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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I got my 1st batch of chicks about 2 months ago ( 6 broilers and 6 red rangers ) and I'm trying to figure out what breed of chickens I'm going to get next. I live in AR so I'm looking for a very versatile breed I can use for meat. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
 

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Welcome from another Arkie (a transplanted one at least) :)
Which would you prefer? A true broiler type that have special needs as far as housing and feeding go; but grow to a huge (processing) size by the time they are 6 to 8 weeks old; or a heritage breed that are slower to grow, but can live with egg laying breeds and can free range? These are properly called dual purpose birds.
 

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I had a good amount of Delawares a few years back and those boys grew large and "meaty". The Delaware was a cross breed originally bred for females with good laying and good disposition and males for good meat and in the 1950's they were the broiler birds before the Cornish Rock Cross dominated and took over the meat market.

Also the Wyandotte is an excellent cross purpose breed. They have a more wide breast and more meat on their bones than other "dual" breeds that I have dealt with. And if you can get a GOOD breed line of the Rocks, they have a good shape, but I think the Wyandotte is better.
 

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I like the heritage breeds but that is just me ...
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for all of the advice. And to the other Arkie, do u know of any chicken swaps in Arkansas in the next couple months ?
 

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Thanks for all of the advice. And to the other Arkie, do u know of any chicken swaps in Arkansas in the next couple months ?
I did a quick check with friends and sorry, but no one knows of any swaps coming up soon.

I am in the SW corner of the state and looking to re-home a small flock of seramas to a good home. Very small, require a pen without a doubt, but you'll never have to worry about needing a broody hen again.
 

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If I didn't have to drive any further south than Texarkana or any further north than Mena I wouldn't want any money for them. I would require a pic of their future home (coop and pen). Seramas are very tiny, wih the rooster weighing only 12 ounces. They can't be housed with other birds, not even bantam breeds. They are good egglayers, tiny eggs but consistent all year round. The hens go broody from the first hint of spring until the first hard frost, on a nearly constant basis. They'd hatch a rock if it were possible.
There's lots of info. available on the breed online so you can see for yourself just how unique they are.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I just had a new coop built, but it's for my broilers until I slaughter them in 3 or 4 weeks. But I live outside in Bryant and my friend has a spare coop they can stay in until then. How many do u have ?
 

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I have a very handsome one year old rooster, 3 one year old hens and a two year old hen. I'm keeping the youngest, a 2 month old cockerel, as a companion for my special needs hen.
Bryant is a long ways from us. I'd have to check with our postmistress about bird shipping regulations at this time of year. The temperatures on both ends have to be within a certain range before the USPS will allow it.
 

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I'll talk to my husband about whether he is willing to drive to Hot Springs or not and let you know. We just returned from a long and stressful trip to Florida and haven't been too eager to go anywhere since returning home.
 

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I got my 1st batch of chicks about 2 months ago ( 6 broilers and 6 red rangers ) and I'm trying to figure out what breed of chickens I'm going to get next. I live in AR so I'm looking for a very versatile breed I can use for meat. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
What do you mean by "versatile breed"??? Your topic title asks "Good Breeds for Meat Chickens" but it sounds like you are asking about "dual purpose" when you say "versatile breed"?!?!? Can you be more specific???
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
When I said versatile breed I meant a breed that can do well in almost all types of weather, and is relatively easy to grow and take care of
 

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When I said versatile breed I meant a breed that can do well in almost all types of weather, and is relatively easy to grow and take care of
The Buckeye would meet your expectations....they are good in ALL types of weather, very cold tolerant and do well in hot environments, too! They are not fast growers like the cornish-rocks (frankenchickens) but the cockerels are generally large enought to butcher at 16-18 weeks when properly fed. Buckeyes are a dual purpose breed that lays a fair number of eggs as well.:)
 
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