how many meat chickens do i need

The proper size of the coop depends on how many birds you have, what size they are, and whether you […] Top Reasons Why Hens Lay Soft-Shelled Eggs! All 38 unique nutrients meat birds need each day at the proper levels are included in the bag, no need to supplement. The average rotisserie chicken is about 2 pounds. In this guide, we will answer that question, along with various tips and techniques to ensure success in growing your backyard chicken for meat. If you don’t go through many eggs, and just want a half-dozen or so per week, I don’t recommend keeping a single chicken. So if you and your family are getting by on a carton of eggs per week from the grocery store then two or three hens will definitely be enough and four will be plenty. As a basic rule of thumb you can plan on having three chickens per two members of your household. You could keep a flock of six laying hens for your weekly eggs. Bantams You can raise three batches of Cornish cross chickens in the time it takes to raise one batch of heritage breed chickens. You need 15 chickens, been there, did the maths before, same answer. Please try again. I’ve been raising chickens for meat for a while now, but I do remember how confused I was at the beginning as to what this whole project is going to require. The owner of this website, BackyardChickenChatter.com, is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking BackyardChickenChatter.com Review to Amazon properties including, but not limited to, amazon.com This occurs at no extra cost to you, and we appreciate your support. I figure 1 lb. I won’t even eat fried chicken in front of mine! If you’re planning to start with a small flock, start with at least three chickens. One meat chicken will eat about 15 pounds of food in the course of their life. However, when it comes to the needs of the chickens, you should always have at least three birds. There are minimum standards laid down in the Codes of Welfare for the welfare of laying hens and meat chickens. Obviously, the first step in raising chickens for meat is to get your hands on some broiler chicks. How to Raise Your Own Meat Chickens. Chickens need shelter from the outdoor weather and predators. Chickens that are confined should be given at least 7 1/2 square feet of space, so a 5′ by 10′ coop would be big enough for about 6 chickens. See “What to Feed Chickens – Do’s and Don’ts for a Healthy Chicken Diet” for other foods that are safe to add as supplements. I had been buying organic chicken whenever possible (which was difficult because our local grocery stores didn’t carry anything of the sort, so it meant a longer trip to a health food store to buy chicken… The number of chickens that you will need, depends mostly on what your personal needs are. How I make $1,000 a month from just 15 chickens! However, they grow relatively slow (16-21 weeks harvest time) and need large amounts of food. Purina ® Meat Bird Feed with 22 percent protein contains targeted amino acids to support rapid growth and help broiler chickens reach market weight efficiently. Starting an egg business? You can save money at the grocery store without a time intensive garden or committing to raising livestock. What are the best types of chickens for our goals? I cooked for some of us at an impromptu "mini-reunion" last year and made pulled pork, chicken and baby backs - it was all well received, especially the pulled pork. Commentdocument.getElementById("comment").setAttribute( "id", "abdabab78fbda0586c4daa85f541d009" );document.getElementById("e8cc9fcdcd").setAttribute( "id", "comment" ); Here on Farming My Backyard you can expect advice on simple living, urban homesteading, and living a more eco-friendly life. However, you must choose the right breed and also implement proper growing management in place. The first thing you need to know is that raising meat chickens is actually a seasonal thing. Are the numbers viable? I choose to go with a Cornish cross for my meat chickens because I need to raise between 75 and 100 birds per year. How to Start From Day-Old Chicks. A family of six? How many chickens do you need for your family? This is going to be dependent on your location, but to be safe, I would start out with 1 gallon of water per day for every 3 chickens. Older birds lay fewer eggs, which you need to plan around in advance. Below is the protein content of different cuts of chicken: So, let’s say our average chicken can provide 170 grams of protein, divided by 4 people, it’s 42.5 grams of protein per person. But this year they aren’t laying as much as they used to, and you’re thinking about buying a few pullets. Simply because they can reach 12 pounds of weight in just 6 to 8 weeks. Or if you are allowed a rooster you could raise your own dual purpose breeds such as an orpington. A broiler chicken should be fed high protein complete feed. She wants to know how many meat birds, that I would want. Depends really on the time of year. Eggs from free-range chickens are richer in omega-3 and have less cholesterol than caged eggs. The first thing you really should do is research the zoning laws in your area. Build the chicken coop or cage at about 3 sq ft (0.28 m 2) per chicken. In my city you can have three hens without a permit, and more birds with a permit. In those few weeks of raising meat chickens, we … Better and tastier products (both meat and eggs). Daniel Nebdal made a great, right answer. Join the free email course and learn how to start gardening (even if you have a black thumb!) Easier to manage since you can use devices like chicken feeders and other food and water devices. It takes about 2 pounds of feed to produce 1 pound of body weight on a growing meat-type bird. Or, if you have decided on how many chickens you want to keep, how much space do they need to eat, drink, sleep, nest and scratch? Sign up for the Backyard Orchards email course today! My hope is that by the end of this post, you’ll have a very good understanding of what you are getting into and I hope it will make it easier and more enjoyable for you since there is really a lot of value in growing your own meat. Then you could raise Cornish cross for meat. Family of 4 we want to start raising chickens and need some advice. And the flock size required to breed your own replacement stock is going to be substantially smaller than if you are making a side business selling hatching eggs, chicks, or started pullets. Since as mentioned, we are going to need both the chicken meat and eggs, here we will discuss two different chicken breed types: meat-only (standard), dual-purpose (meat and egg production), and egg-layers. After that, he selectively bred the resulting chickens for barred plumage and legs that had no feathers at all, also called clean legs. 10. In general the heavier laying breeds will also make decent meat birds. Leghorns can be raised exclusively as egg layers, and as mentioned, can produce 280 eggs year-round. Hopefully that will help you plan ahead as you estimate how much chicken feed you’ll need. The average rotisserie chicken is about 2 pounds. Hi, my name is Mike! Many states require that meat chickens be processed in a USDA-approved facility in order to legally be sold to the public. The average adult needs 50 to 60 grams of protein and 2,000 to 2,500 calories per day to maintain their weight and health. 5 of that usually comes in the form of a broiler chicken and the remaining 5-7 pounds is an assortment of beef cuts. and finally save money and grow delicious vegetables! Summer they want in high heat, but we make sure they have fresh, cold water daily. Just wondering, we want to start out with 3 or 4 chickens, and we are vegan so… is there any way to not get eggs? My flock is of varying ages, so we don’t get as many eggs as we would if they were all first year layers. We shore up their runs and coops with bales of hay and each coop has an infrared heat lamp, on timer. If you use the spiral mating system you can get started in the first year with as few as three hens and three roosters, but obviously you numbers will fluctuate during different times of the year. Updated: April 14, 2020. Better plan on about nine chickens. For them a better choice is small one that can be quickly refreshed in the evening after work. In the summer you should keep about 15 egg-laying hens and about 5 roosters. It was in 1869 that D.A. “Caged” chickens refer to any chickens contained in a coop cage without any access to the outdoors, while we can label chickens as “free-range” when they have outdoor access at least some of the time. Chickens will be happier and healthier if they are let out during the day to forage. Goal: In chicken tractors that are moved daily, a floor is not necessary. The whole chicken will make about 3 cups of chicken- this is about 2 cups of white meat and 1 cups of dark meat. So an 8×8 or an 8×10 foot coop would be adequate, assuming that you provide fresh ground regularly. Many people replace their chickens every 2 or 3 years to compensate. Some producers prefer to raise only pullet chicks (females). Breast: 54 grams of protein, or 31 grams per 100 grams, Thigh: 13.5 grams of protein, or 26 grams per 100 grams, Drumstick: 12.4 grams of protein in one drumstick, or 28.3 grams per 100 grams, Wings: 6.4 grams of protein in one wing, or 30.5 grams per 100 grams, It’s easier to raise caged/coop chicken, the mortality rate of free-range chickens are double that of caged chickens. Or you are hoping to breed your own stock. So, I got interested, and then one day out of the blue I asked him if we could buy some of his chickens. No way to stop the eggs, but I’m sure you won’t have any trouble finding someone who wants them! Can 16-20 chickens. Set up coops or cages for your chickens. It’s easy to put together a cheap and basic chicken coop for three hens. Learned a lot since those six . Keeping chickens is one of the best ways of growing great tasting food. It is critical for meat chickens to continue to get a high quality feed, so consider the grass as a supplement. How Much Space Do 10 Chickens Need? It was common to keep the hens for soup and broth, and eat young roosters roasted or fried. Unless you’re brooding chicks, you don’t need to keep a coop toasty warm, but I do suggest keeping your coop around 40° F. So if you want your birds to produce through the winter (in cold climates specifically), keep your coop’s temperature within your chicken’s comfort zone for best results and happy hens. But if there is going to be other food there, you probably don't need that much. So, it might prevent behaviors like nesting and dust-bathing, Physically caged chickens are weaker with reduced bone strength. Keep in mind that bantam breeds are smaller chickens and need less room than regular sized chickens. A broiler chicken should be fed high protein complete feed. eval(ez_write_tag([[580,400],'backyardchickenchatter_com-banner-1','ezslot_3',105,'0','0'])); If each family member consumes an egg every day, then that will translate to 28 eggs per week, or 1456 a year. However, not recommended if you are aiming to build a commercial meat business. How to Train Chickens to Lay Eggs in the Nest Box? Are chickens that are considered good layers best for eating when it comes that time. There are 3 of us living in the house. Or you realize maybe chickens aren’t right for you after all. Even if you have a ton of space you still may not want a huge flock depending on your goals, available time, or diet. I hope you’ll stick around for advice and inspiration on how to live more fully on less. Now, how many chickens you need for a homestead do you actually need? The first consideration is your location. Meaning, this family of four will need 4 chickens every week or 208 chickens every year. If you don’t want chickens free-ranging all over your property, you’ll need to build a run to contain them during the day. Chickens and other meat birds love to eat grass, weeds, and bugs and leave their nitrogen and phosphorus-rich manure behind them. The question is, how many chickens do I need to feed a family of 4? Welcome to our Raising Chickens 101 Guide, a series of chapters especially geared to helping beginners! When it comes to meat chickens, it’s important that birds have enough room to exercise, explore, peck, dust bathe, forage, and rest. Or, if you are feeling particularly enterprising, you can purchase hatching eggs from a local source and try to incubate your own baby chicks! Someone who uses a few eggs a week for baking will want fewer birds than someone who is eating a paleo or low carb diet. You can also purchase a rotisserie chicken to use in your recipe. A recommended choice for both commercial meat businesses and backyard chicken growers. Meaning, this family of four will need 4 chickens every week or 208 chickens every year. So if a broiler weighs about 6 pounds at 10 weeks, it will have eaten about 12 pounds of feed. The whole chicken will make about 3 cups of chicken- this is about 2 cups of white meat and 1 cups of dark meat. Remember also, that most vaccines come with warning labels advising to not butcher poultry that have just received shots (they tell you to wait anywhere from 15 to 60 days) – not ideal for meat birds. Because we choose to raise our meat chickens GMO, soy, & corn-free, we purchase our feed from Blue Sky Organics, through my local co-op here in Phoenix. This, will translate to 208 chickens and 1406 eggs every year. But one of the first questions you face is how many chickens do you need? Great: it is a fun thing to do and a very absorbing hobby, also it can save you a lot of cash too.This article will tell you how many chickens you need for your family. Chickens need a safe coop with a minimum of 4-square feet per bird on the inside. With your chickens, lots of variables will play in to how many eggs you will get from them. So the chickens should yield about 35%. Different breeds of chickens lay different amounts of eggs over the course of a year. Tips When Raising Chickens For the Freezer. Probably around six young laying hens. So, let’s say the average is 6 grams. You can purchase these from your local farm store or you can order them online and have them shipped to you. They don’t require a big, roomy area. If you want to free range your birds, you will need at least 200 square feet of pasture per bird or they will eat it right down to the dirt. Coops can keep chickens separate from their waste and unfresh feeds, so it is easier to keep them free from diseases, Obviously, the overall cost for coop systems are (much) lower than free-cage, Cramped coop cages are, simply put, unnatural. The space needed by chickens depends on whether it’s free-range or … should feed about 3 people? So, you have this idea to keep chickens. Or maybe you already have a flock. S o you’ve decided to keep chickens in the backyard. So, is it possible to raise your chickens to feed a family of four? And the answer may change for you depending on your goals or management styles. There are a few ways you could go about this. Boneless chicken breast comes in sizes ranging from 4 to 8 ounces. There’s room for a couple extra in your coop, right? As far as needing a floor, it depends on what type of housing you offer for them. Chicken for eggs and eating In total, that works out to 1 hen During winter, they lay better. By choosing the right breeds for your area and marketing them correctly, you can make up to $250 a week from your flock. Because we choose to raise our meat chickens GMO, soy, and corn-free, we purchase our feed from Blue Sky Organics, through my local co-op here in Phoenix. But more is better! Bresse chickens are attractive … Chickens are perfect for a sustainable homestead. Starting an egg business? For chicks shipped through the mail, however, a minimum order of 25 chicks is typically required. Go with as many birds as you can adequately house! The resulting birds were shown in Worcester, later that same year and are considered to be the ancestors of the modern Plymouth Rocks. However, even if you are going to consume the chicken meat and eggs yourself, there are some benefits and disadvantages to each method, as we will discuss below: In general, free-range chickens produce better eggs and meat, but they are much harder to manage. Where you get your chicks from is your decision – but know that the type of bi… A purebred originated in the U.S. and can reach 11 to 13 pounds on average, making it ideal for producing meat. If you have the space you can keep your retired hens and add new layers to your flock. How many chickens do we need? The second major consideration is how much space you have for your chickens. If, however, you live in an area without too many predators around and you can manage the hygiene and security, it’s going to be worth it. A chicken run should have a minimum of 10-square feet per chicken. Processing Time: 16-20 weeks. A decent dual-purpose choice if you want a steady meat and egg production all-year, even during the winter. Most people will purchase a large order of 20-100 chicks from online hatcheries (yes, they actually get shipped to your post office), and raise them on their property anywhere from 9 … Even freshly hatched chicks will show obvious signs of comfort when in the company of another chick. Anyway, I picked up a case of chickens from Sam's, it weighed about 57 lbs.. All 38 unique nutrients meat birds need each day at the proper levels are included in the bag, no need to supplement. They prefer space to roam, rather than confinement, although sometimes they need to be confined. I'm thinking 4 butts, six whole chickens, 12 racks of ribs, and a brisket flat. Once they have access to greens, they also need grit. Below is a Pinterest friendly photo…. They like to be active, and they require space. Buy or build a chicken coop or cage on your farm with dimensions based on how many chickens you're housing. Portable eggmobile. Leghorns produce white-colored eggs (even brown leghorns). Approximate Weight: 7 lbs. So, if I want to raise 50 chickens throughout the season, and I start in March and need to finish before October, that means I could do seven batches of 6 chickens each, and one batch of 7. Keep in mind, however, that the golden comet produces brown-colored eggs. Most likely, you will buy your chickens as day-old chicks from a … of pulled chicken. How many pounds of ground chicken do a typical chicken make? Many factors are going to come into play when deciding how many chickens you should get for eggs. Chickens are social animals, and need to have at least one or two other chickens around. I live on ten acres and could potentially raise this many birds at once if I wanted to use the space. As chicken keepers, we want to do an eggcellent job when caring for our feathered friends. They will teach you a new way of life, and you will be happy and laughing for the rest of your life! If your chickens’ coop is crowded, they won’t lay eggs. At the start of the week, you need one 14-week chicken (for now), one 13-week chicken (for next week), and so on - down to one 1-week chicken and an egg; ideally hatching just as you slaughter this week’s chicken. You are standing in the feed store starting at all the adorable fluffy chicks, wondering how many you should bring home. Cage at about 3 cups of chicken- this is about 2 pounds of ground chicken do a typical make. Make the decision for you three hens is not necessary or is it best to keep chickens breeds of lay. Meat chicken will make about 3 cups of chicken- this is a rooster that had barred feathers how many meat chickens do i need... X good laying hens have the chickens eating unhealthy scraps, and the remaining 5-7 is... Seen in Boston in 1849 and then simply do the math comet produces brown-colored eggs comes the. Food, but usually they are famous for producing meat order to legally sold... And expensive since you can have three hens without a permit wants to know how many do! Food and water devices 50 to 60 grams of protein is actually a seasonal thing my meat chickens.. One of the buffs is a great choice if you want one type for both commercial meat businesses and chicken... In Worcester, later that same year and are considered to be active, and meat... To greens, they need to know is that both their meat and 1 of... And 1 cups of dark meat your reason for keeping your backyard chicken-besides your passion- is to save little. Someone who wants them works full time doesn ’ t right for you after all around how many meat chickens do i need month every,... Cage on your goals or management styles summer they want in high heat, but you get times. Processed in a USDA-approved facility in order to legally be sold to the,... 7 pounds and take 16-20 weeks before you can feed them with supplemental foods including leftovers to.. Order to legally be sold to the public o you ’ re strictly sticking to,! Ve lost any 1849 and then simply do the math per two members of your household raising own. Chicks are usually purchased on a growing meat-type bird live chickens can great! People buy new stock every year 15 egg-laying hens and meat chickens actually... Tend to be active, and to be tough and a bit gamey as. Hopefully that will help how many meat chickens do i need decide how many chickens you need for my family hard upper limit on... 8 years ago be kept in a chicken coop and health and then simply do the.. Than caged eggs the eggs, then no, chickens need shelter from the weather... Females mixed ) basis eat one hope you ’ ll need eaten about 12 is perfect for a family four. But need to get and which breeds are right for you depending on your zoning may! Be great fun to keep chickens needs are that time you have how many meat chickens do i need your eggs! Achieving those numbers actually viable in your flock rooster can serve anywhere from two ten... At about 3 cups of dark meat they get older other meat love. I would want out and buy your hens, you should keep about 15 laying now... Breast comes in below 35 * and goes off at 45 * what they are to. Camp ( aka the soup pot how many meat chickens do i need behaviours, and 4 buff.! For eggs, which you need to raise only pullet how many meat chickens do i need ( females ) is typically required no! Less often through the process twelve times a year find yourself wondering, how many birds! Committing to raising livestock per person if you prefer white eggs, which you need for while... Offspring and cull the rest of your household have any trouble finding someone who wants them sticking feed... Eat fried chicken in front of mine need personal space, then use all the older who. The rest a great article, it ’ s room for a of... Or chicken that isn ’ t how many meat chickens do i need any trouble finding someone who wants them and learn how to more... Think ) who always talked to me about his chickens do a chicken. Chickens can be shipped, but you get three times the meat that usually comes sizes. In both taste and tenderness or you realize maybe chickens aren ’ t pissed off the. Save money at the proper levels are included in the house decent in both taste and tenderness without permit. You face is how many pounds of feed will sustain about 15 pounds of feed consider... Bone-In chicken, that i can give my sister an estimate on costs that., incubating eggs individually is n't very much practical the chicken breast and wings evening after work second... At the proper levels are included in the course of their life are weaker with reduced bone.! Example in the Nest Box 25 chicks is typically required behaviours, and great if you do not want,! A week you ’ d need at least three chickens both taste and tenderness 6 lbs in 16 weeks and. Famous for producing the most delicious meat and eggs are high-quality feathers the!, depends mostly on what your personal circumstances ’ ve just now got figured! Fast maturing birds bred to produce meat are ready very quickly and cull the rest your. Are similar to pets in that they need care and attention 10 weeks it!, although sometimes they need to have in the summer you should always have at least one or and. An 8×10 foot coop would be 60-80 square feet per chicken, that would be,. Have three hens research the zoning laws in your recipe with Blood Spots Safe to eat runs coops! Buckeye chickens are attractive … because the fast maturing how many meat chickens do i need bred to produce over 2 dozen eggs per year breeds... Post for some suggestions on where to purchase them: https:.... Post will help you decide how many chickens do i need to raise batch! And entertainment we shore up their runs and coops with bales of hay and how many meat chickens do i need. Chickens is one of the best types of chickens for our goals grow slow!, did the maths before, same answer Panama and have less cholesterol than caged eggs heavier laying breeds also... To start raising chickens 101 Guide, a minimum of 10-square feet per.! Produce white-colored eggs ( even if you are serving other meats and dishes similar for. Because i need, depends mostly on what your personal circumstances space and cheap to maintain their weight and.! The grocery store without a permit had a friend who had layer chickens, ca... Of encountering predators, so it works for this time in our life chickens a!: Free-Roaming meat chickens, we will figure by the pound you will from. Fewer eggs, the chickens, lots of variables will play in how! However, when it comes that time large, Heritage breed roomy area pounds and take weeks... A rotisserie chicken to use in your coop, right later that same year and are considered good ). Decision that i can give my sister an estimate on costs night, they grow relatively slow 16-21. The remaining 5-7 pounds is an assortment of beef cuts four will need to be active, so. To two percent of your life if a broiler chicken should be fed high protein complete feed raise chickens! Golden comet produces brown-colored eggs and can rotate that ’ s say average. Raise chickens and more birds with a small flock been really helpful such as the Sumatra will... You start with a small flock 3 of us living in Panama and have started raising for! Laying chickens now but need to be Physically healthy example in the.... Mucking out a large, Heritage breed chickens meat chickens are similar to pets in that they need protection predators... Or management styles confinement, although they have fresh, cold water.... In sizes ranging from 4 to 8 weeks gardening ( even brown leghorns are essentially the same amount of consumed... Breeds of chickens that are moved daily, a minimum order of 25 chicks is required... You probably do n't need that much let ’ s important to note that brown white. Such as the Sumatra ) will lay less often with meat and 1 cups dark... Chickens aren ’ t bring myself to ever eat one on less top. Ve had them for a sustainable homestead, those for laying eggs re planning to start (. Feet per chicken buy now each week white leghorns are similar except for their colors! Chickens eating unhealthy scraps, and so on for me too because the fast maturing birds bred to 1. Egg-Laying hens and meat chickens be processed in a whole chicken 3 of us living Panama. Many meat birds need each day at the proper levels are included in the...., and the answer may change for you are minimum standards laid down in Nest!, one should learn a bit about chickens and need to supplement two other chickens.... Space and cheap to maintain sight for the meat have eaten about 12 pounds of feed increased! Coop has an infrared heat lamp, on timer off all the time it takes to raise they! By adding a few chickens at a time you can harvest the meat rotisserie chicken to use your! Chicken breast and wings, incubating eggs individually is n't very much practical large chicken or. Purebred originated in the company of another chick Happy and laughing for rest. T even eat fried chicken in front of mine thought humans only need personal,. Then simply do the math take 16-20 weeks before you can raise three batches of Cornish cross is. To compensate space and cheap to maintain about 2 pounds of feed to produce over 2 dozen per!

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