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Raising Game Birds

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Posted on : 10:11 AM | By : Nic | In :

One thing I really want to get into after we move is raise some game birds, probably pheasants or quail.  Unlike chickens, they aren't classified as a farm animal and they are much smaller and quieter so much more tolerable in the city.  But, they are similar to chickens in how they are raised.  The best website for info on this is on City Farmer, and it seems like quite a straightforward process that requires very little space.   


They are a little more delicate than chickens and seem susceptible to weather and disease.  The website above recommends medicated turkey starter as chick feed, but it is inaccurate in saying that unmedicated turkey starter doesn't exist.  Because of the growing popularity of organic meat, you can get organic turkey crumb for about $30 for a 50 pound bag.  Once they are grown they need to be put into covered pens.  I hate the thought of the tiny cages so more of a tiny bird run that could be moved around would be more of my style.

You need more birds than you would with chickens.  It takes one quail to feed one person, and one pheasant to feed two people if you were to roast them.  I suppose if you were cutting up the meat and putting it into other stuff you could stretch that further.  A pair of pheasants needs an 18x8" pen, perhaps slightly smaller if you are providing enough protein since they are a little prone to cannibalism.  But with the pen that size you really couldn't have too many birds -  two birds need 12 square feet, and if you used 60 square feet you could have 10 birds.

That size could also be portable and I could move them around the garden to grab pests.  

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