Chicken buyers beware !

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by diditotaro, Sep 2, 2014.

  1. diditotaro

    diditotaro Out Of The Brooder

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    Sorry not meaning to gripe but I am astounded at the lack of integrity and honesty amongst Penna chicken sellers. I went through Craiglist to start my flock as I didn't want 1 day old chickens ( I have a large dog that would have ate thru basement door to get to the babies ).

    I traveled 2.5 hrs each way to get my first 6- arrange for $10 a bird ( 4-6 months old ) ended up with 8 - 4 of which turned out to be roosters unknown to me for 30 days....then I traveled 1.5 hrs each way to a different backyard woman who was looking to lighten flock. Her birds were def older but for the $80 i spent for 4 birds I got 2 defects and 2 egg layers

    I didn't know the defective birds until a few days later. One has a bent leg and she doesnt lay at all and the 2nd bird has some lump on her back and she doesn't lay either...supposedly 1yr old I asked for my $ back and still no email or phone reply

    went to 3rd "reputable" chicken farm - about 1.5 hrs away again- to get 4 laying hens( since out of all the birds I have I get 2 measly eggs a day but am feeding 14 birds!) I told the woman i wanted to pick out my own hens this time. I paid her $15 a hen and she picked them - unseen to me and shoved them in the go box. I expressed frustration at not being able to select my own and was told tough..she was busy and life is what it is. I get home and 2 of the 4 are way old looking...totally spent and damaged looking feathers all pulled in weird places..damaged plumes on top of head etc....also 2 flew over fence the minute I opened the box and flew away for they are gone... Also requested refund- no call back

    I am just soooo mad and sooo disappointed. $215.00 on chickens - $50 amonth in food to feed them - $200 in gas - $1500 in coop building and i am now the proud gather of 3 eggs a day! WHOOOOO!

    What is wrong with peopel that they are so dishonest - pardon my surprise- everyone here is so responsive and good hearted people that i guess I mistook all chicken people to be good people...I am just really disillusioned..really.... and would never recomend anyone else enter this endeavor....

    thanks for listening
    Donna
     
  2. ivan3

    ivan3 spurredon Premium Member

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    The price (though expensive in time/money/layers that don't) could have represented an even more costly lesson, i.e., badly diseased chooks.

    Just some observations on your experience, thus far.

    I went through Craiglist to start my flock as I didn't want 1 day old chickens ( I have a large dog that would have ate thru basement door to get to the babies ).

    I only use this service to buy/sell laptops and I ALWAYS meet the buyer/seller in the lobby of a local bank (thanks for the security cams, BOA!).

    I told the woman i wanted to pick out my own hens this time. I paid her $15 a hen and she picked them - unseen to me and shoved them in the go box. I expressed frustration at not being able to select my own and was told tough..she was busy and life is what it is.

    Have had to eat the `sunk cost' (time/fuel), before, myself (not chickens). If my BS detector is triggered for any reason, I walk away and consider myself lucky (got off `cheap').

    In your situation maybe the experience would best be thought of as part of the learning curve ($ to construct dog proof brooder/pullets from hatchery? Versus $time/fuel/shoddy product).

    What is wrong with peopel that they are so dishonest - pardon my surprise- everyone here is so responsive and good hearted people that i guess I mistook all chicken people to be good people...I am just really disillusioned..really.... and would never recomend anyone else enter this endeavor....

    Am sorry BYC has painted such a `rosy' picture but, one has to understand, BYC members represent only a small, but gowing, section of the canvas. It is one thing to cut a hole in a cardboard box and call it a chicken coop (and yes, I've met a few folks who've done just that), it is entirely another to want to share (BYC members) one's experiences/observations/opinions FREELY with others about the best coop, etc (to a fine point and beyond, on occasion) (Advanced Search function is also good). We are, in the main, a pretty particular flock.

    Glad to have you on board and don't give up. At worst, at present, you have several meals (stewing hens) available. There are many `chicken acquisition artists who've posted/post whose brains you can pick. You're way up the learning curve at this point! (delve into the predator/pest subforum to observe the, too often, nearly vertical shape the curve can take).

    Hang in there!
     
  3. BethanyS

    BethanyS Chillin' With My Peeps

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    sorry you have had a hard time.Its hard for the average Joe to tell the sex of young bird.Even hatchery sexed chicks end up with a few mix ups.I'm sure some people are dishonest but unless someone stalks the next box it would be hard to know if their hens were laying.Given the cost and time involved I wouldn't expect to find prime laying hens for $15-20 anyway. I agree you may have ended up with some costly" stew birds"

    Your coop is the biggest expence and you can still get good birds.Your best bet is to buy from a hatchery.McMurry sells 4week old chicks( at that age they could go straight outside with a bit of cozy accumulations) or hatcherys sell started pullets for a hefty price but as you stated cost of raising is high.You'll get what you pay for.Best of luck
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2014
  4. dheltzel

    dheltzel Overrun With Chickens

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    The low price is an indication that they might not care too much about repeat business, I would not sell a laying hen for less than $30, even then I think we'd be losing money. Some people will sell for less if they are trying to clear out space or other reasons they don't want the hens for laying, but if they don't want them, are you sure they are a good deal? When searching CL for bargains you really do need to know a lot about what you are buying, and that's unfortunate. It is easy to get a bad deal even if the seller is reputable.

    I bought 9 chicks last October from a very well respected farm a few hours away. 6 were Ameracaunas and every one of those was a cockerel. The chances of that happening randomly is less than 3%, but it did happen and it was random. Then I lost the only male Welsummer from the remaining trio of chicks and had to go buy another one. I was in over $100 and it was over 6 months before I got any eggs at all. But I'm still happy because the 2 hens that did survive have produced dozens of eggs and I now have a flock of more than 20 Welsummers from that one purchase. Hindsight being what it is, I could have acquired them for less and not had all the extra roos, but those are the risks you take with chickens.

    Plenty of people have paid hundreds of dollars for a ready to lay flock and had them devastated by predators. I've lost birds from truly stupid (in hindsight) decisions as well as just plain bad luck. My advice is to cultivate friendships with people near you that hang out on this site. I would not cheat a buyer under any conditions, but I'm extra sure that my friends here get a great deal. Where are you located? You should join your state thread and ask for recommendations there.
     
  5. Folly's place

    Folly's place Overrun With Chickens

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    Raising your own chicks is a great way to start, and safer from a disease standpoint. It won't get you egglayers this winter, though. Ethical people with healthy chickens are out there, but separating them from the others can be hard. I hope you haven't brought ugly diseases to your farm; IMO that would be the worst outcome here. Adult hens will be very stressed by ANY change in their environment, and may take a while to lay eggs again, even if everything is okay otherwise. I personally only get baby chicks from safe sources and raise my own. Mary
     
  6. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Chicken Obsessed

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    I agree with Mary. It's a huge risk to bring adult poultry in from ANY other flock. Unfortunately, when you buy birds from someone else's flock, you're going to get the birds that they WANT TO GET RID OF. That is, unless they have been blessed with an excellent hatch with a wonderful percentage of good pullets. Some flock reductions may be due to over stocking, or some birds are not up to breeding standards. But, a reputable seller will KNOW the age of the bird he's selling to you, will be able to tell if the bird is in laying condition, and will allow you to examine the bird before it goes into the box. I am so sorry your experience has been disappointing so far. Hang in there. For my own standards, I'll not bring anything onto my property other than day old chicks or hatching eggs.
     
  7. Folly's place

    Folly's place Overrun With Chickens

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    On the same subject; Only get birds properly vaccinated for Marek's disease in the future. If you already have it, with these random source birds, it will be on your farm forever. Mary
     
  8. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Overrun With Chickens

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    I think you need to look closer to home. Contact your county extension office, find a local poultry club. Do a search on here by your state, but get birds closer to home.

    Mrs K
     
  9. Cindy in PA

    Cindy in PA Overrun With Chickens

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    If by Penna CL sellers you mean Pennsylvania, depending on where you are, you could have bought ready to lay pullets from Moyer's in Quakertown for $9 each at 17 weeks old. I got some 10 years ago in the middle of November & they started laying the next week. They only sell red sex linked chickens, but they are fine birds to start your flock.
     
    1 person likes this.
  10. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    There are dishonest people everywhere, doesn't matter what they are selling or what state they live in.
    You have to be careful and maybe slow down a bit.....you made some bad decisions, but you will survive and be wiser for it....experience can a be dear teacher.
     

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