Raising our 1st set of CX meaties

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by Angelicisi, Oct 29, 2013.

  1. Angelicisi

    Angelicisi Overrun With Chickens

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    My names Chris, I'm a chicken addict.
    Started with 2 free pullets for a few eggs a week.
    Needed more eggs, found out some laid colored eggs-that was the turning point of my addiction. I Needed a blue layer! Then I became the chicken lady-rescues were given to me, more building was done, more land allotted for the girls lol I found a breeder of Ameraucana-blue eggs! Got some chicks.
    Had a bully hen that was literally tormenting the flock.
    So, we culled her. My husband is the rabbit man wasn't all about the chickies like I was but him being a natural DIY-er so a plucker and cleaning station was easy peasy. Then we ate her...it was all over at that point. I had brought my hubby over to the dark side with one chicken dinner...home raised chicken.

    I got a text from the hubby early last week. (yup, a text!)
    "25 CX will be here Friday-make it so #1"

    Oh Crap! Wait waaaaaa?
    Hahahaha like an addict asks questions!
    I set up my brooders, started a batch of fermented chick feed and read. And read. And read. Then I called grandma and picked her brain (she was the only one to embrace me AND my addiction O.O
    Everyone else gives me the goat eye when I must vent about the chickens) lol.

    So 27 CX chicks arrived Friday. 25 ordered, 27 sent. Two were Packing peanuts and the smallest runtiest cute lil guys. Sadly the two packing peanuts did not make it :( shipping being bounced around, stress from move? I dunno. No physical signs, clear eyes/beak/vents. Failure to thrive maybe. It was sad for me but I see 1st hand now confirmation of my studies on raising meaties.
    The other 25 are thriving on day 3 with us. Doing great, eating like I have never seen a bird eat and drinking near a gallon a day.
    So far, pretty easy to maintain.
    1x per day water change & bedding scooped out and replaced and a vent check done on chicks (horror stories of pasty butt)
    2x per day they are fed fermented feed of chick starter 20% with ACV and offered a scoop of dry crumble on side for the 3 chicks that seem to be snubbing the FF feed.
    At 2 weeks they will go out to their pen/coop outside and go on a 12/12 feed schedule with 8 hours daily to free range.

    This thread is sorta for me to keep info in the same place :)

    Here are the Nuggets!

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  2. pipemum

    pipemum Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm in week 4 of my first CXs. I only have 8. So far, so good. Fermented feed from day 1. They're in a 5x6' most of the day, but they do get to forage about the yard 2x a day. I feed them twice a day. A big serving in the morning, plus a couple of handfuls of scratch to keep them busy. I don't get back home until the evening, and they are HUNGRY. So they get a smaller serving of FF and roam about the garden for a while. Well, roam first, and then I lure them back in with their food. They are very food motivated-- remind me of my lab.

    In another 4 weeks I'll be getting 13 more CX. I have to keep to small batches since I have limited food storage space, and a limited area for the live birds.

    Congrats on your first 25!
     
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  3. Angelicisi

    Angelicisi Overrun With Chickens

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    Good job! 4 weeks and doing well is great to hear.Having too many can be worse than having to few! 25 is a Big # for me all at one time lol but the fact that they grow so fast and are born to be eaten makes it easier for me to handle larger numbers without feeling I'm too stretched lol If this goes well we may do another batch in Jan of 50. Feed family, neighbors and us :) we figured we should work our way up to make sure we can keep it cost effective and healthy birds.
    Keep me updated on your flock! Feel free to post here your stuff, chickies, feed or anything you may want to reference later? I dunno this is a new adventure for me with bigger #s so I need to make sure I stay outta the red cost wise lol, unless you have a thread, I'd be happy to check it out! Imma a sponge for knowledge and whew there was a lot to cram for some meaties lol
     
  4. pipemum

    pipemum Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks, I would like to thread crash here! I told myself I wasn't going to keep track of how much the meat chickens were going to cost, but I'm bored at work and ran up some numbers. So far, these 8 CX have cost about $10.50 per bird. The figure includes everything like pine shavings and a bag of scratch. I live in a low cost of living city, but according to the cheap feed prices I see people post here, any city living seems to be more expensive than country when it comes to agricultural costs.

    I think they'll go through one more bag of feed before they're ready for processing, so I'm looking at a total cost of around $13.25 per bird, assuming they all make it till butcher day.

    The next little batch of meaties will be feed with organic feed, which will add another $1.25 per bird. I dunno if that's expensive or not, seems like it is but at this point I'm doing it more about health than expenses.
     
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  5. Angelicisi

    Angelicisi Overrun With Chickens

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    I'm hoping for around $7/$8 per bird.
    I need to lay out some numbers lol
    We had a lot of material for brooders and pens on hand as well as bedding materials.
    I ferment my chickens feed and save on feed. Less mess, less needed, more health benefits and less stinky poos!
    I'll be starting free range about 2 weeks of age. A large outdoor pen is available on days we can't range them for any reason so I hope to cut down on feed a tiny bit with them outdoors.

    So far we've only had to buy feed & chicks.
    Im in the South, still sorta nice out (80 degree days) and a 75 watt brooder light (repurposed shop light we already had) has been added for the couple nights it dropped to upper 40's.
     
  6. pipemum

    pipemum Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yeah, the FF saves on feed costs for sure. I'm in the southwest, nights are 50s and days are 80s. I moved the chicks outside at 1.5 weeks with no heat (no way to heat without fire danger, and they were way too stinky inside, even in the garage, even on FF). I covered up their pen at night for a week, and they've been uncovered at night for the past week or so now. They generate a ton of heat, so they've been fine. Since I moved them outside, there's been no stink at all. I thought they were reeking this weekend, but there was a huge dead lizard behind the straw bales, so whew, not the meaties stinking!
     
  7. Angelicisi

    Angelicisi Overrun With Chickens

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    Yay no meatie stink lol

    We're on day 5 here...so far the 25 are all doing great.

    Can almost literally watch them grow. Wing feathers are coming in, they are brought out for sunshine during the day and are already Sun bathing. I had to run my hand over them a few times because I thought they were dead - they were just all sprawled out asleep lol mini heart attack #2 on day 5 doh.
     
  8. Angelicisi

    Angelicisi Overrun With Chickens

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    Mar 26, 2013
    Baton Rouge area
    My Coop
    I lost a chick last night :(
    Examined it thoroughly and saw nothing external, clean vent, closed eyes but no leakage/ swelling.
    Became lathargic and within 2 hours was dead.

    It was offered water/sav-a-chick vit
    Kept in a small nest, so siblings would stop trampling it.
    Became weaker looking-we tried a few times to offer the water.
    No go :( and we hadn't wanted to force water since it wasn't responding/or peeping and we were scared to drown it if it couldn't swallow.
    Was still n quiet and then used the last of its ummmph to crawl 6 inches away from siblings peeping and die.
    NEVER lost a layer chick and these guys seemed awesome and peppy and growing...I hope this is residual from shipping but now they're a week old, I shouldn't be having random losses now should I? I read usually 1st 2 days are the worst for losses.
    Hope these are just part of the norm and we aren't doing somethin wrong.
    Our temps are good, they're eating, growing, drinking, peeping. Ug.
     
  9. BCMaraniac

    BCMaraniac Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm sorry about your chick, but sometimes it just happens. The first 1-2 days is the highest potential for loss, but the entire first week they are susceptible. Sounds like you are doing all the right things. Keep up the good work!
     
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  10. Angelicisi

    Angelicisi Overrun With Chickens

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    Thanks.

    I try and keep food animals separate in my head lol but these chicks are still cute :/
    Hubby and I bump into each other now peeking in on them constantly now lol
     

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