How do I start a Chicken Business?

~cochinlover~

Chirping
Jul 24, 2018
100
186
86
Oregon
I want to start breeding chickens. I don't know how to start my business though. I did a bunch of research and what some advice from my chicken people's. As of right now the breeds I am going to have are buff silkies, and then I'm going to work on a designer breed (cream legbar hens and a pure ayam cemani roo). But, what breeds would sell better than buff silkies? I want an idea of what would make the most money. Anyway thanks!
 
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EggSighted4Life

Crossing the Road
5 Years
Apr 9, 2016
14,342
19,901
832
California's Redwood Coast
Hi there. :frow

When starting out a hobby, you don't have to go full on business mode... Start small and see what your market is. Honestly, it's a HARD way to make any money... breaking even or covering your cost is good goal.

Silkies are a breed I can sell ALL day long and have a waiting list. But they are also very much a labor of love... and despite them being my best seller... I no longer keep them. Quality is key, people who are willing to pay my price aren't looking for hatchery quality birds. And I personally like bearded Silkies MUCH more than non... though both standards are accepted for showing. Chicks sold for $10 each straight run. I'm not NPIP or I would charge a little more even. And that was fro my standard black, blue, and splash. The Lavender and cuckoo went for $15 each... I JUST discovered chocolate... and those can be sex linked (as well as cuckoo). Buff as far as I know is a difficult color to keep nice... and for me, just meh... but you gotta do what YOU like. :cool:

Your Ayam and CCL will put out sex linked chicks... But they will be barnyard mixes. I think you could sell more pure CCL for higher value... what I discovered is people don't care about buying "rare" or mix breeds... but they love to buy popular breeds. Working on your own breed is a LOT of time consuming work trying to get it to breed true.

I would just stick with all Silkies and expand my colors.. not mixing them.

Beyond that... breeds that sell well (for me) are French black and blue copper Marans. Lavender Orpington seem popular... for me they were to slow growing and heavy bodied for their production to make me want to keep them. Maybe Lavender Ameraucana... Gotta do with what YOU love. ;)

Sourland gave sound advice!

Good luck. :fl
 

123RedBeard

Crowing
6 Years
Oct 20, 2014
1,423
1,848
336
Arizona
In the trucking business we have a saying ... "To make a million dollars, start out with two million dollars" ;)

If your planning on breeding ... you need to start with good stock, AND good infrastructure ... unless you want to chance "oopies" mutts ... you need quality secure coops and runs to keep everybody where they belong ...

Get a Standard of Perfection book, read it, study it ... the first 1/3 is very important! Read it again! ;)

How much experience do you have now with raising/keeping chickens?
 

EggSighted4Life

Crossing the Road
5 Years
Apr 9, 2016
14,342
19,901
832
California's Redwood Coast
Thank you guys so so much for the advice! I live in Oregon and how would silkied americanas do?
I'm 20 miles south of the border on the coast. :wee Most people drove 90 minutes each way minimum to get here, never squabbled over the price I asked, and many repeat customers. I forgot to mention the paint Silkies also went for $15 as chicks.

To get Silkied Ameraucana... you would have to breed them to a Silkie feathered bird which will give all hard feathered offspring and then breed the offspring back to each other should give you a percentage of Silkie feathered offspring which you would then have to start breeding back toward your standard of perfection for the Ameraucana breed. I keep bantam Ameraucana in wheaten right now, hopefully Lav soon. I considered crossing the Silkies to the Ams to get bantam OE... But I like the Ameraucana a lot better. Picking another breed that is Silkie but closer to Am in standard would mean less work down the road... for example if you can find one with the same amount of toes and skin color or egg color.. At least Silkies and Am are both bearded.. but feathered legs seem to dominate. And body shape is important. Lots of fun things to think about and contemplate! :D
 

MANNA-PRO

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