New flock in July - Chicks or Pullets?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by magine48, May 16, 2016.

  1. magine48

    magine48 Just Hatched

    May 16, 2016
    New Jersey
    Hello everyone!

    We've been battling our township for a few months now but success appears to be on the horizon. We expect the township to approve backyard hens starting in July!

    My question is this: Do you think I should start with chicks at that time, or jump straight to pullets. My concern with chicks is that they would reach egg-laying age approximately right at the start of winter. (I'm in NJ).

    Any and all help would be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance!
  2. ChickenLover200

    ChickenLover200 Overrun With Chickens

    May 10, 2013
    I'll be in the barn!
    That is all in opinion, but if it counts, I bought chicks in July and they started laying in the winter fine.
  3. DallasAndPecky

    DallasAndPecky New Egg

    May 9, 2016
    If you're getting them solely for eggs I will throw it out there that mine hardly laid any eggs (Michigan) in the winter. I do not have a heat lamp though as I have a very small coop, but my friend has a lamp and says he gets eggs through the winter.
  4. magine48

    magine48 Just Hatched

    May 16, 2016
    New Jersey
    I would be getting them solely for egg production, so the reduced or non-existent eggs in the winter concerns me. I've read mixed opinions on artificial light in the winter (some say its inhumane and wont allow the birds to rest and recuperate).
  5. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Welcome to BYC!
    Congrats on the chicken keeping allowance, I hope it passes(but don't count your chickens before they hatch-haha)

    Whether or not to use lighting for winter laying may depend on your long term goals.
    I use it with no ill effects that I've noticed, but I cull at 2-3 years.
    It doesn't guarantee older birds will lay all winter and can be tricky to manage and record effects.
    Pullets often lay thru their first winter with no lighting.

    Do you have coop built and ready?
    Do you have brooding equipment built and ready?
    It may be easier to find POL pullets in July than chicks.
    Downside to getting started birds instead of chicks is that you may bring in pests/disease.

    What is your climate?
    Putting your location in your profile can help folks give better answers/suggestions.
    1 person likes this.
  6. magine48

    magine48 Just Hatched

    May 16, 2016
    New Jersey

    Thanks so much for the detailed reply. I have not yet built my coop. I'm waiting for the township to begin the approval process before I invest in supplies. I just happen to be an obsessive researcher so I am trying to get all of the information I would need in advance.

    I live in Southern New Jersey in terms of climate. I do plan on culling around 2-3 years as well, as my goal is egg production and the township will be limiting us to 4 birds maximum.

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