What size pen

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by lesgo54, Aug 25, 2013.

  1. lesgo54

    lesgo54 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 13, 2012
    spencer, tn
    The wife and I may attempt to raise some meat birds next year. We thinking 20-25 Cornish x my ? Is what size pen would u recommend for that amount
  2. redsoxs

    redsoxs Chicken Obsessed

    Jul 17, 2011
    North Central Kansas
    Standard chickens require a coop size of 4 sq. ft. per bird and a run size of 10 sq. ft. bird. Cornish are pretty good sized but don't move all that much as they get bigger....mainly just camping out around the feeder. Good luck to you!
  3. ChocolateMouse

    ChocolateMouse Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 29, 2013
    Cleveland OH
    I scatter my feed on grass using a chicken tractor and my CX's run like the dickens all over the place. No feeder for them to hang out around!
  4. mstricer

    mstricer Overrun With Chickens

    Feb 12, 2009
    like that plan. I make mine walk to to their feed and feed once a day and the rest they free range for, I just sent 3 down the road for slaughter and will see what their weights were
  5. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    As large as you can make it.

    Are we talking a stationary pen? That's going to build up a LOT of poop, these birds convert feed to poo like you wouldn't believe. Can you either tractor them or free range them?

    Do you have freezer space for 25 birds?
  6. mstricer

    mstricer Overrun With Chickens

    Feb 12, 2009
    Stationary is bad. I had a hen raise my 3 and they continued to be in the coop and run and free ranged, I have had to do a lot of cleaning in the coop and the run is gross due to poop and rain and me waiting on sand
  7. bowhunter862

    bowhunter862 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 28, 2013
    Hazelton, WV
    You could build a 5000 square foot pen and CX won't be 5 feet from feed or water at any given time. I'm on my third batch of the summer. I have a 150 sq. ft. coop and another 96 sq. ft in a enclosed yard. Only a few ever venture outside and mostly because I provide feed and water out there too. I have 70 in my coop right now. Yes, you do have to keep up with poop removal and adding bedding, but it is very do-able if you are committed.
  8. thriftyfarmer

    thriftyfarmer Out Of The Brooder

    Aug 24, 2013
    If you are going to build a tractor...

    Brooder: 25 Cornish Cross broilers need about 0.5 square feet per bird until they are 21 days old. (12 square feet of brooder space... 2 X 6)

    Tractor: If you move it once a day, they will need about 1.5 square feet per bird. So 25 broilers need a pen that has 37.5 square feet of "grass" space. 6 X 6 would be close enough but I would just build an 8 X 8 in case you wanted to do more in the future. I have made and used 8 X 8 Salatin Design tractors and they work great. We put 40 broilers in and they had plenty of space. Also... stud lumber is cheap and comes in 8 foot lengths. Ripped down they make great boards for a light pen.
    1 person likes this.
  9. mstricer

    mstricer Overrun With Chickens

    Feb 12, 2009
    They will be if you move their feed outside their pen and only feed them enough to fill their coops in the AM or PM and make them free range. They become accustom to free ranging and will eat bugs and grass. Mine have traveled all over my yard in search of me or food. I agree with the 8X8 foot hoop house style
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2013
  10. WalkingOnSunshine

    WalkingOnSunshine Overrun With Chickens

    Apr 8, 2008
    I'd say as large as you can make it, but no smaller than 2 sq. feet per bird. I've seen Cornish X in 1.5 or even 1 square foot per bird pens, and it's not pretty. They need the extra space to grow better and healthier, and also to get away from each other. All young birds have a tendency to pile up on each other, but Cornish X can suffocate each other, overheat each other, and break each others' legs if they don't have enough space. Also, don't add any roosting areas--Cornish X like to try to roost, but can break their own legs jumping down.

    They don't like to go far from food, but they do waddle around some if given the option, even if it's just from the happy shady napping spot to the food and back. We give ours 4 sq. ft. per bird now, but I've done less. Having done both, I would always give them more space if you possibly can. You can do less in a moveable pen situation, but no matter what, more room will be better for the birds. The 8x8 pens that others are suggesting will work very nicely if you plan to move it to new grass every day.

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