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The tulips are up! — 5 Comments

  1. Hi Jackie I ordered my Cornish cross chicks from a hatchery so I cannot speak to thier bloodlines.I bought them to raise for meat only and they do grow amazingly fast.It could well be the climate as it does get well into the upper 90’s here in summer,sometimes even over 100.I raise mainly Old English Games with a scattering of New Hampshire/Rhode Island Reds.I prefer these breeds as they just seem to thrive better here and they can forage for part of thier living.I Raise them mainly for eggs and use the surplus rooster that are hatched for meat.As you say this is a personal preference and just what works best for me.As with most things other people’s results will vary.

  2. Cornish cross meat chickens are “crossed” or cross bred. One parent is a Cornish and the other a white rock. They are known as Cornish “crosses” or Cornish rocks. I haven’t had the problems C.E. had, but maybe it’s the breeding of his birds or his climate, regarding the heat problems. Mine foraged real well with our other chickens. Yes, the other traditional breeds make plenty good meat, but the Cornish crosses make a whole lot more in only a couple of months.

    Like everything else, it’s a personal choice as to what’s “best”. And that can be affected by climate, available feed and your own likes and dislikes.

    To keep the crossbreds going you can simply keep a cornish rooster and several white rock hens. The chicks might not be exactly the same as the commercial birds, but will turn out pretty fine. I have a rooster that came from an egg from one of my Cornish rock hens crossed with my old Aracauna rooster. He’s heavy breasted, white, but erect and more active than the Cornish crosses. I’m saving him for breeding because of his attributes. You can certainly breed your own chickens!

  3. Mr.Penland Please excuse my presumption to adresss the question you asked Jackie but I have some experience with raising Cornish cross chickens and in my humble opinion they have more health issues than leg problems.They grow at such a rapid rate that their major organs cannot keep up.In thier droppings I noticed large amounts of undigested feed and at least the ones I had seemed incapable of foraging at all.I had several to die of heat/dehydration issues even though water was available just outside their shade shelter.Now I stick to more traditional breeds such as Rhode Island /New Hampshire Reds.They grow slower but do not have issues like the Cornish cross.Just my opinion.

  4. Jackie,

    I hope you and your family are doing well.

    I have a question in regards your comment about raising Cornish rock broilers. Last night I was reading the new BHM book, Chickens a beginner’s handbook(which I think is excellent). The part about meat chickens got me to thinking. I’d like to try the big Cornish birds. The book talks about Cornish cross. Are they are significantly different from Cornish rocks? Forgive my ignorance, we had a few chickens growing up, but they were just chickens, the old man wasn’t too picky about breeds or proper names.

    Anyway, I want to raise my own birds and keep a self replenishing food supply going, rather than buying chicks from chicken farmers every few months. The book indicates that the Cornish cross birds will be butchering size in about three months and that you have to be careful so that they don’t get so big that their legs are injured by the weight. With that kind of problem, how do you keep breeding birds going?

    I look forward to reading your articles in the new special issue and I hope you and your family have a great Spring.

  5. Oooohhh, so *that’s* where our geese went! You’re right, there’s nothing like that call. Enjoy them and all your signs of spring! And don’t forget to tell us what you do decide to name your little does!