non-cross or hybrid meat birds to breed?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by digbychris, Dec 7, 2017.

  1. digbychris

    digbychris Chirping

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    Might be a dumb question, idk. I raised my first meat birds this past spring and just chose the Cornish cross I could buy at the farm store. Now, I'm no sappy pushover or anything, but I couldn't stand the fact that I could tell these birds were in pain for most of their short life. So, I decided that when I do it again I would opt for a ranger hybrid or some slower growing breed. Which led me to the idea of breeding a few of my own. With a plucker it'd be easy to always have a few birds in the freezer. I don't have too much of a hangup over feed costs or time to mature, etc. I'll decide early on which ones will be kept for meat so they don't eat layer feed.
    But, is there a meat breed that someone can recommend that I could incubate/hatch and raise? I could just continue with a good DP breed like my australorps since I'll always want some eggs as well, I guess. What I find from the factory hatcheries as far as meat breeds are all crosses/hybrids (idk the difference). Farm stores don't get too creative in chicks they buy, of course.
    Anyway, Yall are probably tired of seeing my posts, sorry if so! I've had chickens for several years but I enjoy learning new things about them and expanded what I do.
     
  2. Redhead Rae

    Redhead Rae Chickens, chickens everywhere!

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    I just bought a trio of Dark Cornish birds. I like eating my roosters, but they don't have a lot of meat on them. These chickens have a LOT of meat on them. I intend to breed them and eat the culls. They are pretty nice tempered birds as well.
    IMG_6242.jpg
     
  3. digbychris

    digbychris Chirping

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    Wow, they're very pretty also!
     
  4. cavemanrich

    cavemanrich Crossing the Road

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    First time I see your posts and nobody should get tired of anyone asking questions. What you don't know needs answers. Stay with Dual Purpose and eat the roosters early on. Keep the hens and eat when past prime on laying. Your hatching will average 50/50. I also suggest that you feed ALL your chickens one feed. Make it simple. I use Alflock which is 2% calcium since not all my hens are laying. I provide cracked oyster shells free-choice The chickens know what they need and take in randomly. I do not have soft shell issues with the chickens that lay.
    WISHING YOU BEST.....:thumbsup
     
  5. Brahma Chicken5000

    Brahma Chicken5000 Araucana Addict

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    Jersey giants are a good dual purpose breed.
     
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  6. digbychris

    digbychris Chirping

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    Thanks! Except for the winter, my birds free range and that includes a gravel drive, pasture, etc and I don't offer oyster shells. This time of year when they are cooped up I do, or if happen to get a couple of soft shells I'll toss some out in their run.
    I'll look for the alflock when the time comes, believe me I like to keep things as simple as possible but I thought the feeds/protein level requirements were different for meat vs layers.
     
  7. rjohns39

    rjohns39 Enabler

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    The only real difference is driven by the CX. When you raise CX birds, you want to slow their growth and to do that they are typically fed a broiler or grower mix of about 18% protein and 1% calcium throughout their life.

    When feeding a DP bird, I typically start them on a 22% starter for 3-4 weeks, then move them to broiler/grower and keep them on that until they've grown out. Then depending on what I'm doing, time of year, etc I'll move them to a low calcium layer 16% protein 5% calcium or keep them on the grower. Any cockerels I've pulled out for culling will go onto a finisher designed to build up fat for the last 30 days.

    I do use a custom blend for roosters (kept in the bachelor pad) and layers starting 30 days before breeding and continuing on the layer once breed sets are in the breeding quarters. These blends are designed to optimize hatch rates and make for healthier chicks.
     
  8. Redhead Rae

    Redhead Rae Chickens, chickens everywhere!

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    What type of finisher/rooster/breeder mixes do you make? What percentages of macro and micro-nutrients do you make sure they contain? I have supplements to alter Protein or fat ratios but I'm not sure what would be a good for each.
     
  9. rjohns39

    rjohns39 Enabler

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    Sorry for the formatting

    Meat Bird Finisher
    Ingredients: Amounts:

    CORN 7.0% (GRD) 965
    SOYBEANS ROASTED 650
    BARLEY 9% (GRD) 300
    POULTRY NB DL 60
    LIMESTONE 37% Ca 25
    Formula Totals: 2,000

    Nutrient: Units:
    CRUDE PROTEIN 17.2 %
    CRUDE FAT 8.25 %
    CRUDE FIBER 4.32 %
    CALCIUM 0.99 %
    PHOSPHORUS 0.68 %
    SALT (ADDED) 0.32 %
    SODIUM 0.14 %
    M.E. (PLTY) 1405 KCAL/LB
    VITAMIN A 4.66 KIU/LB
    VITAMIN D 1.61 KIU/LB
    VIT. E (ADDED) 50 IU/LB
    LYSINE 0.92 %
    METHIONINE 0.37 %
    METH + CYSTINE 0.56 %
    MANGANESE 92.1 PPM
    ZINC 70.6 PPM
    IRON 64.6 PPM
    COPPER 5.6 PPM
    IODINE 3.8 PPM
    SELENIUM 0.32 PPM

    Meat Bird Finisher should be fed to both the pullets and cockerels that were not selected for breeding replacement stock. This formula is designed for rapid weight gain and body fat depositing, which will allow for a more flavorful taste.
     
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  10. Redhead Rae

    Redhead Rae Chickens, chickens everywhere!

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    What if I don't use soy at all. Are there other supplements I could use?
     
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