How do hatcherys do it?


10 Years
May 21, 2009
New york
Well on all the shows and stuff you see the chicks going though the hatching process. They start with the eggs and so on.

Now where do they get the eggs?

They must have differnt areas for all differnt breeds of birds...

And how many birds of one kind do you think they have to fill all the orders?
I would guess they just contract out to smaller farms for eggs. Averaging 50 hens for each color of each breed.

Every time I order any I get a ship date over 21 days away so I assume every evening they take there orders an order eggs from there egg supplier.
Oh I wouldn't say they contract with SMALL farms. In general suppliers furnish hundreds at a time. Those INCUBATORS can hold 25,000 eggs in some cases.

You cannot forget all those hatches of simply meat birds and mixed layers that go out, all the feed stores that want huge numbers. It's quite rare that a hatchery would even bother with a batch as small as 50, that's why they often have large assortment sales or excess of one group or another. Those huge incubators run best with giant groups of eggs, then excess must be sold.

Only turkeys and geese are run small batch. And small custom orders. The giant wad of egg/chick orders - they do in thousands. Unless it is some company like MPC, who might do groups smaller than 50, but I'm not entirely certain they hatch, I think they SHIP someone elses work. But the big guys? Nope those are some virulently huge bators, that COST to run and they don't do small often.
I picked up chicks from Meyers. The hatchery sits on a dairy farm. The hatchery building is not terribly big and is divided into 3 sections: secure hatching area, store, and drive-thru feed pickup. The lady at the counter told me they drive a 100-mile radius to pick up fertile eggs from breeders on individual farms. The eggs are hatched there at the Meyers hatchery and timed to all pip around the same time. It was a clean, orderly looking process. I don't know what they do with extra roos. I didn't see an incinerator or such thing.

I do like Meyers and their system.
Chicks are technically chicken - as in chicken in pet food.
No,they don't just waste the boys. But price per pound is low for them. So they are always a loss.

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