slow cornish X meaties - really small

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by City Chicken, Nov 21, 2012.

  1. City Chicken

    City Chicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So, here's the deal.
    I have about 20 cornish X that I am raising with my sister. I raised them the first 2 weeks, now she has had them for about 3.

    They are being tractored and not fed continuously.

    I had to keep one behind because it was ill and of course it didn't have to compete for food, didn't move as much- but was still healthy and tractored a few times a week with fresh grass.
    i even taught it to eat worms. haha.

    so, last week i took the recovered bird out to her house. i expected that it would be SMALLER because it had been recovering from injury. in was 3 times LARGER than the rest. She said that their crops are always full, and she is quite happy with the slower growth rate. i mean, they are SMALL.

    is this just the effect of the grass? should they be allowed more food? they seem happy enough, but i am concerned.

    is there any harm in growing them out longer if they are so small? the usual problems with cornish X would be tempered by this slower growth right?

    i was hoping to process dec 8, but at this point won't be until just before christmas at the earliest, maybe even after.

    has anyone else grown them out slower like this?
    i'm going over tomorrow and i'll get pictures.
     
  2. SIMZ

    SIMZ Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Are they being fed anything but grass? If they're in a small tractor area and not given feed their growth will be affected. Slower growth rates aren't a problem, but I'd make sure these guys are getting the nutrition they need. They need more than grass and they aren't going to be able to get the bugs they need in a small tractor unless it's being moved several times a day (depending on size).
    I know many will disagree, so remember that this is just my opinion. [​IMG] These birds are bred and designed to eat and grow. This breed is probably not the best choice if looking for a slow growing bird that doesn't need to be fed a lot.

    We don't limit food and give our meaties free range access. We rarely have problems with our birds dying. They are healthy and active and dress out between 4-7 pounds around 6-8 weeks. Sure, they eat a lot, but we select meaties to get quick results.

    It's all about learning and finding what works best for you! Enjoy!! [​IMG]
     
  3. City Chicken

    City Chicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    yeah, we didn't want a slow growing bird, but this is how she is managing them right now.
    they are getting feed and grass, but not continual feed. i think she feeds them twice a day and they are moved twice daily as well.
     
  4. Oregon Blues

    Oregon Blues Overrun With Chickens

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    What kind of feed is she giving to the birds? They need protein to grow muscle. Something is not right because the birds aren't growing the way they are programed to grow.
     
  5. City Chicken

    City Chicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    she is giving them 18% grower i think and soaking the feed. she will be fermenting soon.
     
  6. SIMZ

    SIMZ Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well, if they're getting grower and the tractor is being moved then they're probably getting the nutrition that they need. Our last batch seemed really small around 4-5 weeks and then really caught up in the next couple of weeks. Maybe the one that you had separated really plumped up under your special care, and that makes the others look that much smaller. :)

    Happy Thanksgiving!
     
  7. MeatKing

    MeatKing Chillin' With My Peeps

    our batch we have growing right now is 9 weeks old and look like 6 weeks :( It's the first time we've done meaties this late in the year.. Ontario Canada here.. I figured it had something to do with the cold weather and useing so many calories to keep warm..

    I couldn't see where you are from.. I'm assuming this is not the problem where you are, because thier in a tractor?
     
  8. delisha

    delisha Overrun With Chickens

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    It is probably weather related. They grow slower in cooler weather. As long as they have enough feed and grass they will be fine. Slow growing saves a few bucks. You might suggest she move the tractor one more time a day if you want to get them done for xmass.
     
  9. Lazy J Farms Feed & Hay

    Lazy J Farms Feed & Hay Chillin' With My Peeps

    I think it is a combination of weather and lack of feeding. If you want broilers to grow they need feed.
     
  10. City Chicken

    City Chicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    the weather here has been incredible. like spring. no real cold spells yet... i was laying out on my deck soaking in the sun yesterday. it's weird, but i like it!
     

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