This spring I want to try some new breeds of chickens, to decide which birds I like best for breeding up my homestead flock. (Last year I ordered one each: NH, BPR, BA, BO fro the feed store (Ideal)). I've narrowed the birds I want to buy this year, something like: Dark Cornish, WLR Cornish, Java, Ameraucana, Silver Grey Dorking, Buckeye, and La Fleche. If I buy all these birds from a hatchery like Privett or Ideal, I can raise them all at the same time - very straightforward. It's a simple way to sample a variety of breeds. However, I'm interested in heritage conservation. I'd like to have heritage birds, and spend my dollars to promote care and artistry by breeders who are working hard at the conservation. The thing is, if I get 5 chicks each from 5 breeders, I doubt I can coordinate getting them all within a couple of weeks of each other. I'll have 5 age classes of chicks going this spring ... won't that create a logistical nightmare? How did you get started in breed sampling? Would you share your experience and advice?