heat lamp for another week (more or less), then you can put them in a grow-out pen without heat until it's time to slaughter. Really depends on your weather when you can move them from one temp to the other, but the rule is to harden them off as if they were seedlings.

    If you need help sexing your other chickens, check out the What Breed or Gender is This? page.
  3. ang13

    ang13 Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 18, 2013
    Thanks! That helps a lot!! One more question...when raising baby chicks in the brooder house I have put in a typical chick water dish from Orshelins. They keep getting it full of pine shavings so I am cleaning it out 4-8 times daily!! How can I stop that problem?
  4. mstricer

    mstricer Overrun With Chickens

    Feb 12, 2009
    Raise it to back level. They do that when thet are dusting and scratching.
  5. PSJ

    PSJ Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 15, 2011
    Sabine Parish, La
    I put a small block of wood under mine to raise them up
  6. my sunwolf

    my sunwolf Chillin' With My Peeps

    We use two bricks, and keep stacking higher until they're ready for cinderblock height [​IMG] Sometimes it just means cleaning out the waterer as often as you can. Good luck!

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