The Importance of Proper Feeding and Maintenance For Your Meaties

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by jaku, Nov 14, 2010.

  1. jaku

    jaku Songster

    My buddy and I wanted to squeeze one more batch of Cornish X's out of this year, so we split a batch of 40. Yesterday was butchering day. Keep in mind that the birds in the following photo are the SAME birds, hatched on the same day, same hatchery, etc. I drove to the hatchery, picked them up, and dropped 20 off to my buddy, and kept the remaining 20.

    I feed my birds with a strict 12/12 program of 22% protein, mill ground feed. I also pasture raise them, in movable PVC tractors. My buddy gives his a feeder full of 20% TSC (Dumor) feed "a couple times a day." He keeps his in a smaller area of his chicken yard, penned separately from his layers.

    Here is the result from our butchering day. My 20 birds are on the right- separated by parts in the tubs. His SAME 20 birds are bagged on the left. Weighed out, he got 52 pounds of meat. I got 114 pounds.

    Feed and raise properly, and they will treat you right. Otherwise....

    1 person likes this.
  2. Elphaba2140

    Elphaba2140 Songster

    Mar 20, 2010
    Northern Illinois
    This is a very nice trial comparison. Thanks for posting this!
  3. Bossroo

    Bossroo Songster

    Jun 15, 2008
    Jaku... you validated the old Scottish saying... " The eye of the master fatens the cattle".
  4. Lorije1

    Lorije1 Songster

    Mar 13, 2010
    Wow! I need to up the protein because your friend sounds like my program... except mine have access to grass and bugs. I feed the 20% Dumor. I do sometimes mix in Gamebird 24%... And I keep food available the 12/12. Hmmm.
    My meats are just over 3 weeks old, so I'll get on the ball for their last 2 weeks.
  5. MeatKing

    MeatKing Songster

    wow, what difference!
    Thanks for sharing!
  6. deerman

    deerman Rest in Peace 1949-2012

    Aug 24, 2008
    Southern Ohio
    Sound like your friends didn't get enought feed, 2 times aday ? Should have feed in front of them all day. Sex of the chicken will also make a big differents, males put alot more weight on.

    your avg 5.7 lbs

    his avg 2.6 lbs. sounds like he straved his...

    Mind avg over 5 lbs also with males over 6 lbs also fed on 24 % first 4 week
    1 person likes this.
  7. Looking4ewes

    Looking4ewes In the Brooder

    Aug 10, 2010
    Mine are on the light side. I butchered two at 7 weeks at 3 lbs. dressed. I feed 21% mill ground feed free-choice and the birds are allowed to free range within a large confinement, 12' x 20', during the day (20 birds total). The coop is insulated but unheated at night. They also get excess milk, about 1 gallon a day. They are all cockerals. I was hoping to get them to 5+ lbs. at 8 weeks. Any suggestions for an increased rate of gain? We did have a cold spell there for a bit, and perhaps they are moving about outside too much (which they enjoy greatly). Should I put a heat lamp on them? I did have leg issues on a couple of them, but I didn't know about the 12/12 feeding method until recently. I purchased them from Eagle's Nest in OH.
  8. jaku

    jaku Songster

    Let me add also... I'm not suggesting that the problem is with the Dumor feed, or the protein percentage of it. A 2% difference in protein content wouldn't make much difference. I've fed Dumor feed before, and I've fed 20% before, all quite successfully. The main reason (for me) to get mill ground feed is that it's about half the price. The issue here, I believe, was the assumption that you can raise these just like regular birds- just casually feeding them. They need to eat for those 12 hours!
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2010
  9. deerman

    deerman Rest in Peace 1949-2012

    Aug 24, 2008
    Southern Ohio
    could be the cold, some feed will go to keep them warm. Take them to 9 weeks should get them to 5 lbs.

    I keep feed in front of mine 24/7 but only 12 hrs of light, so they don't eat all night.
  10. halo

    halo Got The Blues

    Nov 22, 2007
    My Coop
    Thats an amazing difference. I was wondering if it was the percentage protein, or the amount of feed that was the difference. Thanks for clarifying.

    Did I miss how old these birds were when you butchered them?
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2010

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