Everything You Need to Know About Raising Broiler Chickens

Everything You Need to Know About Raising Broilers Chickens


Selecting the bird:

-Type of poultry: meat type Cornish Cross , or other breed
– Purchase disease free stock (from NPIP source,Pullorum and AI free)
– Plan for all -in – all-out flocks

Before the birds arrive:

-Draft free coop or housing, cleaned and disinfected
– Brooder stove or heat lamp (red bulb type, if needed) set to 95 oF for first week.
– Dry litter, (pine shavings preferred), 3-4 inches on clean floor.
– Roosts (use clean tree branches) 26” above ground for broilers
– Feeders and Waterers, cleaned and disinfected
– Fresh Feed, appropriate for age and type of bird

When the birds arrive:

– Check for symptoms such as coughing, sneezing, watery eyes, labored breathing, diarrhea, or pasty butt. Check for external parasites
– Provide water for first couple of hours, then add feed. (if birds have been shipped overnight, then make a 5% sugar water solution for first day)
– Check waters, feeders, heat source, eliminate drafts, etc.
– Wild bird and rodent proof coop, set bait stations, traps, etc., as needed.


– foot dips, clean shoes or boots, limit visitors and traffic, set up a quarantine area.

General Management:

– Check birds daily for signs of disease.
– If disease is suspected get a reliable diagnosis and treat as necessary.
– Cull very sick or injured birds, use proper disposal (burn or bury deep)
– Establish a regular de-worming program
– Keep litter clean and dry, replace wet litter. Do thorough clean out every six months including disinfection.
– Proper disposal of manure such as composting.

Choosing Meat Breeds

Unlike with layers, there are limited options…
– Cornish X
– Other hybrid varieties (Reds, Barred, Silvers.etc)
– Dual purpose varieties (Buffs, Barred Rocks)
Freedom ranger
J.M. Hatchery
178 Lowry Road, New Holland, PA 17557
(717)336- 4878
Here is what Troy Griepentrog wrote about the Freedom ranger: I spent about $229.11 buying the chicks and feed. I fed about 530 pounds of commercial feed plus about 90 pounds of whole oats. The following numbers aren’t
precise, but should be pretty close:
620 pounds of feed produced 195 pounds of live birds (3.17 pounds of feed per pound of gain — about the expected ratio). 130 pounds of meat (about $1.76 per pound).

Red Broilers:

The Label Rouge (France) birds grow to 2.25 kg in 12 weeks, while the fast-growing broilers (Cornish cross) reach the same weight in 6 weeks. The carcass is generally more elongated and has a smaller breast and larger legs than conventional carcasses. In addition, slower-growing breeds are more suitable to outdoor production than fast -growing broilers.


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