Euskal Oiloa Chicken Forum

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#1 2012-09-14 13:40:54

Susan
Administrator
From: Saskatoon, Sask, Canada
Registered: 2011-06-28
Posts: 2540

What do you use to fatten birds?

I have a group of Roos that I have to butcher this year. I am actually excited to try pressure canning them. So how to put the most weight on them? I won't confine them, though they are not in a huge pen and they have no girls with them. I am thinking feed here. Grower? Wheat? I have access to raw milk and could use that if it would help. Is it protein, or carbs, or fat I want to increase? What has worked for you?

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2012-09-14 13:40:54

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#2 2012-09-14 14:14:31

Maggiesdad
Moderator
From: Louisa County, Virginia
Registered: 2011-10-05
Posts: 1980

Re: What do you use to fatten birds?

Seriously?  Caponize  :chairhide:

Too late for that now, though - needs to be at  5 or 6 wks.  But Eoalak in Spain holds seminars on it at least annually...

In your case, I think high fat will just add fat to the chicken...

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#3 2012-09-14 14:16:05

Susan
Administrator
From: Saskatoon, Sask, Canada
Registered: 2011-06-28
Posts: 2540

Re: What do you use to fatten birds?

Sorry, MD! That is something I will never ever do. I am totally against it. :shock:

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#4 2012-09-14 14:18:32

Maggiesdad
Moderator
From: Louisa County, Virginia
Registered: 2011-10-05
Posts: 1980

Re: What do you use to fatten birds?

I understand.  :happycrowd"

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#5 2012-09-14 14:21:35

Susan
Administrator
From: Saskatoon, Sask, Canada
Registered: 2011-06-28
Posts: 2540

Re: What do you use to fatten birds?

Have you tried it?

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#6 2012-09-14 14:40:21

Maggiesdad
Moderator
From: Louisa County, Virginia
Registered: 2011-10-05
Posts: 1980

Re: What do you use to fatten birds?

No. That would require a level of veterinary skill that I am no where close to attaining. :sad:

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#7 2012-09-14 14:52:25

appway
Member
From: Moosomin,SK
Registered: 2012-03-19
Posts: 237

Re: What do you use to fatten birds?

rolled oats and sprouted grains work good
I know that is what I up for winter so they have extra weight
and when I had the Goat Dairy we fed them alot of milk and that really did it

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#8 2012-09-14 15:11:51

Susan
Administrator
From: Saskatoon, Sask, Canada
Registered: 2011-06-28
Posts: 2540

Re: What do you use to fatten birds?

MD, I can use a scalpel and suture ( started vet school, but quit to have my babies and never went back, sigh). It is the ethics; surgery without anesthesia that I  don't condone.
Appway, did you sprout wheat, or various grains? How much milk without giving them diarrhea?

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#9 2012-09-14 18:02:14

Flat Rock Farm
Member
From: Branchton, Ontario Canada
Registered: 2011-07-03
Posts: 3359

Re: What do you use to fatten birds?

I have seen capon's done before.  Not very humane that has got to hurt with no pain meds or or local freezing :sick: :nervous:  I'm with you there Susan.

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#10 2012-09-15 00:40:12

gubi
Member
From: Walton
Registered: 2011-06-30
Posts: 1344
Website

Re: What do you use to fatten birds?

Sometimes when you see cockerels gang up on each other makes one wonder though if caponizing would be more humane.


Herd of Brown Swiss, a few sheep, red cuckoo basque, Silverspangled Appenzeller Spitzhauben, ameraucanas(EE), Welsummer, broodie silkies and a few more heritage hens

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#11 2012-09-15 01:42:28

Susan
Administrator
From: Saskatoon, Sask, Canada
Registered: 2011-06-28
Posts: 2540

Re: What do you use to fatten birds?

I hear what you are saying, Gubi, nasty roo fights or ganging up are horrible. These guys are doing pretty good together. Need feed ideas :please:

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#12 2012-09-15 01:51:12

gubi
Member
From: Walton
Registered: 2011-06-30
Posts: 1344
Website

Re: What do you use to fatten birds?

EO's do seem to get along much better then some other breeds.  I just gave mine poultry grower/finisher and pasture.  They need protein and energy(fat and carbs) in balance to grow and finish properly.  to finish up you would increase the energy level a bit.  I really haven't got enough experience this is only my second year that we actually put some in the freezer.  I know pigs and cattle are generally finished on lots of corn.


Herd of Brown Swiss, a few sheep, red cuckoo basque, Silverspangled Appenzeller Spitzhauben, ameraucanas(EE), Welsummer, broodie silkies and a few more heritage hens

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#13 2012-09-15 02:11:51

ipf
Member
From: Salt Spring Island, BC, Canada
Registered: 2011-08-29
Posts: 168

Re: What do you use to fatten birds?

We just sent our latest batch of meat birds (sorry, cornish crosses, not EOs) off to slaughter. We've always put a lot of effort into ensuring that they eat bugs and grass (as well as chook feed and grain), and think we have it well worked out; our birds roam the field, and are fat, happy, and tasty. Also my husband works at the local cheesery, so we've been feeding them whey (high protein, some fat), starting when they were a couple of weeks old.

Recently I read some scientific research that suggested that lactobacillus bacteria could counteract the effect of "bad" gut bacteria and reduce joint problems in meat birds, but only if fed from day 1. Whey, of course, contains high levels of lactobacillus. So we gave them whey on demand from day 1. It's interesting  - this batch of birds had the highest weight gain rate and lowest mortality since we've raised meat birds (about 6 years). And how they love the whey!

Most cheeseries have a surplus of whey, and some (many) are happy to give it away.

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#14 2012-09-15 02:17:54

Susan
Administrator
From: Saskatoon, Sask, Canada
Registered: 2011-06-28
Posts: 2540

Re: What do you use to fatten birds?

We get raw milk once a week. Sometimes during the end of the week, it starts to get a bit strong tasting so I leave it even longer in the fridge and it starts to turn to a yogurt or keefir like consistency. The birds LOVE it. Funny, the exotic vet here who dealt with chickens ( she moved on), says birds are lactose intolerant. I have a hard time believing that. Guess I better make some more cheese soon!

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#15 2012-09-15 04:34:16

appway
Member
From: Moosomin,SK
Registered: 2012-03-19
Posts: 237

Re: What do you use to fatten birds?

Susan we sprouted wheat oats corn what ever grains we have at the time as grass is pretty brown here now so that is what I am doing now also.
as for milk I would start slow but I would just dump a gallon in a pan amd they drank when they wanted

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#16 2012-09-18 12:51:57

Susan
Administrator
From: Saskatoon, Sask, Canada
Registered: 2011-06-28
Posts: 2540

Re: What do you use to fatten birds?

I wonder if corn oil would help?

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#17 2012-09-18 16:00:14

NaturesPace
Member
From: Augusta county VA, USA
Registered: 2011-12-20
Posts: 915
Website

Re: What do you use to fatten birds?

CR made me aware of this thread of backyard chickens. http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/64430 … meat-birds
I started feeding my birds FF everyday. Just a little. but they seem to love it. when they see the bucket they come running.


More pictures and videos of chicks. www.outoforderacres.com

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#18 2012-09-19 00:55:41

Susan
Administrator
From: Saskatoon, Sask, Canada
Registered: 2011-06-28
Posts: 2540

Re: What do you use to fatten birds?

NaturesPace wrote:

CR made me aware of this thread of backyard chickens. http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/64430 … meat-birds
I started feeding my birds FF everyday. Just a little. but they seem to love it. when they see the bucket they come running.

Thx NP! I am only on page 6, but it looks to be an interesting read!

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#19 2012-10-12 02:46:32

Maggiesdad
Moderator
From: Louisa County, Virginia
Registered: 2011-10-05
Posts: 1980

Re: What do you use to fatten birds?

Hey Susan here's a cool read that 3riverschick dug up on BYC -     http://tinyurl.com/9bq9f4b

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#20 2012-10-12 03:57:53

mikencarol
Member
From: Oklahoma
Registered: 2012-08-21
Posts: 204

Re: What do you use to fatten birds?

I have been feeding FF since I read CR's article about it.......so far...it has worked!  It takes a lot of damn work but it has really put the weight on my half-growm turkeys and some half groun EO's  Even though it is work, I'm gonna keep on doing it until I burtcher


I have to keep reminding myself... "It is The Standard of Perfection...NOT the Standard of Quantity that we are striving for..."

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#21 2012-10-12 15:31:46

Susan
Administrator
From: Saskatoon, Sask, Canada
Registered: 2011-06-28
Posts: 2540

Re: What do you use to fatten birds?

Thanks MD! And Mike- that's great to know. I haven't attempted it yet, just using raw milk so far still. Think it's working too! :)

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#22 2013-06-27 14:12:19

Little Boy Blue
Member
From: Marble Falls, Texas
Registered: 2012-07-11
Posts: 83
Website

Re: What do you use to fatten birds?

We did an experiment with the two EO cockerels this spring.  At 5 weeks old we put them on 24/7 pasture with only scratch grains.  We were told the low protien of the scratch grains encouraged foraging and was a tradition way of raising meat birds.  They seemed to be growing really fast, but their 10 week check-up revealed that they were both under conditioned, so we stated putting out one feeder with the scratch grains and one with a 15% grower feed.  The scratch grains were gone every day, but they didn't eat much of the grower pellets. :-)

At 14 weeks we did their first weigh-in.  The bigger cockerel was 4 lbs and the smaller one 3.5 lbs. 

At 18 weeks we did the 2nd weigh-in.  The bigger one was 5 lbs and the smaller one 4.5 lbs. 

We decide to retain the bigger one for a possible breeder and left him on the field.  We took the smaller one and put him in a rooster hutch in the garage on a sour milk with 2/5 buckwheat, 2/5 oats, 1/5 corn diet for 2 weeks.  We turned the light on for about a hour three times a day the first week and put food in for him to eat about 15 minutes after the light went on.  He didn't seem to be gaining much weight though.  We were told that the dark would make him conserve energy because he wouldn't move around, but he didn't seem intrested in food at all so it must have supressed his appetite too.  The last 4-5 day we left the light one all day and left his food bucket there all day instead of just feeding him for 30-45 minute 2-3 times a day and then removing the bucket. 

At the end of day 14 we weighed the cockerel on the field and the cockerel in the fattening pen.  The cockerel in the fattening pen didn't look like he had gained much weight, but he came in 1/4 pound heavier than the on on the field so we are calling it a 3/4 pound weight gain.  We were hoping for closer to a 2 pound weight gain so not too successful, but we learned a little and will change the way we do things next time.

Has anyone else tried this type of grow-out and fattening plan?  If so what type of results have you had?  Is there anything I should try to get closer to my 2 pould goal for fattening?

Last edited by Little Boy Blue (2013-06-27 14:15:39)


Cottage Hill Black Copper Marans & Cream Legbars

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#23 2013-06-28 11:54:48

Maggiesdad
Moderator
From: Louisa County, Virginia
Registered: 2011-10-05
Posts: 1980

Re: What do you use to fatten birds?

Mom told me "Stop letting them get so big! Bring me some little ones." I processed 13 cockerels in the 1 1/2 - 2lb range. I took her 8 of them and she pulled out a little feller and commenced frying... OMG The best fried chicken I've ever had! :eat: Gosh with chicken like that I'm going to have a tough time growing out boys for future breeders... good thing I have the Sportsman!  :excited:

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#24 2013-06-28 12:28:04

gubi
Member
From: Walton
Registered: 2011-06-30
Posts: 1344
Website

Re: What do you use to fatten birds?

I actually did my first batch of cockerels at about 9 weeks of age this year.  skinned and cut the spine out and they were great on the BBQ.  Even the Spitzoiloa's had a good amount of meat on them at that age.  I currently have a dozen Welsummer cockerels about that age but they feel like they have no meat on them yet.


Herd of Brown Swiss, a few sheep, red cuckoo basque, Silverspangled Appenzeller Spitzhauben, ameraucanas(EE), Welsummer, broodie silkies and a few more heritage hens

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#25 2013-06-28 15:41:18

Little Boy Blue
Member
From: Marble Falls, Texas
Registered: 2012-07-11
Posts: 83
Website

Re: What do you use to fatten birds?

Yes I am definatly going to put some "Poussin" on the table too since I don't need them all as breeders. 

I would still like to have nice fattened Chicken for Holidays so if any of you have tips on how to finish the big boys let me know.


Cottage Hill Black Copper Marans & Cream Legbars

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