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Thread: Chickens

  1. #1
    Great Value Carrots
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    Chickens

    Any one here keep chickens? I have been raising chickens for eggs and meat, off and on for many years. I really enjoy it and the eggs and meat are unparalleled. I have found that raising chickens for eggs can save a little money but the real benefit is the quality of the eggs. Raising meat chickens, I have found that I spend even more than what I could buy them for per pound in the store, to raise them; the quality of the meat is far better though. For meat chickens I get the Cornish Cross. Tried them last year and they are more productive than my other dual purpose breeds.

    My egg layers are only giving me a couple of eggs a day now and I have twenty of them. Something is wrong. I plan on replacing them all in the spring. Maybe they are getting a little old. I will try Ida Browns this time.

    I plan on making a chicken tractor. This is a caged area that can be moved day to day. It's been a long winter and it's not over yet but it helps keep the mind clear when you make plans for the new seasons.
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    Unobtanium osoab's Avatar
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    Re: Chickens

    How old are the chickens? I normally butchered egg layers after two years.

    It is winter time. Moght want to wait and see if production increases once you get more daylight up north.

    Chickens can live for over a decade. Doesn't mean they are putting out eggs though.
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    Great Value Carrots
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    Re: Chickens

    Quote Originally Posted by osoab View Post
    Chickens can live for over a decade. Doesn't mean they are putting out eggs though.
    It does mean they are keeping the bug population down though.

    Keep some dairy cows. Feed them well. Also some sows. Don't feed them as well 'cause they get a warm meal every time a cow makes a pie. As for the chickens don't feed them at all 'cause they like sow droppings. Three uses for one feedin.

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    Gold ImaCannin's Avatar
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    Re: Chickens

    I have raised both egg layers and Cornish cross meat birds.

    Good Egg layers will give about an egg a day or approx 320 a year. They will molt when the second winter comes around. I usually let them molt for two weeks then put a low wattage bulb on a timer in their coop. Come on at 6 am and go off at 11 pm. Hens will drop about 20 to 30% every year in production. In the past, I have replaced my hens every year. I like to buy extra pullets and raise them up to 10 weeks old then sell them . The profit pays for my replacement hens. I then sell the older hens when my pullets start laying. One year I got spunky and bought 40 white leghorns... when they started laying I used most of the eggs up by scrambling and freeze drying them. Leghorns are the best layer, but are spaztoid! I like golden sex links. They are friendly and awesome layers.

    I like to raise my own meat. I have meat birds down to a science! I usually raise 40 Cornish Cross per year. I try to butcher them at 9 to 10 weeks old. My birds weigh on average 7 to 9 lbs dressed out. And you are right, they taste awesome! With the way I raise them, I don’t have many loses.

    I also raise giant Pekin ducks. At 7 weeks old they dress out to about 7 lb duck. Mighty fine baked in a roaster for 4 hours!
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