questions about raising Meat ckicks

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by lexapurple, Mar 7, 2008.

  1. lexapurple

    lexapurple Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 8, 2008
    I have 18 5day old baby chicks : 5 cornish rocks, 5 red broilers and 8 various dual purpose males.
    1. I feed them game bird chick starter with 24% protein. Is it O.K. or is it too much protein?
    2.When do I need to switch them to finisher and do I need to do that?
    3. When do I need to raise their feeder? They already start to lay down around it while they eat.
    4. I was told to withold their feed at night starting at 5 days. I go to bed around 10pm and get up at 8am, if I take their food away before I go bed and put it out would it be ok for them to go that long without food?
    5. I have broilers and dual purpose chicks together and broilers are getting bigger than dual purpose ones. Should I separate them to different brooders or they would be fine all together?
    Thank you
     
  2. seymojo536

    seymojo536 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 16, 2007
    Central Ohio
    1. The %protein is good. It's important to get them off to a good start.
    2. You can keep them on the starter the whole time, we switch to finisher the last 2 weeks.
    3. The lip of the feeder should be at the height of the bird's back.
    4. Restricting feed is only necessary for the cornish crosses. Do you have a light on at night? If you take their feed away they'll be OK till the morning, just don't forget them.
    5. IMO I would seperate them, restrict the broilers' feed and let the others eat all they want all the time.
    Good questions, there's a lot of fine details that we all have had to learn. This is the place to ask.
     
  3. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    In addition, your dual purposes will take nearly twice as long to have any meat on them. So be prepared to keep them around for more than 8 weeks.
     
  4. lexapurple

    lexapurple Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 8, 2008
    Thank you for advise, seymojo and silkiechicken!
    I do have red heat lamp on them at all times and they get natural light thru the windows during the day.
    I am planning to butcher broilers at 8-10 wks old and dual purpose ones at 12-16. I realy liked "gamey" texture of an older dual rooster we had, and I want to see what would work for me and compare different meat birds for future reference.
    Aleksandra
     
  5. FarmGirl01

    FarmGirl01 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 5, 2008
    AR
    I got 25 Red Broilers the end of January. So far they are doing great. I feed mine the meat bird ration from start to finish. It is non-medicated. I let the feed run out about 10:00 and feed them again in the morning. I find the Red Broilers to be much more active than the Cornish X's. Keep us informed on the difference in the kinds you are raising. It can be very interesting.
     
  6. tomsgonefishin

    tomsgonefishin Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 27, 2007
    Raleigh, North Carolina
    Hi,
    I have 7 cornish X's and I am letting them eat all they want. I have them on Purina Start and Grow 18% protien. They are 4 weeks old now and the largest bird is 3.6 lbs. Should I slow them down a bit or let them have at it?

    Thanks
    Tom
     
  7. FarmGirl01

    FarmGirl01 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 5, 2008
    AR
    Most people that I have talked to suggest that you let them run out of food at the end of the day. It helps to slow the growth down. It seems to work well for me. I have noticed that it cuts down on leg problems and sudden death.
     
  8. tomsgonefishin

    tomsgonefishin Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 27, 2007
    Raleigh, North Carolina
    Is the 18% start and grow sufficient? I've seen articles that say to use 20 - 23% protien feed, but I can't seem to find that around here.

    Thanks
     
  9. FarmGirl01

    FarmGirl01 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 5, 2008
    AR
    I have used the 18% protein before. It worked for me. There for a while that was all I could find. The game bird ration has a higher percentage.
     
  10. lynxpilot

    lynxpilot Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 19, 2008
    I've never had a cornish cross die suddenly and have always had food available for them 24 hrs/day. I butcher them at 8 weeks and can't imagine them having heart or leg problems that quickly. Not to worry.
     

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