what type broilers

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by chix4smokin, Mar 14, 2009.

  1. chix4smokin

    chix4smokin In the Brooder

    Mar 14, 2009
    Hi, I am going to raise some broilers for my first time [​IMG], and have been trying to figure out which are the best.. I smoke alot of chickens and decided to raise my own this time and make it even more rewarding. I am in the process of building a coop 8x12 hoping it will be sufficent for 50 chicks. And I have 1 more question, do I need roosts for the broilers in the coop? thanks in advance for any help.
  2. Hens_And_Chicks

    Hens_And_Chicks Songster

    Feb 23, 2009
    No roosts - not ever - for broilers. It causes breast blisters on the keel bone.

    Broilers need to sit on a pine shaving pack - one inch deep for every week old they are to avoid blisters and other problems with the meat development.

    Plenty of clean water at all times - never deprive your birds of a constant clean water source and make sure they do not get overheated - put a fan on them if it gets hot for air circulation and cooling.
  3. Hens_And_Chicks

    Hens_And_Chicks Songster

    Feb 23, 2009
    If I recall correctly, you need one square foot of room per bird and three inches of feeder spacer per bird to avoid overcrowding and allow sufficient feeding.
  4. jaku

    jaku Songster

    I'd do them in a tractor- you'll regret it if you raise them in a stationary coop. 50 birds in a coop that size- you'd literally have to clean it twice a day, and even then it would be disgusting. But, that would be perfect size in a tractor that you moved every day.
  5. Kim_NC

    Kim_NC Songster

    Jan 27, 2009
    Mt Airy, NC
    Yeah, they're so much easier in a tractor. Just move it each day, eliminates poop clean-up. Great way to fertilize!

    Trying to raise Cornish X in a coop is the reason so many people say "they stink" or "they're nasty". Really, it's a management problem.

    The thing is they reach 6 lbs in 6 weeks. A standard layer breed takes 5 months to get that size.

    SO - Cornish are going to eat & poop in 6 weeks what another chicken does in 5 months. This is why they can seem 'stinky or nasty' when cooped.

    Tractor is better. You & the birds will be much happier.
  6. sugarbush

    sugarbush Songster

    Jul 24, 2008
    Lexington KY
    When it comes to broilers you only have one choice; Cornish crosses. There are also the color rangers, but they are really not a broiler as they do not grow as fast.

    50 is far too many for a coop that size. I used to raise 400 at a time in a coop that was 30x30 and then an attached run that was also 30x30. It was a mess.

    Now I only raise them for ourselves and I do three small batches a year. It keeps space in the freezer free and makes it so our meat supply is fresh all the time. If 50 is what you need in a year I would divide by three and order three seperate times.
  7. jaku

    jaku Songster

    Quote:Agree- especially until you get the hang of it.
  8. Judy

    Judy Crowing

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    I asked about this here recently; here is the thread. https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=145644

    answers you got were about Cornish X. It is a whole different thing if you are thinking of colored range broilers. Also, Ideal has something called red or black broilers (or rangers, I forget, under meat birds.) I have never raised either but know others here have. Just depends what you mean by broilers.

    I am probably not going to mess with Cornish X this year, but if I do, it will most definitely be in a tractor. No way I am going to clean out that mess every few days or every week when I could just move a tractor instead....

    Lots of info in the meat birds section.
  9. pdpatch

    pdpatch Songster

    Apr 5, 2008
    Hastings, Nebraska
    When you say meat birds some will assume you mean Cornish cross.

    But generally any breed of chicken can be called a meat bird, if it's raised for the pourposes of producing meat.

    Since you are planning to Smoke the meat, a slow cooking method is going to be used, and if you are not plannning to sale them, but want the best tasting meat. I would go longer then the recommended time before butchering.

    In our case feed cost to weight ratio is not a factor, so we go longer then what most people recommend. We also don't sale our meat.

    Most Generally It's recommended here that you raise cornrish cross 6 week before butchering. I would go long maybe 10 to 12 weeks, but slow there growth by having feed available only 12 hours a day.

    For standard breed I would also go beyound the recommend 12 to 15 weeks, to about 18 to 22 weeks, and make sure the get some sort of grass.

    One last item but not the least important, do you plan on butchering them yourself or having someone else do it. You need to decide that before you get your chicks. If you plan on doing it yourself, how many can you do a in a day? If you plan on having someone else do the butchering, you need to find someone first, as that will reduce your stress when it comes time to butcher.

    I wouldn't put Cornish crosses on grass until they are fully feathered, usually after 2 weeks or so.

  10. chix4smokin

    chix4smokin In the Brooder

    Mar 14, 2009
    thanks for all of the replies!!! I'm getting the picture poop,poop,and more poop... I was looking at cornish x and see you can get fast and slow growth? I do plan on putting them outside when they get big enough. I have 6 acres of pasture to move them on. also have been reading that you feed 24/7 for the first 5 days and another said to feed 24/7 first 10 days. any expert suggestions on that? also I guess that I didn't mention that there are three of us doing these together [​IMG] and i'm sure I will have friends coming out of the woodwork when they're finished too. We get alot of breads ,fruit and vegetables from the local foodbank in town that our cows eat anything wrong with them picking on any of that? And I want to thank all of you that have replied for helping me with getting prepared on what is to come [​IMG]

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