In this day it is more economical to raise your own brood if you have a piece of land to do it. We got a bunch of babies and lost 1/2 to a predator. We were able to save 13 birds and quite a few were roosters. We have a flock now of 6 hens and 1 rooster. So much more quieter now with out the other roosters chasing each other for dominance and pestering the hens. They are now 4 mths old and we are now ready to transfer them real soon to the new area for the winter. Putting the nesting boxes inside the tractor shed. This will give them so much more room and I will be happier when we get this built.
We built a chicken tractor out of some scrap 2×4’s that the neighbor gave us. Purely for their protection. I want to free range them but with all the predators I felt this was the safest and I would know where they were at all times. I put a piece of 2×4 under one end to keep it level and this also stops them from getting out. Here are some other examples I will put up the pictures in related content.
I used to raise meat birds and leghorns years ago. Right now I have Barred Rocks(but I think they are also mixed because I got these chicks from someone who hatches for a hobby) He only charged me 2.00 per chick. Most of the sites to order chicks are now
done for the winter. The earliest that you can get any more would be January and you can order them to be sent to your post office. You will have to go and pick them up as soon as they call you. They will be hungry so your also will want to have your brooding lamp going water and food in place for when you release them.
We used a box, took the sides down and then put them back together with duct tape and placed a old shower curtain on the floor for the bottom. The temperature for the babies needs to be about 85 degrees. you can keep track of this with a thermometer. The other indication is how the chicks act.. if they are separated and walking around all over when they are awake then the temperature is right. If they are all huddled in a corner under the lamp then they could be a little on the cool side. Naturally they will all huddle together when they go to sleep. To keep the warmth in I also put a towel over part of my boxed area away from the lamp of course just to keep some heat inside.
After a week you can raise the lamp. You can decrease the temperature 5 degrees each week. I had to put mine out into the pen when they got to about 3-4 weeks old cause they were trying to fly up and perch on the edge of the box 😀 If you have ordered any kind of meat bird they will be ready to butcher at 6 weeks. You can leave them longer as I did one time to 10 weeks and they were the size of small turkey’s. Keep your meat birds in a confined area so that they are not flying and mucking about too much and they will get big and fat. If you keep them eating,
I was told that mine would be meat birds but when butchering the roosters I found they were mostly feathers. They will be good in the stew pot since there is only the 2 of us. If you have any questions please feel free to ask.
- Home Made Fodder System (everythingpossible4u.wordpress.com)