Breed? Buying chicks Monday

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by kpgoldstar, Oct 3, 2013.

  1. kpgoldstar

    kpgoldstar Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 25, 2013
    West Coast of Arizona
    Hi there,

    I will be buying my very first chicks at a feed store next week. We wanted RIR's originally, we live in Arizona and they are supposed to be a heat tolerant bird. Unfortunately the only place to get chicks within driving distance is 3 hours away and they are not getting RIR's this week. They are getting BO's and Wyandottes, plus BSL's which I have no desire to own. They still have some RIR's but the only ones are already 2 weeks old. They didn't have a shipment last week because they were doing inventory. They get them on Fridays and they are 3 days old. I am planning to pick mine up on Monday the 7th so the RIR's will be 3 weeks old by then. I was wanting to get them very young so we could handle them regularly and they would get accustomed to being held. We want friendly personable birds.

    What do you all think of BO's? I know they have a very sweet nature but are prone to getting broody. They are also on the large side and my coop will be just big enough for 4 girls. I also know that larger birds have a harder time in the heat, but BO's are supposed to be somewhat heat hardy, and they have a fluffier build so their feathers are not so close to their body??(something like that! LOL) I didn't ask which type of Wyandottes they are expecting. I would imagine it would be a variety of colors. I like both the silver and gold laced. How are they as layers? What would you think of getting 2 BO's and 2 of the dottes? Will the BO's bully the smaller gals? Thoughts on getting RIR's that are already 3 weeks old? But then I wouldn't have the pleasure of cuddling tiny chicks!!

    Thanks! Kristine
     
  2. enola

    enola Overrun With Chickens

    Three week old babies will tame down very quickly. RIR hens that I have owned in the past have been every bit as friendly as all of my other hens. RIR roosters are the ones that turn into real stinkers.
     
  3. Janet Pesaturo

    Janet Pesaturo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Wyandottes are one of my favorites: good layers, beautiful, calm. They are not (in general) larger than BO's, and any bullying will have to do with the individual personalities and their living situation. I haven't had BO's, but friends that do have them, say they are more likely to go broody than other dual purpose birds. Both breeds tend to be calm.

    I don't have a lot of experience with RIR's, but my impression this far is that they are more aggressive and nervous than other dual purpose breeds. I don't like them, but I think of the one's you are considering, they would be the most heat tolerant and might be right for your situation. And they lay extremely well.

    I do think if you want them really tame, it's best to start with day old chicks, but 3 weeks is not that old, and if you're diligent about handling them often, you should be able to tame them.

    Good luck!
     
  4. barkinghills

    barkinghills Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 17, 2011
    Hi,

    We have 2 RIR's and they are just fine. Calm, dependable layers, non-broody, and don't cause any trouble in the flock.

    I love my BO's also. They are the most prone to heat distress of my flock (and I have most of the common and some uncommon breeds here in Oregon).

    Another favorite of mine is Black Austrolorps. Great all-around breed, great layers, pretty, friendly, peaceful, quiet.

    I have tried several Wyandottes over the last few years and have given them all away, mostly for being intractable broody. They are not a favorite of mine and I doubt I will get any more in the future.

    I wouldn't think BO's need a lot more coop space than the other breeds you mention, if the space is adequate to begin with. You should plan for 4 SF/bird in the coop plus I think 10 SF/bird in the run. BO's are a little bigger but not significantly bigger than RIR's or Wyandottes.

    Good luck, curious to hear what you end up with.
     
  5. kpgoldstar

    kpgoldstar Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 25, 2013
    West Coast of Arizona
    Thank you everyone for your responses. Well, as luck turned out we got to the feed store and someone came in earlier in the day and bought every single BO. I actually think it may have been a special order and they messed up by not ordering additional chicks. The 3 week old RIR's were already gone. They had about 4 Plymouth Rocks that were a couple weeks old and about 20 silver wyandottes that were 3 days. I was sooooo disappointed. Our son is celebrating his 35th birthday so we are down in the Phoenix area for the weekend and planned to stop by the feed store on Friday, see what they had and buy the chicks on our way home Monday morning. That plan went completely out the window.

    Luckily they have another location that I didn't think carried live chicks. We got the manager to call that store and guess what?? They have RIR's which is what we wanted from the very beginning due to their heat tolerance and that is what I raised as a pre-teen in 4-H. They only get their shipments in about every 3 weeks, and these ones arrived last Friday at 3 days old. I called the store myself and reserved 4 of the RIR chicks for Monday. They will be almost 2 weeks old when I get them but with the amount of handling I am planning we should be able to tame them to our liking. I really, really wanted teeny, tiny chicks!! I did a buttload of research on the BO's since that's what I thought I would be getting. It's OK though, I will get the breed I wanted from the very beginning!!

    I will take pics when I get them and post here!

    Kristine
     
  6. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    I hope you enjoy your new flock when you get them!
     
  7. kpgoldstar

    kpgoldstar Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 25, 2013
    West Coast of Arizona
    I got them!! YAY! Super excited. 4 RIR's just about 2 weeks old today. They are absolutely adorable!! I asked for bands when we were there but they don't sell them. I was like Oh Well, maybe we can tell them apart. Oh yes certainly!! They all have different coloring especially on their heads so they already have nicknames until we can name them based on personality. We brought a box with construction sand with us and placed them in there for the 3 hour ride home. We asked about food or water but were told they would be fine.

    It was apparent that they were thirsty and hungry because the incessant picking started just a few minutes down the road. Some were even drawing blood and I was in a PANIC! One was particularly aggressive and she was on the small side. I was hoping I had someone to call to make sure this was normal behavior. I picked them up a couple at a time and let them ride on my lap. They got so cozy and comfy with me. I would go about 20 minutes then trade them out for the other two in the box. The whole way home I did this. They were already showing so much character! We had one that is the biggest and she could fly up on the edge of the box. Another was just obsessed with traveling up my arm and getting to my shoulder so she could pick on my hair.

    We survived the trip, got them into their brooder. They drank and ate like there was no tomorrow! It is 90 in my garage so I opted not to have a brooder light in there due to their age. They are happy and content, bellies full, roosting together and hardly a peep out of them.
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    Riding on my lap on the way home
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    Home and they have figured out how to eat!
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    One of my girls who insisted on riding my arm the whole way home!
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    Happy healthy, CUTE!!!!

    Kristine
     
  8. aafairchild

    aafairchild Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 24, 2012
    Adorable. I love my RIRs. I have a runt that will come and sit on my feed, then chirp to be petted. I stroke her 2 or 3 times and off she goes. Good luck with your new brood.

    Alice
     
  9. barkinghills

    barkinghills Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 17, 2011
    Adorable! I love baby Rhodes. Our oldest hen (as featured in my photo) is a RIR, and she is a very good hen.

    Have fun with your babies!
     

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