Buying eggs online

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by duckmom17, Apr 28, 2017.

  1. duckmom17

    duckmom17 Just Hatched

    Apr 28, 2017
    East central Illinois
    Tips for buying eggs online.
    Bests sites to use?
    When to buy? Are there better days on the week then others?
    Starting the incubation process once they arrive?
  2. eggbert420

    eggbert420 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 15, 2017
    Expect low hatch rates. Let them sit pointy side down 24 hours when they arrive. Wait 3 days before turning. Good luck
  3. cmfarm

    cmfarm Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 3, 2010
    Elgin, TX
    If you can avoid shipping eggs I would, especially if you are not a skilled hatcher. They can have pretty dismal hatch rates, and often times nothing at all will hatch.
    1 person likes this.
  4. duckmom17

    duckmom17 Just Hatched

    Apr 28, 2017
    East central Illinois
    I've been reading some pretty bad stories about shipping eggs and was curious. I may just have to ask around locally to see if anyone has some eggs I can try hatching. Thanks
  5. AllynTal

    AllynTal Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 22, 2014
    Mississippi Gulf Coast
    I have had good hatches with shipped eggs -- up to 95%. I buy eggs only from known, reputable sources -- usually only from breeders active in the breed's national poultry club. A good hatch starts with a healthy flock which you are more likely to find where the person is dedicated to the breed and not some person running a 'puppy mill' for poultry and are only in it for the money. Salient point is, you want to find sources who care about the breed, not sources that just care about the sale. I would recommend finding the poultry club of the breed you're interested in and then talking with the people in the club to find who is selling fertilized eggs. Avoid eBay and other mass seller outlets, since you don't know what those people are doing or whether they're just in it for the sale. Also, a reputable breeder won't ship eggs late in the week so as to avoid having the shipment sit in the post office all weekend.
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2017
    1 person likes this.
  6. mandelyn

    mandelyn Overrun With Chickens

    Aug 30, 2009
    Mt Repose, OH
    My Coop
    I've had great and terrible luck with shipped eggs. Through the process I've learned to research the seller and try to investigate how they're caring for their flock. I do the same research for local sellers too. A penned up inbred flock fed nothing but scratch grains or layer feed won't make good hatching eggs. They need to be genetically diverse and fed a good breeder diet to make sure that the structure of the egg is sound, and that the yolk has all the needed nutrients to make a healthy chick.

    Someone looking to make money on the cheap won't use only the best birds, and they'll feed them as cheaply as they can. Hygiene is also important, since bacterial infections can be passed into the egg. Age of the eggs matter, no more than 10 days old. A lot of trust is needed for these transactions! You have to trust that the seller is using good breeding stock that's genetically diverse, that they're feeding and housing them appropriately, and that they are sending you honestly fresh eggs. You're trusting that the picture they are using is really their birds!

    I bought 3 dozen hatching eggs of Wheaten Marans at a swap 3 hours away. Drove them home, let them rest, set them. 1 hatched. 1 Wheaten pullet. She was a cool bird. 18 had made it to lockdown. It was very disappointing. It was towards the end of the day on a warm day, might have had something to do with it. Might have been other causes. When I opened the eggs up to see what had happened, many were deformed. From crossbeak to enlarged heads. The same thing happened with B/B/Splash Marans, bought 24 eggs online. 2 hatched, both pullets. The rest made it to the end and quit, found the same issues in the eggs. One of the hens had an inverted comb, not sure what causes that. The other just fell over dead at 2 years old, both laid poorly. The incubation process was the same methods I've always used with great success.

    So now I have babies growing out from Greenfire Farms, Marans included. They're by far the healthiest batch I've raised. It's nice starting from babies, a known number of them, without waiting the 21 days to see what happens. The cost of course was much higher. I do like how hatching eggs provides a way to get obscure birds without the huge expense of shipping live chicks in.

    After playing with this hobby for 16 years... I only buy hatching eggs from a known source if it's a breed that's just not available in my area in any part of the year, or if the breed is super expensive. For some types it's almost the only way to get them. Otherwise I buy the live bird, who's quality I can see. I don't buy from hatcheries as a rule, I pick a breed, collect from several sellers, and then make my own after that point since now I can keep roosters. Before when we didn't have the room for roosters I would get the rare eggs because the roosters I couldn't keep then had value. Common breeds you can barely give away the boys, at least in our area.

    With most of the breeds you can find them within a 4 hour driving range if you stalk the local ads or look up breeders. You just have to be patient. Fall is the best time to look, as people sell down for the winter and make their breeding decisions for the following Spring. June is another good time, before molt causes the birds to look bad. Spring shopping will be mostly chicks, that may or may not be sexed. Eggs will definitely not be sexed, and you might be rooster heavy or hen heavy, or an exact 50% split. Twice with duck eggs I got all girls. LOL

    Be wary of the weather patterns when you're thinking on buying eggs or even live birds... too hot or too cold could be problematic. Also check NPIP status and the state rules... many people are selling illegally with the changes that have happened the last couple of years.

    Generally though, I've had good luck more often than not, especially after I started paying attention to the details. You can often tell a lot just by the way an ad is put together. For example, a pure breed listing with pictures from a mixed flock. Uuumm... how old is that picture? Because it takes some 3 weeks after separation of a breeding flock to be able to guarantee purity...
    1 person likes this.

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