Last time we had chicks we made our own make shift brooder, after about two days of having the Cornish cross chicks we noticed that they were losing the feathers on their chest. I had been changing the bedding sometimes twice a day and we had even created a second brooder so we could change it more often. I headed out to the feed store to talk with the owner about them losing feathers, plus we had decided it was time to get ourselves a better set up. He explained that since they grow so fast their feathers cannot keep up and they end up having bald patches. We ordered a custom cage for them so that it would be much easier to keep them clean and healthy.
I think we have decided that next time around we will just raise a meat or dual purpose breed that is not so cross bred that it grows crazy fast. Here are a few things to consider when your deciding on Cornish cross chicks: They are disgusting, they poop about 4 times as much as a regular chick and eat all the time. I mean all the time...they literally sit down next to the food and eat, then fall asleep with their head in it. I have to fill up the food way way more than with our last chicks. Ours are only a couple weeks old and they already are having trouble with walking around. They also learned how to fly within about 2 days of having them...which means they need a top or full cage from the start.
I will be trying to give tips and updates over the next 6-8 weeks and I'm sure we will be happy with the end result...meat from our own backyard but I know next time we will choose a different breed. They are not all bad just not right for us. I feel kind of sick about the whole thing...like I'm twisting nature for my own benefit.
|The new custom cage with scrap wood to hold up the light and an oil pan under.|