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Hatching Eggs VS Day Old Chicks

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Lynzi777, Mar 26, 2012.

  1. Lynzi777

    Lynzi777 Overrun With Chickens

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    If someone were to get into the hobby of raising chickens would you suggest they start by hatching eggs or raising chicks from a day or more old? I'm going to be doing this with our 6 yr old son. And I worry about ordering eggs - how many will actually hatch? But I've also read that when ordering day old chicks thru online, some don't make the trip. We only want to start out raising between 4-6. If we decide to add more it may not be till the following year. And I realize when ordering eggs it's usually by the hald dozen or more - in which case if I ordered a dozen I would find homes for the "extra chicks". Whats the best advice for starting out?
     
  2. mstricer

    mstricer Overrun With Chickens

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    Buy day old chicks. Learn from them and then you will get the hatching bug which will be fun for you and your son. This time of the year you can order small amounts. Like if you wanted a flock of 5, and you wanted a rooster. Then order from a hatchery that sells small sexed batches. Meyer hatchery in Ohio does. Good Luck and have fun.
    Michele
     
  3. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    Your son would enjoy watching the hatch -- but incubators aren't cheap and they can be tricky to operate. Shipping either eggs or chicks can be problematic, too, though. Ideally, call around your area and see who will have chicks when -- feed stores, Tractor Supply, etc. -- whoever sells feed will at least know who has chicks in the spring. Might cost just a little more than ordering them, but the shipping losses have already been absorbed. Around here, feed store chicks run maybe $2 to $4 each. Also, if you order, or buy feed store chicks, you can buy them already sexed -- which means you should get mostly females; sexing is about 90% accurate. Obviously, if you hatch, your chances of females are only 50%.
     
  4. Lynzi777

    Lynzi777 Overrun With Chickens

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    My problem is if I want just say 3 silkies and 3 buff orpingtons - or 2 silkies/4bo's I cant find any place that have both available to ship around the same time. So now I'm risking shipping 3 chicks one week and 3 chicks another week. So do I order more of each in case they don't make it? Or hope that my local store has at least the BOs and when I go to order the Silkies order 4 hoping at least 2-3 make it thru shipping? Decisions Decisions! LOL
     
  5. SkyeSchazade

    SkyeSchazade Out Of The Brooder

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    Your probably best off calling around to local feed and farm supply stores. See what the have in stock, or when they will have the breeds your looking for. Then you and your son get the fun of going to the store and picking out the individual chicks yourself! Good Luck!
     
  6. Lynzi777

    Lynzi777 Overrun With Chickens

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    Our local TSC has chicks but only until April 13th. So I think I'm going to look into ordering a batch of day old chicks from one of the sponsoring websites on here. I'll start with the silkies since I'm not having an easy time finding them - all the websites seem to be "Limited Available". Would you say it would be smart to put in an order soon for say an order date around the end of June so by the time I'm ready to do start raising them, they'll be there. Rather than getting to the end of June and getting the websites and seeing their next ship date is in August? Or even later!
     
  7. SkyeSchazade

    SkyeSchazade Out Of The Brooder

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    Sounds like that should work out well if they let you do pre-orders (ive never mail ordered before). Have you looked for any local silkie breeders in your area? That might be a good option too.
     
  8. felidaet

    felidaet Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I agree with checking or local feed stores and breeders. You can also check craigslist but I would use caution from buying chicks off craigslist. Unfortunately there are a lot of crooks an shady people doing business on the site. I am fortunate that there are MANY feed stores in my local area. I don't have to deal with shipping direct from hatcheries. You can get almost any breed you are looking for if you check with enough places and are a little flexible on the date you get the chicks.
     
  9. SkyeSchazade

    SkyeSchazade Out Of The Brooder

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    We are quite spoiled where we are!
     
  10. NattiFan

    NattiFan Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Don't be afraid to look on Craigslist in your region. You maybe surprised to find half way local people that hatch their own chicks and sell them. You may find what you want there too.
     

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