Cackle Hatchery Experience?

Discussion in 'Chicken Breeders & Hatcheries' started by SE Missouri Guy, Jan 8, 2015.

  1. SE Missouri Guy

    SE Missouri Guy Hatching

    Jan 8, 2015
    SE Missouri
    First off let me say that I have always received healthy chicks that are the correct species. Also they have always been on time and helpful if I have questions. They have sent so many extra birds, that the few chicks that have died out of probably 800-900 chicks, I am still probably ahead. But here is my question to y'all. Whenever I have ordered Breeds that only come as Straight Run (except for Cornish Cross) which can't live past 12 weeks. I have received an extraordinarily high number of cocks to pullets. Last year I ordered 15 rare and 15 top hats both specials that only come straight run and I received 32 bird but only 4 are hens. Two years before that I ordered 50 Cackle's Red Broilers straight run & again I received 4 extra birds but out of 54 chicks (all survived) I had 2 hens. The first straight run assortment I ordered 5-6 Years ago was the 25 assorted purebreed Bantams. I received 26 chicks & my best ratio of males to females with 5 hens. Out of 112 straight run birds I have received 11 females. I am not accusing them of any wrong doing just wanting to see If I am just that unlucky. On a side note out of the 100+ pullets I have ordered from Cackle I have never received any roosters. I look forward to hearing from you, this is my first post on this site and am enjoying reading the other threads.
  2. Bill Matthews

    Bill Matthews Songster

    Apr 3, 2013
    ......... ordered from Cackle. ........ Whenever I have ordered Breeds that only come as Straight Run (except for Cornish Cross) which can't live past 12 weeks. I have received an extraordinarily high number of cocks to pullets. Last year I ordered 15 rare and 15 top hats both specials that only come straight run and I received 32 bird but only 4 are hens.

    Strange situation indeed....I agree that Cackle does a really good job and has a good product for the type chickens they sell....The breakdown of male to female in the Top Hat specials is absolutely weird since they sell only straight run in these breeds.......Now their Rare Breed Special is a different story since they seem to include some breeds that are also sold sexed......Since these breeds are rare, do they really NOT sex them or are they sexing them and keeping the females to increase their flock numbers?......Years ago, I annually ordered the Rare Breed Special from McMurray and always got about 75% males.....This was because they sexed most of their rare breeds and sold the surplus pullets as a separate special called Ornamental and Rare or something like that......However, they didn't claim that the Rare Breed Special was straight run...The other instances you cite are equally weird......These people have been in business for many decades and the whole family are really nice, upfront people...I can't imagine them being dishonest...Flukes, mistakes, or both combined.....Enjoyed your post....Thanks for sharing....
  3. thePluckyChick

    thePluckyChick In the Brooder

    Mar 17, 2014
    I think I got all your girls --- I ordered their cochins and got 6 cocks and 4 pullets.

    I've had awesome luck with Cackle for far -- the best of the hatcheries.
  4. BantamFan4Life

    BantamFan4Life LOOK WHAT YOU MADE ME DO.

    Jun 15, 2012
    I really like Cackle. It was really easy to order and I received all the breeds I requested. I was told that they were "95%" show quality by someone, but several of my birds had improper plumage color in areas. The others, however, did well at our fair.
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2015
  5. costello

    costello Songster

    Mar 24, 2013
    I ordered from Cackle Hatchery last year and half the chicks died. I'll never order from them again. In fact, it was my one and only experience with mail order chicks, so I may never go that route again.
  6. TeaChick

    TeaChick Crowing

    May 5, 2013
    Deep South
    My Coop
    Your problem is unlikely to be either Cackle or mail order chicks. Many ppl order chicks shipped through the post office and many ppl order from Cackle. I hatched chicks of my own, ordered some through the mail (not from Cackle), and bought chicks from my local feed store. I lost half my chicks last year (2014). It was due to fowl pox and coccidiosis. Losing half your chicks is more likely due to illness or buying a sensitive breed than any hatchery or the post office.

    If you want to ensure that you don't lose chicks in the mail, buy from your local feed store; they take the hit on chicks that don't make it and the costs of that and shipping are spread out over all ppl who buy chicks there (plus, they probably get a better price for ordering so many chicks).

    May I recommend feeding medicated chick starter/grower and possibly adding Corid to your chicks' water for as a preventative measure to ensure you don't lose anymore. I fed medicated feed and didn't lose any chicks, I fed unmedicated feed and lost half my chicks, I added Corid to the water and only lost about a third of my chicks, I fed medicated feed and I'm back to not losing chicks.

    All the best to you! =)
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2015
    2 people like this.
  7. maddog3355

    maddog3355 In the Brooder

    Apr 14, 2014
    A buddy of mine ordered 40 straight run from cackle hatchery this past spring and only 14 of them where roosters so I think it's just blind luck sometimes. I've never heard anything bad about them. And have heard of them for years.
  8. LipsChicks

    LipsChicks Chirping

    Dec 31, 2014
    North Dakota
    I sure would give Cackle another try. They are by far the best hatchery I've found. I get a few chicks from TSC or a store like Runnings but when I want specific breeds I order from Cackle. I lost a couple out of a big batch and they gave me credit for more chicks right away.
  9. LipsChicks

    LipsChicks Chirping

    Dec 31, 2014
    North Dakota
    The people and chicks at Cackle are awesome! I think you had some really strange luck. I ordered silver seabrights and got all pullets and Phoenix that turned out to be 4 out of 5 roosters which was great for me!! I'd keep trying.
  10. Eliaria

    Eliaria In the Brooder

    Jun 3, 2012
    Martinsville, IN
    I have always had terrible, terrible luck with Cackle. I don't recommend them to anyone unless they don't mind a large amount of mess-ups by chance. I find people who order their random specials or in bulk get the goods and some of us get shafted who do the small special orders. Although they've never failed on gender with me, I've ordered from them on 3 separate occasions from my feed store in the past 8 or 9 years. They failed to ship me the right breeds almost every time and then lied about what they sent even though they were specifically marked. I'm sorry, but an australorp is not a cuckoo marans. A red chick (new hampshire, RIR, etc) is not a buff orpington. The feed store has since told me they would be looking for another hatchery that doesn't give them and their customers so much grief. Specifically after the last 2 years.

    Outside of that, when I would just pick out of the feed store bin (still Cackle, just not special ordered - and not always the same feed store) they would die within days... only those. I've only had cackle chicks die on me in the brooder minus my own loss at home hatching and the chick that was trampled by my duckling last year. The ones that do survive the brooder (only 6 have ever made it out of the who knows how many I've bought) end up as hawk magnets (lol, it's weird how all the hawks go after the few living cackle chicks/pullets I had- this is clearly chance and nothing else, just funny. It's like fate is telling me to quite wasting my time with them). Those were my fault. Ironcially, all my cackle flock were slowly picked off out. Not a single feather was touched from my other girls from other places. I will say they did give me very healthy ducks minus the one drake. I didn't expect any decently marked welshies (the girl looks good but the boy is a mess and has always had oddly weak legs).

    I find the more you buy, the better your luck is going by other cackle reviews on here. You may get great service and good birds, or you may end up like me and others who are talked to like we're stupid, terrible customer service (which the trend is they're great until you're calling about sick or incorrect birds and then they become hard to deal with), overall treated rudely, and birds dropping like flies and who have serious issues that are consistent with inherited issues. I don't recommend them, but I say buyer beware. It could go either way, I have just been incredibly unlucky with them and don't wish to test my luck there anymore.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: