Naively, I ordered chicks early in January from Ideal to be shipped towards the end of February. I assumed that hatcheries know best when to ship chicks safely. But as reports came in to BYC of dead chicks, I became more & more concerned about the ship date. When Ideal called early in February to ask if it was alright to move the ship date back to mid-March, I happily agreed. My husband & I went out of town over this past weekend, so made arrangements with neighbors to look in on our chickens & pick up the mail. On Saturday, I got an email from my neighbor. There was a note with in our mailbox which said the chicks were dead "on delivery" to the post office on Saturday morning; our carrier left the box of chicks on our porch. I was very upset & angry. How on earth could Ideal have shipped the chicks a full month early & not bothered to tell me?? I emailed customer support that evening & got a reply the next day, from Missy. She apologized for the error. When the new date was sent to shipping, it was mistakenly entered as 2/18, not 3/18. Missy was polite & sympathetic on the phone--no quibbling about the charge nor did she ask for any paperwork. After thinking about it for 2 days, I decided not to reorder from Ideal, not till they have a better system in place to notify customers & track shipments. Missy told me that tracking, through the USPS, is in progress but will take time to fully implement. While I know that backyard chicken enthusiasts, like so many on BYC, are not the bread & butter of hatcheries, surely hatcheries can't afford to reship chicks and/or refund orders. Perhaps if everyone who orders from a hatchery would stress how important it is to know when chicks have shipped, hatcheries would get their collective rears in gear & do so. It might not have mattered years ago, not when the USPS took the shipment of live animals more seriously & before they outsourced much of their shipping, but it does, now.