Raising Meat Birds:- ( fail :-(

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by eggscetera, Mar 31, 2012.

  1. eggscetera

    eggscetera Out Of The Brooder

    Nov 12, 2011
    Palmer, Alaska
    I optomistically kept four Ranger hens and a Ranger roo to overwinter. Wanted to incubate and raise my own meat birds. Had a great space for them out in the greenhouse. Heated it all winter and kept the water from freezing. Fed them all winter long. One hen died early on - Heart attack?. Two more hens bit the dust in February- their combs turned blue. More heart attacks? Anyway- now I've got a roo and a hen. Just in time for spring incubation my hen stops laying. What do I have to show for all the hours spent tending my birds and paying for feed and heat all winter long? A single meat chick. Just one. One egg went into the incubator before the Ranger hen stopped laying. Failed experiment. From now on I just buy meat chicks in the spring. Or maybe I can incubate some.
    Does anybody have any fertile eggs from meat breeds that I could incubate?
  2. Matrix Escapee

    Matrix Escapee Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 21, 2011
    It's all in how you look at it. Those who never try are the failures. Never stop experimenting. Don't give up. Research and improve. Think of the time before you ever owned your first chicken. Now think of all of the things you know now. Raising your own breeding flock might just take you some more time, experience, and finding the right questions to ask and then find the answers to.
    Good luck to you.
    1 person likes this.
  3. SIMZ

    SIMZ Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 29, 2011
    Northwest Indiana
    Great perspective, Matrix. (Great name, too!)

    I'm so sorry your experiment didn't go as you expected. Matrix said it best.
  4. sonew123

    sonew123 Poultry Snuggie

    Mar 16, 2009
    onchiota NY
    Sad way to learn;( Sorry...remember you cannot breed two meatbirds like that...they will not breed true...it takes two different breeds to create those birds...mating them back to eacther WILL produce chicks...but they will not be meatbirds;(
  5. 4-H chicken mom

    4-H chicken mom Overrun With Chickens

    Aug 3, 2007
    Oberlin, OH

    Ditto on that. :thumbsup I feel it is not worth the expenses or the hassles, just buy your meat chicks in the spring and be done with them in 8 wks.
  6. eggscetera

    eggscetera Out Of The Brooder

    Nov 12, 2011
    Palmer, Alaska
    Oh thank you Matrix for those words of wisdom. You're right. It was a good (albeit fruitless) experience. I was just discouraged because I was counting my meat chicks before the eggs were even laid.

    On the plus side, my young layers are churning out the eggs. My egg business is flourishing. Selling my eggs almost pays for the feed. And I've almost paid for the incubator I bought last fall by selling my layer chicks. My second hatch is due in just a week. And these will be GREAT layers. It's the meat bird part that was a failure- but then no experience is really a failure if you learn from your mistakes. Perhaps I will try again with meat birds. Maybe a different breed (or a different winter- we had harsh temps and tons of snow) will bring different results. Thanks again for reminding me of that.
  7. eggscetera

    eggscetera Out Of The Brooder

    Nov 12, 2011
    Palmer, Alaska
    Poultry Snuggie - I was NOT aware that meat birds didn't breed true. See- I AM learning from this experience!
    I do have the one meat chick. S/he's bigger than the rest. It will be interesting to see what this big little bird turns into.
  8. eggscetera

    eggscetera Out Of The Brooder

    Nov 12, 2011
    Palmer, Alaska
    4-H Chicken mom- yes, I think you're right. Easiest way to go for the meat birds.
  9. Rivers

    Rivers Out Of The Brooder

    Oct 3, 2010
    Well it depends on what breed. If its a hybrid then no it wont. But if pure breed yes. I dont think many people consider pure breeds viable in comparison to stuff like cornish crosses though. And even with the mixed up offspring of hybrids, you may get some big birds among them.
  10. enel 1

    enel 1 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 19, 2012
    eastern washington
    if your interested in hatching your own meat birds,Dunlap hatchery out of southern Idaho sells both cornish cross eggs(.85 cents apiece)and red ranger eggs for a few cents more. i have a dozen of each in the bator now. all there air sacks were in tact but then again i only live 300 miles away. theres some good info on here for hatching shipped eggs,there a little more difficult to hatch than eggs from your own flock. good luck

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