Did i just make a really bad move? :(

Discussion in 'Chicken Breeders & Hatcheries' started by kaitlyn_rae2003, Mar 27, 2011.

  1. kaitlyn_rae2003

    kaitlyn_rae2003 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My hubby and I just ordered 25 chicks from mcmurray today. they wont be here until 4/25 but they had every single bird i wanted, so naturally i was eager and excited....Now im looking around here and seeing people are not always in love with the chickens they receive from mcmurray. Do any of you have cochins, partridge rocks, BLRW's, or brahmas from mcmurray? if so could you share your experience and maybe post a pic? Thank you so much!
     
  2. Illia

    Illia Crazy for Colors

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    Brahmas. . . . If you're looking for BIG birds with neat coloring, they don't have them. I ordered 10 Brahmas from them, only 3 made it, and they're 5 lb hens. Our smallest non-hatchery breeds dwarf them, truly sad. Brahma hens should weigh at least 8 lbs and tower all the breeds on my farm. [​IMG] Also, their color is extremely smutty and off-putting. Oh, and one was clearly not purebred, as she had a single comb, a different voice, a different shade of egg, completely different body, and cleaner legs (less feathering)



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    You have to keep in mind, no big commercial hatchery has good quality birds that meet with what the breed should look like, weigh, or match in size. Their temperament is often the same (except in games) and their general appearance from a far distance is the same, and that's it.

    Edited to add: Here's a photo showing some of my Light Sussex (should be same color as Brahma, but clearly the Brahmas are sooty looking in comparison) and a Brahma from Murray McMurray on the left. Sussex are actually supposed to be much smaller [​IMG] - These huge girls here are from non-hatchery stock.

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    So if you're just looking for pet hens, you made the right move. If you're looking for those particular breeds and colors and expect them to look as said, you've simply learned that hatcheries aren't the best choice. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2011
  3. Mmmaddie13

    Mmmaddie13 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    All of my chickens have come from there (except the one I hatched, and the 18 in the bator that are due on Wednesday), honestly not by my choice, but because that's where my feed store gets them from.

    My blue Cochin rooster is THE BEST chicken alive. He is the sweetest biggest old man, I love him. I've had a light Brahma rooster as well, he was about as big as my Cochin, and I have two little light brahmas now, bought as pullets, one looks like it's going to be a cockerel.

    I don't think they're very good at sexing, because I've had many "pullets" turn out as roosters - more than you would think, but maybe that's just my luck.

    They are nice birds though, you'll enjoy them. [​IMG]

    ETA: and as Illia said, the color quality isn't perfect in the light brahmas, though I did have a very handsome buff brahma bantam that came from them.
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2011
  4. pdsavage

    pdsavage Sussex Monarch

    Mar 27, 2008
    NW,Missouri
    If your just looking for a colerfull flock and eggs then your good to go.If your planning on showing these birds later then you need to buy from a breeder who chickens meet the APA standards or darn close.
     
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2011
  5. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

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    Quote:Very true. There isn't a lot of difference between the hatcheries, and for meat or eggs or a pretty backyard, it doesn't matter anyway. You might want to get into breeding later, but a hatchery flock is a great place to start.
     
  6. kaitlyn_rae2003

    kaitlyn_rae2003 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 8, 2010
    Laconia NH
    Thanks for the input! I know Ill end up loving them regardless! Anyone want to chime in on what to expect from "shipped chicks"? Are they usually in ok condition? If there are dead ones, or ones who never really thrive, would Mcmurray replace or refund you?
     
  7. schellie69

    schellie69 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 8, 2009
    Kansas
    I have not ordered from the hatchery but I would make sure to add a little sugar to the water and you will need to show them how to drink by dipping their beaks in the water. I have heard if some die the hatchery will replace them. I have birds that are from the feed store they are a great starter flock when I get my farm I will be buying hatching eggs from breeders only to start my breeding flocks. I might use some hatchery stock to start and improve from there. I love my girls and they are great egg layers.
     
  8. featherz

    featherz Veggie Chick

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    My hatchery birds are smaller and are not as colorful BUT they lay eggs properly and act like normal chickens. I can definitely tell the difference between those and the chickens I hatched myself, but the hatchery birds are just fine. It's funny, I thought my hatchery birds were huge and fat until I started hatching my own and realized how much bigger the new ones were getting!!!

    Bottom line is, I am sure you will be happy with your new babies!
     
  9. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

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    I'm not familiar with McMurray's policies. They should have their policy on their web page. I suspect they either refund, credit, or replace, but I don't have that experience.

    Are shipped chickens in good shape? Usually. The hatcheries would not stay in business if they were usually not in good shape. All hatcheries are not the same, but the major ones do a pretty good for what they can control. With some hatcheries shipping 100,000 chicks a week at high season with humans a big part of the shipping process, mistakes can obviously happen. Once they ship them, however, they lose all control over what happens. Usually the Post Office does a good job on their end, but you are depending on individuals with different amounts of knowledge. So I'll say usually, but not always.
     
  10. flowerchild59

    flowerchild59 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I order from MM on average of every 5 years or so for the past 25 years and I have always been happy with their birds, albeit, my spoiled rotton, hatchery qualtiy birds. I don't get my panties in a bind over standards and all of that mess. I don't show birds or really breed them. I have a hen sit on a clutch of mutt eggs and I spoil them rotton too.
    I like my eggs fresh from the proverial farm, and my assorted brown egg layer girls have given me plenty thru the years.
    Now if you want me to get picky about about something, ask me about my hostas. That is something I am truly passionate about.
     

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