Indio Gigante’s require extra work compared to your normal backyard flock but once you have a foundation, everything should be smooth sailing after.
I’ll start with the only cons of this breed (in my personal opinion); “Perna Bamba” aka “wobbly legs”. Perna Bamba is when the bird's upper body weight has become too heavy for their legs to support causing them to stop walking. There are many stages to this and the signs are visible from day 1. When caught early, your chance of the bird recovering is high. And avoiding this is easy!
As any large breed animal, this breed will grow at a substantial rate. Making sure their proper nutrition is aligned with their growth will require extra supplementation. We start our birds on calcium as early as 6-8 weeks. We also give them a weekly “rooster booster” of a whole bunch of vitamins, amino acids, minerals, oats, alfalfa….. etc. (I have a list I will find and post it here). The chicks thrive off of this.
Now the good part!!!!
This breed has a very chill personality and gets along great with other breeds. The hens are great layers and don’t go broody often. The roosters will get tall! 40 plus inches tall. Feeders should be gradually elevated. This helps with the bird's posture. Roosting sticks are also needed to prevent chest abscesses. They are low roosters and some honestly chose to stay on the ground.
During the grow-out stages, bedding management is important to prevent crooked toes. They naturally have somewhat crooked toes because their feet are ginormous. We keep this breed on a low protein diet. 16% or lower. They love greens (collard green, kale, cabbage), fruits, and mealworms.
They require an adequate area to roam/free-range daily. This helps them keep lean and strong. All of our birds are vaccinated for Mareks and we also vaccinate with New Castle. We keep our Indio Gigante’s on medicated feed until 8 weeks.
From our experience, this is all there is to owning Indio Gigantes. Many people have posted their routine and experience with them on our facebook group page called "Raising Indio Gigante in the United States".