1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

...like a box of chocolates...

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Buckhowdy, Dec 25, 2014.

  1. Buckhowdy

    Buckhowdy Chillin' With My Peeps

    71
    12
    53
    Sep 14, 2014
    I placed a small order with Ideal Poultry for a Christmas eve delivery. I picked them up from the Post Office today. I'm happy with the order, but there is this one thing that puzzles me.

    "If your order consists of a very small number of items (less than the equivalent of a quarter of a box), there may be male chicks placed in the box for warmth or comfort during shipping. The breed of chicks included varies from order to order and unfortunately we are unable to identify the breed."

    I ordered a dozen straight run Barred Rocks. There were 23 birds in the box! Some of the chicks are yellow, some are grey with splashes of white, some look like Barred Rock hens. I am delighted with the order and it reminded me of the line from the movie Forest Gump "...life is just like a box of chocolates, you never know what you are going to get."
     
  2. ChookRanger

    ChookRanger Chillin' With My Peeps

    246
    18
    68
    Jun 25, 2014
    Ha! sounds like they emptied the chicken bin into your box. Nice little Christmas bonus.
     
  3. jtn42248

    jtn42248 Overrun With Chickens

    "Packing Peanuts", Ideal does that so that they can sell by a set price minimum instead of a required (often larger) minimum number of chicks. Most likely you have at least 10 little boys plus any others if you ordered straight run. Prepare yourself for how you will get rid of them or, like I did with mine, set up a bachelor pen.
     
  4. 123RedBeard

    123RedBeard Chillin' With My Peeps

    532
    57
    136
    Oct 20, 2014
    Arizona
    Sounds like Easter lunch is growing ... Yummy!

    As long as you want to take the time and feed to grow them out ... AND you have space ... Or ... You can figure which ones are the extra's and twist their necks now.

    If they are not dual-purpose or meat breeds ... They may not be worth feeding ... ;)
     
  5. Buckhowdy

    Buckhowdy Chillin' With My Peeps

    71
    12
    53
    Sep 14, 2014
    We discussed getting a Rooster. My wife grew up with lots of "Pollos". She said that we need two. So I thought I'll just get a minimum order of straight run Barred Rocks. We would probably get at least two Cockerels and add some Layers to the flock. I was aware that they may add Cockerels to the order. I'd like to see what the Cockerels turn out to be before I cull, re-home, or continue to raise them. I'm not ready to cull them yet - they're too cute to boot just now. My wife might be able to do it, but I think she sees a future dinner in every one of the extra Cockerels. This is not a bad problem to have if you wanted a Rooster or two. Do they become big enough to eat before they start crowing and fighting?
     
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2014
  6. Areolyn

    Areolyn Chillin' With My Peeps

    306
    16
    98
    Apr 11, 2014
    De Leon, Texas
    I loooove roosters, but the barred rocks I got from Ideal got a little mean to the rest of the chicks. But for some reason they loved me and would perch on me when I opened the pen(my profile pic shows that lol). At 5 months you can get a little bit of meat off of them, but I recommend at least 7-9 months for optimum meat.
     
  7. jtn42248

    jtn42248 Overrun With Chickens

    It really depends on the breed which, at this point, you don't know. If they are game bird breeds they are more likely to fight one another at an early age than say a Dominique. However, I have had luck keeping cockerels in a pen by themselves as soon as I know that is what they are. As they grow you can typically see certain behavior patterns develop and may be able to decide which one(s) you might want to keep and which not. Keep in mind though that males will always display some level of aggression and only you can determine what is acceptable and what is not. I had two that I kept with my hens (2 roosters and 22 hens). One was Blue Andalusian ( a truly beautiful bird) the other a Dominique. All was fine until on day the Andalusian decided that his one goal in life was to kill the Dominique. The Andalusian is now gone and the Dom, once he was healed, is our only rooster with the hens. He is crippled and very shy but he will ruffle his feathers at me now and then to let me know he is the master of his flock. As for crowing, it usually starts as they mature. However, I have 4 Bantam roosters that began to crow, or at least try to, at 6 weeks.

    Good luck to you.
     
  8. Folly's place

    Folly's place Overrun With Chickens

    7,251
    1,547
    356
    Sep 13, 2011
    southern Michigan
    Mystery chicks are fun! You can spend time figuring out the breeds by cross referencing the hatchery choices with chick pictures; try feathersite. The extra cockrels will be tasty, at least. I found some interesting breed choices by observing the mystery birds that arrived here. mary
     
  9. 123RedBeard

    123RedBeard Chillin' With My Peeps

    532
    57
    136
    Oct 20, 2014
    Arizona
    If they are bantam extra cockerels ... They will never get big ... But you can still eat them!
     
  10. Buckhowdy

    Buckhowdy Chillin' With My Peeps

    71
    12
    53
    Sep 14, 2014
    Yes this order has been fun. I wish I could order more right away, but space and county codes dictate moderation. This has added a new dimension to flock management for me - meat birds!
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by