When I first ordered chickens I ordered 20 standard run from a breeder, half wyandotte's and half orpingtons. In retrospect I'm glad it didn't work out- her incubator broke mid hatch, and she felt terrible so she gave me seven random chickens- two buff orps, one second gen lemon cuckoo orp, one wyandotte (which I'm pretty sure is actually a mutt), one white silkie, one red frizzle, and one black frizzle. If anything I learned from that flock that I liked variety. But I wanted more chickens, so I ordered twenty more- four EE's, six Barred Rocks, and ten Cornish Cross (with no idea that keeping meat chickens is a whole different game- thankfully I learn fast!). Only they sent me six each of EE's and Barred Rocks and two barred rocks died (one random chick death and one taken by a hawk out of the run), so I ended up with six EE's and four barred rocks... which is fine because I LOVE the EE's. So once I processed my meaties I had seventeen, not far from my original number of 20... Except that the day after I dropped them off to get processed, I happened to go into the Fleet Farm store and they had a few different types of chicks for 50% off. So I came home with six more chicks, gold star layer hybrids, who were my other favorites up until recently when they started INSISTING on leaving my (mostly fenced) yard no matter what they had to do to get out.
That was last year. This year, oh my goodness, it has nearly gotten out of hand, and I don't even own an incubator (yet!). I still have my original flock of 23, minus a culled rooster and a predator loss for 21. Then I got 14 Buckeyes from a local breeder. Then 12 more Gold Stars (who hopefully aren't so adventurous!) a week later. I built a really simple A frame summer coop for the big birds and moved all the younger birds into the original coop. THEN I got 25 more meaties (a mix of Rosambro and Red Rangers from MT-DI), who are currently residing in my ghetto 10x10 PVC tractor.
THEN I had two hens go broody... actually, they went broody while in the old coop, so they stayed in there, along with the silkie. The first hen to go broody, one of the EE's, hatched one of her three eggs, then nothing happened, and I knew the other hen was sitting on bad eggs (she switched nests), so I found that necessitated a trip to the feed store for chicks. I meant to just grab three astrolorps, but I got there before the day's chick shipment came in (yes, I have a schedule of what comes on what days...). However, the had one week old EE's from last week's batch, which is what I ACTUALLY wanted anyway. Even more exciting, they had five one week old salmon faverolles, which besides Buckeyes was a breed I am interested in actually breeding. So of course I had to get both, and came home with eight chicks. I meant to give a few to the frizzle (the other broody hen) and the rest to the EE, but the frizzle rejected them (and got booted from her nest by me!) so the EE got all (and has done a great job). And As I was reaching under her to pull out the unhatched egg I discovered a brand new still wet hatched chick, more than 48 hours after the first chick hatched, for a grand total of 10 chicks for the lucky new mom! So until Sunday, when I take my meaties to get processed, I have... I've lost count... 25+20 (original flock minus another I had to cull last week)+25(Buckeyes and Gold Stars minus a Buckeye rooster I gave away to a friend)+10. A nice, even 80! But soon to be 55... well, no soon to be 53, because the roosters from the old flock are going to the processor's too before they start fighting with the Buckeye roosters, since I let them all free range together.