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Hatchery? Breed reccomendations?

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by TubbyChicken, Jul 30, 2008.

  1. TubbyChicken

    TubbyChicken Songster

    Jul 30, 2008
    I've read so many awful things about hatchery chickens but I don't see any alternatives. Are there breeders out there? Where would I find them?

    Are some Hatcheries better than others? I'm interested in ordering from My Pet Chicken. Any good or bad stories to share?

    I'm looking for close to 10 hens known for good laying.

    I love the look of the Barred Rocks and the Wyandottes. How are they with laying? I've read that they can be broody.

    We plan on getting several Rhode Island Reds because they are so highly recommended for their egg production.

    I'd really like to get some heritage breeds and I plan on getting a couple silkies for comic relief (although I'm having a hard time finding them)...

    Any other thoughts or suggestions?

  2. Opa

    Opa Opa-wan Chickenobi

    May 11, 2008
    Howell Michigan
    If egg production is your primary consideration you should take a hard look at black australorps. They are a very calm, easy to care for chicken that free ranges well, endures cold and heat well, not very broody. They are a very pretty black chicken that has a green iridescent green sheen to their feathers. I had extremely good service from Estes Hatchery. Their a small family owned business that was a pleasure to deal with.
  3. Barred rocks are great layers.
  4. ChickenToes

    ChickenToes Songster

    May 14, 2008
    NE Wisconsin
    I would say most people on this board have hatchery chickens. As far as I know, there's nothing 'wrong' with them, they just aren't show stock. Usually you can find a breeder or a small hatchery in your area.

    I order from Murray McMurray and have always been extremely happy with them. I have heard a lot of good things about My Pet Chicken, the only bad thing I've heard about them is that shipping is expensive. A lot of people on the board love Ideal Poultry.
  5. lauralou

    lauralou Songster

    Dec 10, 2007
    Central Virginia
    There is nothing wrong with hatchery chickens for the backyard flock. However, if you plan to show your chickens, you should seek out a quality breeder. There are many here on BYC.

    I'm crazy about my hatchery chickens! They conform to the breed standard reasonably well, are very healthy, and some are laying eggs at 19 weeks. I got mine from Ideal Poultry. I ordered 10 pullets, requested that they NOT send males for warmth, and only paid $35.00 for them, including shipping and insurance. That's a pretty good deal!

    I don't have any of the breeds you mentioned, so I can't comment on their egglaying abilities. Also, I don't have any bantams, so I don't know how well they get along with large fowl. Maybe someone else can give some insight on how well Silkies can live with larger birds like Rhode Island Reds...

    Good luck with your chickens, whatever you decide to do. [​IMG]
  6. firem3

    firem3 Songster

    Sep 15, 2007
    Odenville Alabama
    i use mt healthy with great results, as far as breeds my mutts that i got from a cousin lay great.
  7. rachel

    rachel Songster

    Apr 11, 2007
    Phoenix, AZ
    I think if you're looking for less than 25 birds, mypetchicken is the only place that will send them to you. I have put in an order for some additional birds from them that will be shipped to me in a month or so. They have been very pleasant to deal with so far, I had a couple questions and she was very knowledgeable and happy to answer them for me. I chose them not because of a small batch, but because they carried some rare breeds I was looking for. (They have a lot more stock in the spring and early summer, towards the fall they run out and your choices are slimmer).
    Rhode Island Reds are great layers, but don't be afraid to get some of the other birds too. For example, my Easter Egger lays beautiful sage green eggs and she usually lays one less per week than the RIR.

  8. KLH2010

    KLH2010 Songster

    Apr 20, 2008
    I don't think Ideal has a 25 chick minimum...I'm pretty sure it's a $25 limit instead.
  9. tiki244

    tiki244 Flock Mistress

    Jan 1, 2008
    barred rocks and rirs lay well, so do Wyandottes but probably not quite as frequently, and a little smaller egg.

    None of these breeds goes broody excessively and you can break them of it easy enough.

    I think Ideal still has some silkies left, but not sure.

    They have a $25 minimum

    Cackle still ships, so does mcmurray
  10. Southerngirl

    Southerngirl Songster

    Mar 25, 2008
    Central Arkansas
    We have ordered from both Cackle and McMurray hatchery and each time received healthy chicks. If this is your first time to raise chickens and you mainly want eggs the Barred Rocks and Australorps are excellent. They both lay very well and are easy to tame. For comic relief in your yard try some Buff laced polish or Crevecoeurs. Good luck ![​IMG]

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