Well the meat chickens are out and about and loving it.
They have their own yard separate from our egg laying chickens but within the same large enclosure.
Before we ordered the meat chickens I removed a large section of the grass from what would be their yard and planted out a patch of Clucker Tucker that I ordered through a local company Green Harvest. Clucker Tucker is a mix of barrel medic, bok choy, buckwheat, forage chicory, clover, cocksfoot, linseed, lucerne, millet, forage plantain, silverbeet, subclover and sunflower. Most have vigorous root systems that will quickly regrow leaves that are eaten and will tolerate a bit of scratching once established.
The next two photos were taken about a week ago when the chickens were six weeks old. As you can see they are huge for their age and very un-attractive.
My best friend visited today and she had not seen the meat chickens before but she summed them up quite well. She said they look inbred. I think that pretty much sums them up.
There is something just not right about them. They sort of look like chickens and sort of behave like chickens, but anyone who has has a flock of laying chickens would see straight away that they are are just not normal chickens.
This has been quite a learning experience so far and the final tests will be at the end of the process when it comes to butchering and eating.
We will do a tally at the end to see exactly how much it has cost us to produce each bird but we are almost 100% convinced we will choose a heavy heritage breed for meat in the future. So now we are looking at which breeds might be suitable.