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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We lost a 6 week old today. They aren't growing as fast as we expected. They all have a bulging gullet full of Nutrena Meat Bird feed (size of a tennis ball), but not much meat on their bodies. The dead one was stuffed with feed but bony. They're in a dirt bottom coop with lots of grit, but it doesn't look like they're eating any. Tonight we replaced their feed with commercial grit. Am I on the right track of the issue? How do we save our flock of 50 meatsies??
 

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I have had CornishX's plop down in front of the feeder. I strongly suggest you feed less several times a day, and include some greens (table scraps, weeds from your garden, lawn clippings if you do not use Pesticides).


Edit: I'm Roger's wife, he left the window open, I hope he doesn't mind me adding something. You might also want to mix some grit straight into their food, so you're sure their eating it. I never underestimate the stupidity of chickens... Another thing might be break them into small flocks. They might be stressing themselves out with pecking order and chicken blanket-parties, that they're burning off energy with that, and rushing to feed before others can (I've also had some not gain weight because the higher ranking ones won't leave them be long enough to feed...) With one batch we were introducing, I ended up feeding the older ones like normal, then setting out another feed spot out in the run for the newbies.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
The coop is 15x20'. We let them free range today while we stayed near. I've been giving them kitchen acraps & grass clippings. After some research, I think they sold me Roasters instead of Cross. These Cornish will need more than the 42 days I was told. Roasters need 2 extra weeks typically.
 

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I agree with Riverdale....add grit directly to the feed and start with small grit then move up in size each week! Don't fill the feeders for them to eat ALL day long, either....remove the feeders or feed them 3-4 times each day if you can. What is the % of protein you are using???
 

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Now listen up!...lay off the "formula" feeds and give these birds some cracked corn and left-over table scraps.....let them free range for and hour or two a day if you are able. Never will science and its mandated diets grow optimal birds/livestock/...or humans....let these birds do what they do best. FORAGE!! They will grow...use your best judgement on when to do the deal on them....not a science growth sheet!! Chickens are good hardy birds...lets dont mess them up with too many GMO's and scientific data....and remember...respect and love the lifes you have that are in your charge...they will respond with what they do best!!

CHEERS!!
 

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When we raised Cornish X's earlier this year we provided commercial feed every other day. We had a dozen with about twenty layers come in at the same time. I have a 5 pound hanging feeder that I would fill up every other evening. They had ample roaming and ranging area. They still made weight within 6 - 10 weeks and the exercise they got running for grub provided darker leg and thigh meat than what we were expecting. Our suggestion would be to encourage them to move as much as possible. Good luck.
 
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