Good starter flock?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Rillion, Jun 21, 2009.

  1. Rillion

    Rillion Songster

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    Hey all,

    I'm new to the chicken thing in general and am trying to learn all I can before starting my own (very small) flock. Videos, books, web sites....pouring over all of them. And I have tentatively reached a conclusion about what I want to get-- the following day-old chicks:

    1 Easter Egg pullet (maybe 2)
    1 Plymouth Rock (Barred Rock) pullet
    1 Buff Orpington pullet
    1 Silver Sebright pullet

    The first three because they're not only nice looking but seem to be reliable egg layers, and the Sebright because I'd like to have a pretty pet chicken as well.

    Now, the following issue exists: I live in Texas (Dallas/Ft. Worth area) and so the chickens will need to be able to deal with hot weather, though their coop will be in a shady area of the backyard. Also, there is a farm near me which raises EE, Barred Rocks, and Buff Orpingtons but not Sebrights. I could theoretically go there and just pick up the chicks myself. Ideal sells Sebrights, but they're out of stock until this fall. Would it be a dumb decision for me to order from MyPetChicken (which is in CT) so as to get my Sebright in addition to the other chicks, or should I give up on that and get the chickens from the farm closer to me and get a Silkie or something instead?

    Also, do you see any personality clashes in the mix I chose? I'm kind of worried about the bigger chicks picking on the single bantam.
     
  2. cafarmgirl

    cafarmgirl Crowing

    I think if you really want the sebright then you should order them so you can get them all together as day olds rather then try to add the sebright later. I have a single sebright that was raised with my seven standards and we have no problems at all with her being picked on but I don't know how it would work to try to add one in later to a group of older birds.

    BTW, your group is EXACTLY what I have except I have one more Barred Rock and three Rhode Island Red's in the mix and they all get along just fine.

    Good luck and have fun, I'm sure you'll be as hopelessly addicted as the rest of us here in no time at all! [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2009
  3. Bluemoon420

    Bluemoon420 The Rooster Queen

    From my experience so far with my golden sebrights, they like being in pairs. My male and Female do not like being apart, and he is VERY protective of her. He does not even LOOK at another female bird, only her. So, if you get the sebright, try to get a male, female pair. They'll be happy.

    Bluemoon
     
  4. Rillion

    Rillion Songster

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    Quote:I'm pretty sure that I don't want to have any male birds. Do you think another female Sebright would do?
     
  5. I would agree - definitely don't try to add the smallest hen to the flock later, and it usually isn't ever a great idea to add a single hen on her own to an established flock in any case. I would always add newbies to a flock in pairs rather than singly... it can help prevent a situation where one hen takes an almighty battering if there are two newbies to take half the bullying each! If possible, I would always try to add hens who are bigger than the existing girls too, so they have a fighting chance.

    Is there any way at all that you could get them all together? She stands a chance if she's with them from Day 1, but being the smallest and being put in last might just mean that she gets bullied mercilessly.

    I had a 20 week old bluebelle (UK marans-based hybrid) and a 17 week old buff orpington, and we tried to bring in a single 16 week old warren (RIR/light sussex hybrid) who was a good third smaller than the BO and still noticably smaller than the bluebelle, and we gave up in the end. She was bullied mercilessly by both bigger girls for a week and it showed no signs of improvement so we eventually took her back.

    As for personality clashes with the others, no, I don't see any special problems. The buff will end up the biggest, but will probably be the most docile too, so that should even out any differences in size. They should get along fine.
     
  6. Cloverleaf Farm

    Cloverleaf Farm Bearded Birds are Best

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    Just as an FYI, I got my bantam pair from a friend who had them with 4 EE's, all were purchased together as day old chicks, and she gave them to me because the bantam pullet was constantly picked on, her roo tried his best to protect her, but got picked on too...
    Good luck!
     
  7. Rillion

    Rillion Songster

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    Is there any way at all that you could get them all together? She stands a chance if she's with them from Day 1, but being the smallest and being put in last might just mean that she gets bullied mercilessly.

    Yes, I could get them all together if I ordered them as a group from MPC-- it would cost more, but that's not a deal-breaker. I'm just trying to figure out if it would be extravagant of me to go that way in terms of both cost and potential risk to the chicks' health when I could get all of the chicks except the Sebright if I bought locally.

    I'm predicting I will get quite attached to these chicks. [​IMG]

    cafarmgirl, thanks for the feedback! I will definitely make sure to get the bantam right at the start along with the other birds and not introduce it later.​
     
  8. cybercat

    cybercat Songster

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    Rillion I would check MPC first call them. They get there stock from Meyers so you might want to call them also. Right now it is real hard to get anything you might have to wait till next year. I do know some have placed order with MPC only to get it delayed or a partial order then the rest later. So be forwarned on that happening. I think your best bet would be Ideal as everyone is sold out on alot of breeds for the year, bantams exspecially.
     
  9. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast

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    Get them all together... and get a couple of Seabrights, they're beautiful.... and a white leghorn never hurts in the heat; nice, big, white eggs.
     
  10. Bluemoon420

    Bluemoon420 The Rooster Queen

    If you can get two female sebrights that would work too [​IMG] They are beautiful birds. I just happened to get one male, one female, and noticed how the interacted with each other differently then my other birds did. They get along fine with the bigger birds as long as no one messes with his girl. They tend to stick to themselves.

    I also didn't mean get them different ages either. If you're ordering them all at once, you'll be fine. I have different ages, and had no problems when they were put together. That doesn't mean someone else won't have problems. I just got lucky.

    Bluemoon
     

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