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Thread: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

  
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    Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    Howdy,

    I have a line of greys that are cutting machines. Problem is that, while overfed (to my shame), they are bigger than I like.
    The absolute smallest bird I have is over 5 pounds. Many will be over 6 pounds. This is consistent. Question is how would I
    attempt to breed their size down. Just use the smallest hens? Don't want to lose their ability.

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    Member KnuckleheadBDom's Avatar
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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    I hear breeding them in the "hot" months make them smaller, haven't personally experienced it myself,
    Then I have also heard inbreeding makes them smaller, haven't yet gotten to this point myself
    Finally there's the selection process where you could choose the smallest
    Can't go wrong with all three but it isn't so e z p z for sure hope that helps and God bless

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    Yea, I have two year olds, Three year olds and stags. All very consistent but all big. It,s hard to find a mach to try out the offspring.

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    Quote Originally Posted by KnuckleheadBDom View Post
    I hear breeding them in the "hot" months make them smaller, haven't personally experienced it myself,
    Then I have also heard inbreeding makes them smaller, haven't yet gotten to this point myself
    Finally there's the selection process where you could choose the smallest
    Can't go wrong with all three but it isn't so e z p z for sure hope that helps and God bless
    Late hatch chicks will knock the size a little. Good luck.

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    Quote Originally Posted by ezpz View Post
    Howdy,

    I have a line of greys that are cutting machines. Problem is that, while overfed (to my shame), they are bigger than I like.
    The absolute smallest bird I have is over 5 pounds. Many will be over 6 pounds. This is consistent. Question is how would I
    attempt to breed their size down. Just use the smallest hens? Don't want to lose their ability.
    . I can relate to your situation. My fowl are much the same. I also had my. Fowl much over weight. When they gotsomefeathers and I started handling them I realized it. I cut their feed in half for the last month and oh what a difference. 6-7 oz. of fat gone of nearly every bird. My. Hens were way fat too. I butchered 18 of them a month or so and seen the evidence when I gutted them. But to the other point that they are just large, mine are also. I've raised them for over 50 years and they have always been big. The bigger ones seem to be the best ones. Very hard to get a 6 lb. rooster matched. I'd recommend going through your hens and weighing them. Also your cocks. Just don't breed the extremely large ones. Also good record keeping will show you were the biggest ones are coming from. Good Luck!

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    Quote Originally Posted by ezpz View Post
    Howdy,

    I have a line of greys that are cutting machines. Problem is that, while overfed (to my shame), they are bigger than I like.
    The absolute smallest bird I have is over 5 pounds. Many will be over 6 pounds. This is consistent. Question is how would I
    attempt to breed their size down. Just use the smallest hens? Don't want to lose their ability.
    Sir is the problem genetics or you have a heavy hand? More than likely it is you. When I pick up a cock he should float in my hand. If he is like a bowling ball in weight then it is I over feeding. If fat feed one tablespoon of soaked oats a day for a week. Plus put heavy straw in ever over weight birds cage.

    If genetics guck smallest hens and cock for brood stock
    Last edited by BostonMurphy; December 20th, 2017 at 01:42 AM.

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    I think the way you are raising them may play a part,but let's start with the breeding. Use pullets that are 10-14 months old...they will lay smaller eggs. Then feed the chicks what they will eat at a feeding. Do not leave feed in front of them all day. Put the on grain mixed with crumbles by 8 weeks, cut back on really high protein feed. Give them plenty of room to fly and scratch in. Feed once a day when on a cord. Repeat...oh yeah send me a six pounder I got a match for him.

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    Quote Originally Posted by samiyam007 View Post
    I think the way you are raising them may play a part,but let's start with the breeding. Use pullets that are 10-14 months old...they will lay smaller eggs. Then feed the chicks what they will eat at a feeding. Do not leave feed in front of them all day. Put the on grain mixed with crumbles by 8 weeks, cut back on really high protein feed. Give them plenty of room to fly and scratch in. Feed once a day when on a cord. Repeat...oh yeah send me a six pounder I got a match for him.
    Thanks for all the input. Last spring I took 5 brothers to a show. Went 5 straight. They were lighter then but still over 5 pounds. They are just built that way.
    My lack of handling and attention to their weight is certainly part of the problem but not all.

    Certainly you are welcome to match into me with the six pound rooster. He will need to bring all he's got!

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    Not that big a problem with having heavy birds, lots good advice of how to bring size down It's much much much harder to go the other way and gain size.

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    My only problem with my gamefowls. they have a bit of shamo blood in them, thus the heavier weight.

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    You misunderstood me....you send me a good 6 lb. bird and I show him here....after I breed him to some shorty greys.....lol

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    Best bet is to ask Wayne szalinski he shrunk his own kids back in the day ��������������
    Last edited by Black duck game; December 20th, 2017 at 08:19 AM.

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    Quote Originally Posted by Black duck game View Post
    Best bet is to ask Wayne szalinski he shrunk his own kids back in the day ��������������
    Usually the offspring will shrink the 3rd time around they are mated. Maybe their genes were properly introduced.

    Sent from my Lenovo P1ma40 using Tapatalk

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    I breed big birds because personally I prefer them on the bigger side. Plenty are close to 6lbs or a little over at show weight. I feed one level Vienna sausage can of feed per day per bird. But, I feed straight layer pellet and this keeps them in good flesh with little fat on them. During the keep I add 1 can of fruit cocktail per 10 birds to the pellets, this will trim them down just that little bit more and keep them there.

    If you hatch in may or June this will also have them coming smaller but in my experience they won't be as healthy.

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    Quote Originally Posted by pacop View Post
    I breed big birds because personally I prefer them on the bigger side. Plenty are close to 6lbs or a little over at show weight. I feed one level Vienna sausage can of feed per day per bird. But, I feed straight layer pellet and this keeps them in good flesh with little fat on them. During the keep I add 1 can of fruit cocktail per 10 birds to the pellets, this will trim them down just that little bit more and keep them there.
    Holy Toledo ..................................

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    Quote Originally Posted by BostonMurphy View Post
    Holy Toledo ..................................
    I'm just wondering were Toledo is? I've personally met pacop and he got a couple large cocks from me. I haven't had much correspondence with him since, but I'd put my money on him in a poultry show. If he was showing the big offspring he raised from the two.

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    Well I've heard that breeding an older hen and rooster will give you larger roosters. I believe it to be true because I have a grey stag that is hitting 5 and half pounds. But honestly I prefer my birds be on the bigger side, big, strong and healthy

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    If you are single breeding, perhaps you can narrow down the hen(s) that deliver(s) your preferred weight range which will be in the low 5's vice breeding multiple hens to a cock. Genetically, you probably wont be able to nor want to go below that mark, that's just them and for the simple fact that you still want to feed well and hatch at optimal times, which I agree with you on the late hatching. Down here anything beyond April is no good, a cull as they won't grow well I don't care what ya do. I had some Kelso's that came in around the 6 pound mark, good birds. I usually got to bring them in at 5.13 to 5.15 and the mom was a tiny thing so it all depends on the mom's inherent/hereditary gene pool. Im not sure what your breeding methods are for this line which is vital to solving your issue and if you have tried breeding the best and smallest one to the mom who produced him? Then from there take a pullet from this smaller rooster and continue while keeping a close eye on the feeding. Bottom line to me is your situation lies within finding that brood fowl from that breed that will naturally throw more of the those smaller ones to your liking but it's gonna take time (years) as there is no way around it unfortunately to ascertain that data and still yet no guarantees of consistency in the yield unless you opt to try the late hatching route to see if that works. You are about to embark on streamlining and separating physical genetics and it's not a magic wand nor a quick fix. Attention to detail, patience and time will be the ultimate deciding factors. Best wishes. Semper Fidelis
    Last edited by KevinG; December 20th, 2017 at 04:14 PM.

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    Senior Member leonidas's Avatar
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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    just my experience with late hatch but by bullstags they were as big as the cocks or nearing it. inbreeding works but the first few will be hit and miss this year i kept one inbreed stag that was low station and one from another pair that was high station. one early hatched was the short one late hatch was tall

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    Line Breeding and Selection will get them where you need them to be.. Just my opinion ....

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    There's that word again (selection ). Must be the magic word.

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    WwwwSelection is the key to success. No fought about this.

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    LOL to some it is.. Any successful breeder has an eye for it (selection) .. You either have it or you don`t.. You Can`t learn it from a book.. Merry Christmas..
    Quote Originally Posted by hoghunterdave View Post
    There's that word again (selection ). Must be the magic word.

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    Selection is the key. What do your hens weigh? Try some hens from the last batch to be hatched. If it’s size your selecting for choose smaller hens.

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    Breed for genetics cull for performance. If you don’t get it try harder.

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    LOL.. I agree.. May you & yours have a Blessed and Merry Christmas..



    Quote Originally Posted by SURUHANU671 View Post
    Breed for genetics cull for performance. If you don’t get it try harder.

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    Quote Originally Posted by antair View Post
    Usually the offspring will shrink the 3rd time around they are mated. Maybe their genes were properly introduced.

    Sent from my Lenovo P1ma40 using Tapatalk
    I believe this is one way of locking by genetics same results with inbreeding..

    Sent from my Lenovo P1ma40 using Tapatalk

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    Just breed smallest to smallest , but don’t ignore performance.

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    You too al Sanchez.like minds keep the sport headed forward but people that think out of the box make strides.

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    Re: Needing to shrink my birds. Best approach?

    Amen Brother, Amen... God Bless....
    Quote Originally Posted by SURUHANU671 View Post
    You too al Sanchez.like minds keep the sport headed forward but people that think out of the box make strides.

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