chicks or already laying hens?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by momofthree, Jan 11, 2010.

  1. momofthree

    momofthree Chillin' With My Peeps

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    This is my second question of the day [​IMG] But we are starting our flock in a month or so and i can't decide if i want to start my flock off with already laying hens or almost ready to lay pullets, or baby chicks and have to suffer the wait! i am a pretty impatient kinda gal and so i am thinking i should start off with some ready to lay pullets and a few already laying hens.... not a whole bunch at once because dh and i want to make sure everything is predator proof and we can keep them alive [​IMG] then, after that, we will start building up our flock.

    any suggestions, ideas, your own experiences?
     
  2. Countrywife

    Countrywife Corrupted by a Redneck

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    If you can get some grown girls at a good price, I would give it a shot. Do be sure to quarantine if you are getting them different places though. Full growns take less effort than babies, but babies get attached and you get more variety. How bout a couple big ones now, and babies in the spring?
     
  3. Barred Babies

    Barred Babies Red Roof Farms

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    I started out with 3 laying hens and a rooster!! Didn't have to pay for them though a friend gave them to me. But then I bought 15 pullets. And I just have a successful integration. If your impatient then I'd say go for a few that are already laying so it will satisfy you while your raising your babies!! I really enjoyed raising the babies!! I can catch, hold and pet them... The other 4 is a nightmare [​IMG] when I need to tend something on them!!

    Hope all goes well and have fun!! [​IMG]

    Missi
     
  4. Uzuri

    Uzuri Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 25, 2009
    I started with chicks, and having done so, would never do it any other way XD

    Be aware: chicks are addictive. Once they grow, you immediately want more.
     
  5. rstampa

    rstampa Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If I knew then what I know now, I would buy pullets or mature hens. Saves a lot of time and money. I'm like you. I am to impatient to wait for 4 or 5 months before I get a single egg.
    Go for the ready to lay hens.
     
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2010
  6. AZKat

    AZKat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Getting chicks is fun, and you get to see them go through all the cute little stages. It also spreads out the start up cost a bit, depending on your budget it might be easier to spend a little bit of money at a time on feed, rather than dropping a bunch of cash all at once to get pullets. If you live in an area where point of lay pullets sell for a good price, you may also be able to get some of your expenses back by buying extra chicks and then selling them when they get to point of lay.
     
  7. Countrywife

    Countrywife Corrupted by a Redneck

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    do be aware, in general it can take some standard breeds up to 6 months to lay that first egg. I didn't actually know that when I started, and it suprised me.
     
  8. HEChicken

    HEChicken Overrun With Chickens

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    It depends on how soon you want eggs! If you wait until Spring and then get chicks, they won't be mature enough to lay until Fall, and then laying may be a little sporadic if you live in an area where the days are short and/or it gets really cold. Your profile doesn't say where you are, but some of the hatcheries are shipping now, so if you were to order chicks now, they would be laying by mid-summer. However if you are in a cold climate, you'll have to have them indoors for awhile before you'll be able to integrate them outside. My sister bought point of lay pullets and was rewarded by getting eggs shortly after she acquired them. I got chicks and although it has been fun watching them grow up and mature (just got the first egg a couple of weeks ago), it also means more expense on food with nothing to show for it for awhile. So it kind of depends on how patient or impatient you are, and to some extent, where you are located.
     
  9. cybercat

    cybercat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Alot depends IF you can get POL or layers near where you are at. They are not that easy to find and when you do they go fast. Price wise they are much more expensive than chicks. There are pros and cons to both sides. If you are after a certain breed most likly you will have to order chicks. If you do not care what breed you get then you have a better chance local. BUT know this many local birds will have mites or lice and lord knows what else. If you start with hatchery chicks you have clean healthy chicks not picking up someone elses problems or disease.
     
  10. toejam

    toejam Never enough birds

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    Get chicks because it is fun to watch them grow plus if you decide to breed you will know how to take care of the babies. Here are some reasons to get babies and adults.


    Chicks
    fun to watch grow
    if you order from a hatchery you can get more for less(good or bad)
    you have more time to build a coop even though I think you shood at least start on it before you get the chickens.
    There are more but I am not thinking well sorry

    Adult Chickens
    Get benefited earlier
    MUST have coop done before you get them
    less options unless you like popular breeds(gerenerally speaking)
    greater chance of disease unless you get from a good breeder.

    Chickens are very fun. I started in 2006 and right now I have around 35 chickens, 3 peafowl, 1 duck,2 pheasants, and 4 guineas.
     

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