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Market For Pheasant Chicks And Poults


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#16 Crosshair

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Posted 09 May 2016 - 07:51 pm

Also, technology has moved on a bit now. There's lots of relatively cheap and reliable monitoring systems. There's no excuse to be utterly tied to it like the old days.
My friend is just starting out with a bit of rearing and I keep telling him not to be afraid to make the system easy from the start!

At my old shoot, with just a few extra mannollas and some picca feeders we went from feeding the partridges twice a day every single day right through to twelve weeks; to feeding every other day once they were out of the rings. It made such a difference. My headkeeper said "I don't know why we didn't do that years ago" but it's easy to become entrenched.

Add to that a few temperature alarms, a rain sensor, thermostatically controlled heaters, in line medication, change over valves and some good attention to detail and you're catching up with the chicken boys who can look after 40,000 at the touch of a button single-handed in their sleep ;)
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#17 Rabid

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Posted 09 May 2016 - 07:54 pm

I gave it up 3 years ago now.....glad I'm away from it.
The huge rearing operations are killing it for the small game farms. Rearing in huge sheds with state of the art equipment is very hard to compete against.
I'd say you need to have orders lined up and doing it yourself (odd help at biting time and catching up) you'd need to look at 30-40 thousand to make it worth the time and effort. At a £1-1.50 profit it's not a bad seasons graft if it all goes well.
Apart from the weather the things most annoying is the rising cost of feed, gas and equipment yet the keepers don't want to fork out any more for poults. In the end it's just easier to go with the cheap option and if they have any disasters these huge companies just crates up another few thousand and send them up.
Atb if you go for it.
Oh and see when it's pishing down in the middle of the night and the rain wakes me up.....,I just laugh and go back to sleep now....


Thanks Lab.
Can I ask what was the decider for you packing it in ?

I would want orders before I even set an egg, thanks for confirming my own line of thought.

I wouldn't be doing it full time myself straight away, I have two good businesses at present, I would be doing a fair bit, but the general day to day jobs would be the Mrs and one of my lads, checking, feeding, watering, collecting and washing eggs and such like.
I would be involved in all the building, maintenance side, catching, bitting, and such like, as well as obviously keeping an overall eye on everything, my main business virtually runs itself now, and I am finding I have more and more days to myself.
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#18 Rabid

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Posted 09 May 2016 - 07:57 pm

You'd need to get confirmed orders first before going all guns blazing mate. No point having a great rearing season with a field full of birds white no place for them too go. Once they start hitting 7/8 weeks they don't have eat the profits away.
Don't know what your thoughts on having laying stock but that cuts the cost also. Lengthens the season but defo saves money, especially if you can produce more eggs than you need and you can sell the eggs or trade them for day olds.


Part of my plans involve laying pens and my own birds kept year round, we used to have two very big pens, one to over winter them and one for layers, so yes, that would be the idea, I would think buying the eggs in wouldn't half cut your profit margins at the prices I seen them sold for !

Orders seem to keep cropping up, time for me to start chatting to farmers, shooters, keepers and see what leads and interest I can get
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#19 devon flighter

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Posted 09 May 2016 - 07:58 pm

 

 

  • a way of life rather than a job ! if your that way inclined try it ,no prizes for regrets later on if you dont try 

Defo that way inclined mate, but it's a big investment, not just a 'think I will give that a try this year' it's been on my mind to get back into for maybe the last ten years or so, but am now actually in a position to do it.

 

probably didnt come across just how i meant "TRY" you obviously know what your doing with the job and have a good idea what your aiming for ,as others has said there is some  money to be made but is this enough for you given your expectation on numbers you are thinking of rearing and investment required ? what i meant was  if you think you can get the market given the above risks on the investment of time and money then go for it, you only live once and you dont know whats round the corner and if this change will make you more happy and contented NOW then money is not always the be all and end all ! (if that makes more sense ? )



#20 Lab

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Posted 09 May 2016 - 08:01 pm

I gave it up 3 years ago now.....glad I'm away from it.
The huge rearing operations are killing it for the small game farms. Rearing in huge sheds with state of the art equipment is very hard to compete against.
I'd say you need to have orders lined up and doing it yourself (odd help at biting time and catching up) you'd need to look at 30-40 thousand to make it worth the time and effort. At a £1-1.50 profit it's not a bad seasons graft if it all goes well.
Apart from the weather the things most annoying is the rising cost of feed, gas and equipment yet the keepers don't want to fork out any more for poults. In the end it's just easier to go with the cheap option and if they have any disasters these huge companies just crates up another few thousand and send them up.
Atb if you go for it.
Oh and see when it's pishing down in the middle of the night and the rain wakes me up.....,I just laugh and go back to sleep now....

Thanks Lab.
Can I ask what was the decider for you packing it in ?

I would want orders before I even set an egg, thanks for confirming my own line of thought.

I wouldn't be doing it full time myself straight away, I have two good businesses at present, I would be doing a fair bit, but the general day to day jobs would be the Mrs and one of my lads, checking, feeding, watering, collecting and washing eggs and such like.
I would be involved in all the building, maintenance side, catching, bitting, and such like, as well as obviously keeping an overall eye on everything, my main business virtually runs itself now, and I am finding I have more and more days to myself.

Quite simply mate I was in partnership with my cousin and I felt every year he was doing less and less but still happy to take half the profits. Enough was enough and I packed it in.
I'd never had a holiday abroad in 10 years since I was 20, missed out on so much stuff with friends in the summer months because I was tied to pheasants.
All the stress is gone and life is a lot easier now.
Possibly as i get closer to retirement age of maybe think about doing a few thousand again. There is something satisfying about seeing all your hard work getting released all over the surrounding areas.
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#21 Rabid

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Posted 09 May 2016 - 08:04 pm

Also, technology has moved on a bit now. There's lots of relatively cheap and reliable monitoring systems. There's no excuse to be utterly tied to it like the old days.
My friend is just starting out with a bit of rearing and I keep telling him not to be afraid to make the system easy from the start!
At my old shoot, with just a few extra mannollas and some picca feeders we went from feeding the partridges twice a day every single day right through to twelve weeks; to feeding every other day once they were out of the rings. It made such a difference. My headkeeper said "I don't know why we didn't do that years ago" but it's easy to become entrenched.
Add to that a few temperature alarms, a rain sensor, thermostatically controlled heaters, in line medication, change over valves and some good attention to detail and you're catching up with the chicken boys who can look after 40,000 at the touch of a button single-handed in their sleep ;)


Not moved on that much then, we used change over valves, thermostat controlled heaters, auto cut in generators for the the incubators and hatchers, auto drinkers and such like 30 years ago lol.

That is exactly the system I want, days of carrying buckets of water and throwing blankets over incubators during power cuts went out with the ark.

#22 Crosshair

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Posted 09 May 2016 - 08:06 pm

Also, technology has moved on a bit now. There's lots of relatively cheap and reliable monitoring systems. There's no excuse to be utterly tied to it like the old days.
My friend is just starting out with a bit of rearing and I keep telling him not to be afraid to make the system easy from the start!
At my old shoot, with just a few extra mannollas and some picca feeders we went from feeding the partridges twice a day every single day right through to twelve weeks; to feeding every other day once they were out of the rings. It made such a difference. My headkeeper said "I don't know why we didn't do that years ago" but it's easy to become entrenched.
Add to that a few temperature alarms, a rain sensor, thermostatically controlled heaters, in line medication, change over valves and some good attention to detail and you're catching up with the chicken boys who can look after 40,000 at the touch of a button single-handed in their sleep ;)


Not moved on that much then, we used change over valves, thermostat controlled heaters, auto cut in generators for the the incubators and hatchers, auto drinkers and such like 30 years ago lol.
That is exactly the system I want, days of carrying buckets of water and throwing blankets over incubators during power cuts went out with the ark.

Ah well that's different :D
Lol! My head keeper was still using much of the same 30 year old equipment :D

Sounds like you just need the confidence to go for it. Good luck!
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#23 Rabid

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Posted 09 May 2016 - 08:09 pm

  • a way of life rather than a job ! if your that way inclined try it ,no prizes for regrets later on if you dont try 

Defo that way inclined mate, but it's a big investment, not just a 'think I will give that a try this year' it's been on my mind to get back into for maybe the last ten years or so, but am now actually in a position to do it.
probably didnt come across just how i meant "TRY" you obviously know what your doing with the job and have a good idea what your aiming for ,as others has said there is some  money to be made but is this enough for you given your expectation on numbers you are thinking of rearing and investment required ? what i meant was  if you think you can get the market given the above risks on the investment of time and money then go for it, you only live once and you dont know whats round the corner and if this change will make you more happy and contented NOW then money is not always the be all and end all ! (if that makes more sense ? )

Yep, that makes perfect sense, and I wasn't having a dig at your post, I got figures going round in my head that make your eyes water when I look at the numbers I am considering.

Walk before you can run springs to mind when it comes to investing money, I am lucky I am not potless, but I am by no means a rich kid that can throw money at anything I fancy

Your right, it's not all about money, I am not looking to get rich, I want to cover any investment, and make a living, something that can make headway, not be a liability,
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#24 Rabid

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Posted 09 May 2016 - 08:14 pm

I gave it up 3 years ago now.....glad I'm away from it.
The huge rearing operations are killing it for the small game farms. Rearing in huge sheds with state of the art equipment is very hard to compete against.
I'd say you need to have orders lined up and doing it yourself (odd help at biting time and catching up) you'd need to look at 30-40 thousand to make it worth the time and effort. At a £1-1.50 profit it's not a bad seasons graft if it all goes well.
Apart from the weather the things most annoying is the rising cost of feed, gas and equipment yet the keepers don't want to fork out any more for poults. In the end it's just easier to go with the cheap option and if they have any disasters these huge companies just crates up another few thousand and send them up.
Atb if you go for it.
Oh and see when it's pishing down in the middle of the night and the rain wakes me up.....,I just laugh and go back to sleep now....

Thanks Lab.
Can I ask what was the decider for you packing it in ?
I would want orders before I even set an egg, thanks for confirming my own line of thought.
I wouldn't be doing it full time myself straight away, I have two good businesses at present, I would be doing a fair bit, but the general day to day jobs would be the Mrs and one of my lads, checking, feeding, watering, collecting and washing eggs and such like.
I would be involved in all the building, maintenance side, catching, bitting, and such like, as well as obviously keeping an overall eye on everything, my main business virtually runs itself now, and I am finding I have more and more days to myself.

Quite simply mate I was in partnership with my cousin and I felt every year he was doing less and less but still happy to take half the profits. Enough was enough and I packed it in.
I'd never had a holiday abroad in 10 years since I was 20, missed out on so much stuff with friends in the summer months because I was tied to pheasants.
All the stress is gone and life is a lot easier now.
Possibly as i get closer to retirement age of maybe think about doing a few thousand again. There is something satisfying about seeing all your hard work getting released all over the surrounding areas.

Been there, done that, bought him out, and run the whole shebang myself now, had a good last ten years and he now moans he isn't involved anymore, he sees the new vans, new trucks, new diggers, new dumpers, it's just pound signs to him and he knows he screwed up, but I worked for it all, and reaping the rewards now.

I am starting later in life than sounds like you did mate, I done the nights out on the piss, mates and parties are long gone as is the wild life.

Holidays I can take or leave, after a few days I just want to get home again, I think the points you raise are very valid to most of us, just not sure I am out the same mood as most folk and certainly not the ones I grew up with.
Never more content than sitting down the field watching dawn break, and listening to the world come to life, it's the best part of the day for me.
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#25 Rabid

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Posted 09 May 2016 - 08:16 pm

Also, technology has moved on a bit now. There's lots of relatively cheap and reliable monitoring systems. There's no excuse to be utterly tied to it like the old days.
My friend is just starting out with a bit of rearing and I keep telling him not to be afraid to make the system easy from the start!
At my old shoot, with just a few extra mannollas and some picca feeders we went from feeding the partridges twice a day every single day right through to twelve weeks; to feeding every other day once they were out of the rings. It made such a difference. My headkeeper said "I don't know why we didn't do that years ago" but it's easy to become entrenched.
Add to that a few temperature alarms, a rain sensor, thermostatically controlled heaters, in line medication, change over valves and some good attention to detail and you're catching up with the chicken boys who can look after 40,000 at the touch of a button single-handed in their sleep ;)

Not moved on that much then, we used change over valves, thermostat controlled heaters, auto cut in generators for the the incubators and hatchers, auto drinkers and such like 30 years ago lol.
That is exactly the system I want, days of carrying buckets of water and throwing blankets over incubators during power cuts went out with the ark.
Ah well that's different :D
Lol! My head keeper was still using much of the same 30 year old equipment :D
Sounds like you just need the confidence to go for it. Good luck!
Thank you, yes it's a big step, and I need to feel confident in it before I give it my all.

Ps, not knocking old kit, two of my best incubators are late 60's early 70's 👍

#26 Lab

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    Wasnt the carling....it was the tennents and the scrumpy.honest

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Posted 09 May 2016 - 08:24 pm

I gave it up 3 years ago now.....glad I'm away from it.
The huge rearing operations are killing it for the small game farms. Rearing in huge sheds with state of the art equipment is very hard to compete against.
I'd say you need to have orders lined up and doing it yourself (odd help at biting time and catching up) you'd need to look at 30-40 thousand to make it worth the time and effort. At a £1-1.50 profit it's not a bad seasons graft if it all goes well.
Apart from the weather the things most annoying is the rising cost of feed, gas and equipment yet the keepers don't want to fork out any more for poults. In the end it's just easier to go with the cheap option and if they have any disasters these huge companies just crates up another few thousand and send them up.
Atb if you go for it.
Oh and see when it's pishing down in the middle of the night and the rain wakes me up.....,I just laugh and go back to sleep now....

Thanks Lab.
Can I ask what was the decider for you packing it in ?
I would want orders before I even set an egg, thanks for confirming my own line of thought.
I wouldn't be doing it full time myself straight away, I have two good businesses at present, I would be doing a fair bit, but the general day to day jobs would be the Mrs and one of my lads, checking, feeding, watering, collecting and washing eggs and such like.
I would be involved in all the building, maintenance side, catching, bitting, and such like, as well as obviously keeping an overall eye on everything, my main business virtually runs itself now, and I am finding I have more and more days to myself.
Quite simply mate I was in partnership with my cousin and I felt every year he was doing less and less but still happy to take half the profits. Enough was enough and I packed it in.
I'd never had a holiday abroad in 10 years since I was 20, missed out on so much stuff with friends in the summer months because I was tied to pheasants.
All the stress is gone and life is a lot easier now.
Possibly as i get closer to retirement age of maybe think about doing a few thousand again. There is something satisfying about seeing all your hard work getting released all over the surrounding areas.
Been there, done that, bought him out, and run the whole shebang myself now, had a good last ten years and he now moans he isn't involved anymore, he sees the new vans, new trucks, new diggers, new dumpers, it's just pound signs to him and he knows he screwed up, but I worked for it all, and reaping the rewards now.

I am starting later in life than sounds like you did mate, I done the nights out on the piss, mates and parties are long gone as is the wild life.

Holidays I can take or leave, after a few days I just want to get home again, I think the points you raise are very valid to most of us, just not sure I am out the same mood as most folk and certainly not the ones I grew up with.
Never more content than sitting down the field watching dawn break, and listening to the world come to life, it's the best part of the day for me.

I've grew up collecting eggs and feeding pheasants mate. My Grandad was part of a small shooting syndicate and he reared 400 birds for that shoot when he retired. Over you years 400 grew steadily until 15000 was the total.
As I said I was always there to help, learn what to do and it was obvious I was going to take over. My cousin got involved and it was good for a while and we got it up to around 30 thousand plus some pats'. But he has a different work ethic too me so it was always going to fail. Everyone can see that now as I've been rushed of my feet as I started my own fencing business and he has not worked a day in 3 years.
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#27 Rabid

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Posted 10 May 2016 - 12:02 am

I gave it up 3 years ago now.....glad I'm away from it.
The huge rearing operations are killing it for the small game farms. Rearing in huge sheds with state of the art equipment is very hard to compete against.
I'd say you need to have orders lined up and doing it yourself (odd help at biting time and catching up) you'd need to look at 30-40 thousand to make it worth the time and effort. At a £1-1.50 profit it's not a bad seasons graft if it all goes well.
Apart from the weather the things most annoying is the rising cost of feed, gas and equipment yet the keepers don't want to fork out any more for poults. In the end it's just easier to go with the cheap option and if they have any disasters these huge companies just crates up another few thousand and send them up.
Atb if you go for it.
Oh and see when it's pishing down in the middle of the night and the rain wakes me up.....,I just laugh and go back to sleep now....

Thanks Lab.
Can I ask what was the decider for you packing it in ?
I would want orders before I even set an egg, thanks for confirming my own line of thought.
I wouldn't be doing it full time myself straight away, I have two good businesses at present, I would be doing a fair bit, but the general day to day jobs would be the Mrs and one of my lads, checking, feeding, watering, collecting and washing eggs and such like.
I would be involved in all the building, maintenance side, catching, bitting, and such like, as well as obviously keeping an overall eye on everything, my main business virtually runs itself now, and I am finding I have more and more days to myself.
Quite simply mate I was in partnership with my cousin and I felt every year he was doing less and less but still happy to take half the profits. Enough was enough and I packed it in.
I'd never had a holiday abroad in 10 years since I was 20, missed out on so much stuff with friends in the summer months because I was tied to pheasants.
All the stress is gone and life is a lot easier now.
Possibly as i get closer to retirement age of maybe think about doing a few thousand again. There is something satisfying about seeing all your hard work getting released all over the surrounding areas.
Been there, done that, bought him out, and run the whole shebang myself now, had a good last ten years and he now moans he isn't involved anymore, he sees the new vans, new trucks, new diggers, new dumpers, it's just pound signs to him and he knows he screwed up, but I worked for it all, and reaping the rewards now.
I am starting later in life than sounds like you did mate, I done the nights out on the piss, mates and parties are long gone as is the wild life.
Holidays I can take or leave, after a few days I just want to get home again, I think the points you raise are very valid to most of us, just not sure I am out the same mood as most folk and certainly not the ones I grew up with.
Never more content than sitting down the field watching dawn break, and listening to the world come to life, it's the best part of the day for me.

I've grew up collecting eggs and feeding pheasants mate. My Grandad was part of a small shooting syndicate and he reared 400 birds for that shoot when he retired. Over you years 400 grew steadily until 15000 was the total.
As I said I was always there to help, learn what to do and it was obvious I was going to take over. My cousin got involved and it was good for a while and we got it up to around 30 thousand plus some pats'. But he has a different work ethic too me so it was always going to fail. Everyone can see that now as I've been rushed of my feet as I started my own fencing business and he has not worked a day in 3 years.

I also grew up doing very similar, couldn't even tell you how we started, think it was just a few phezzies for our farm, then word got round and folk started asking for them, I spent many happy days going round the traps collection pheasants and bringing them back to the wintering pens, collecting eggs, building covers in the laying pens, jet washing hatching trays every week, all for a quid here and there, I just enjoyed been out and doing it, then we moved and set up a bigger operation, can remember delivering chicks to some rough arsed keepers that scared the hell out of me at the time, one Bloke was huge, must have been 7 foot tall and wide as a house, looked like his face had been sand blasted, but I remember seeing how gentle he emptied the chicks out the box and he really loved them.
I grew up, went off and led my own life, women, drink etc etc, old man and brother packed the pheasants in, brother was never really interested, now 30 years later I find I want to get back into it again !
Workers will never go short mate, I am the same, my lazy bro only does a bit here and there as he feels like it, no real prospect, nothing to call his own, but his choice, he must live with having nowt, I am a believer you have to go out and get things in life, they rarely come a knocking !
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