So way back in January I ordered 35 pullets. The weekend they were to arrive we found our way to the feed store and bought 2 pullets. So then our shipment came, they sent 38. 40 chicks! Way back in January when I decided to order from the hatchery, my thought process was that I would order the minimum (somehow 25, turned into 35...oops) and sell off about half of them as POL pullets to people who don't want to brood babies, or to 4H kids for project birds. So now, I am pretty certain that the "free" bird that was added in is a boy as well as possibly one of the EE. So really that brings me back to 38 chicks (boys don't can't right???). Then we had one that just didn't eat or drink, and she had to be culled on day three and then on day 15 we had one with severe cross beak that was also culled. So that takes our count to 36. Yesterday we found ourselves at the feed store again, looking to possibly replace the two that had been culled. We left with 3 Blue Red Laced Wyandottes and two Pearl White Leghorns. Now l have one BLRW hen in my adult flock and I love her, she is pretty and a consistent layer. I saw them at the feed store and thought why not make that breed more prominent in my flock, so I picked 3. Now they were straight run, so I did my best at looking at feathers and I am hoping for all girls, but we know how that can work out! Then there was a tank with yellow chicks in it...you know, what your pre-chicken owning mind goes to when you think of Easter? Little solid yellow chicks, kind of like a yellow peep or the toy that you squeeze and it chirps. Well my daughter comments on how it is odd that we have all these chicks at home and none look like a "chick." She is 20, hardly a child anymore, but I could see the want in her eyes. "Jenn, do you want a yellow "Easter" chick?" We all know her reply. So she picked one. Well I hate just having one of any given breed in the flock...imagine how she would stand out in the brooder...the only yellow chick and then the only white toddler and so on. So we grabbed two. At this point my husband starts in about 43 chicks and isn't that enough? I just look at him and walk around the corner to see the what the kids are looking at. Bantam silkies, again straight run. My oldest son, who is 24 doesn't even live with us anymore, but happened to be with us was just in love with them. I was soooo tempted. But then I recalled why we don't have any bantams to begin with and I had to say no. It was hard, but I had to just take the box with 5 and walk away to the cash register. So in the truck on the way home my husband again brings up 43 chicks. I try to tell him that it is really on 41 (he is an electrical engineer and sees everything in numbers and black and white) he is not going for my "boys don't get a number and that the ones we are not keeping don't get a number" so they don't count in the final tally. That is when he turns to me and says "Why are you even kidding yourself, you will never be able to part with any of them, rooster or otherwise." And I believe he is right. Sure am glad I have 24 acres and two coops! So is this animal hoarding? Chicken math, and just what happens when you get into them, when they get under your skin and your life revolves around the birds? Or is it a "collection" of the most wonderful thing I have had in my life (other than my husband and kids)???? Why when we see those cute little fuzzy butts we can't resist. When we pull into the parking lot and see people walking out of the feed store with little boxes we get a little buzz and a strong desire to just "see" what the store got in this week? I know I am not the only one, I have witnessed several times on here...there are multiple threads about "chicken math." Perhaps we need to start some kind of support group for our unique "problem." Oh yeah....it already exixts, it is the BYC website!!!