No More Chicks At Retail Outlets? What do you think?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Fred's Hens, Apr 7, 2011.

  1. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    With all the concerns about chicks sales, bins, uncared for chicks at chain feed stores, poor employee training and now TSC fencing off their chicks, the question comes to the fore. Are we seeing the beginning of the end?

    Chick sales at stores like Big Box feed store bins are on the edge, it seems. Some posters here mention calling animal protection. Would all this simply mean the end of Chick Days, as we've known them, at stores like this? I'm not sure we can have it both ways. Can't have chicks available at retail stores everywhere, which is popular with people, and have complete prevention of silly behavior by over worked, under trained, and under paid workers, not to mention the behavior of customers, their kids, etc.

    Should we expect that we shall soon only see a drive up/walk up counter at which folks can order the chicks, sight unseen, like a Big Mac? Their boxed order will be brought out to them. They'll never again see chicks in bins. It'll all be done behind closed doors, the way the hatcheries sell their chicks, either by drive up, walk up or by mail. Is this what it has come to? Does it seem to you that we may be at the end of an era? Thoughts?
  2. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    Or -- the price will increase considerably.

    One local feed store employee told me they do well to break even on the chicks, they make their money on the feed, feeders, all that.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 7, 2011
  3. BarefootMom

    BarefootMom Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 20, 2010
    Half Way, Missouri
    Chick days around here (with the exception of the NEW TSC) always only take place on Saturdays and a hatchery will go in and set up. You pay the hatchery, The feed store really doesn't have anything to do with the selling of the chicks. I would never buy chicks from someone that didn't know anything about them!
  4. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    Quote:Absolutely. Their margins are so limited on chicks. It's all about feed, feeders, etc. No doubt.
    The ranting here of late would certainly give the corporate execs at TSC the motivation to permanently shelve the old bin system. I suspect the winds of change are blowing hard. The fencing is likely just to get them through this year. Boxed orders only would seem the only way forward. Sign of the times.
  5. hennyannie

    hennyannie Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 12, 2011
    North Carolina
    I have a feed store near me that has been doing this for 25 years, they also have been ordering from the same hatchery that long. They treat the chicks like we treat ours. I would hate for this to affect them.
  6. sheila3935

    sheila3935 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 10, 2010
    Stonington, illinois
    At Rural King we dont really make money off the chickens and ducks the money comes from the feed brooder lamps etc. We still have ours in bins and this year we are having chickens longer time than in the past. Or at least our store is. We try very hard to take good care of the animals. I know some dont take as good care as I do. I treat each chick as if it was mine at home. There is a big problem with customers allowing children to man handle the animals. This is why some have gone to locking the chicks up. In the past parents wouldnt allow their children to do the things they do today. I know mine wouldnt have. Last night one of the girls that works nights said a man came to get 2 ducks later when the store was closing and they were checking for all customers out of the store they found the 2 ducks still in the box left in the pet department. Guess the guy changed his mind and didnt have the decency to bring them back to the farm department. Had they not found them they would have been dead by this morning.
  7. Watermelon_Gypsy

    Watermelon_Gypsy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 26, 2010
    I would hate to see this affect all stores as well. We went to Cal-Ranch today and IFA - we both felt that Cal-Ranch did an excellent job of caring for their chicks. Both times I was there today there was someone there tending to all the diff chicks, ducks & turkeys & they were all very healthy looking - the store employee also raised chickens & ducks & knew what she was doing. They also sell them very quickly & I saw that for myself, half the chicks were gone within the 3hr difference of my visits. We weren't so impressed with how the IFA store cared for their chicks, and some didn't look as healthy. The prices were also higher than the other.

    Shiela - that's terrible! Poor ducks :-( I don't understand people sometimes.
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2011
  8. BlackBrookPoultry

    BlackBrookPoultry Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 15, 2010
    Western Wisconsin
    Quote:I get upset when people ditch refrigerated items in the non-refrigerated part of the store. What kind of inconsiderate idiot would leave live ducks that need supplemental heat in a random place in the store? I personally would like to see the bins of chicks go away. How many people impulse buy "cute" chicks and ducklings only to improperly care for them or let there children crush them? It's terrible. I purposely don't hatch chicks or ducklings around easter to avoid people that think it's cute to buy little Suzie a chick that will either die shortly after or be a burden when it grows up and nobody knows what to do with it.
  9. hennyannie

    hennyannie Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 12, 2011
    North Carolina
    We also had better sense than to mistreat animals when I was a kid. We were taught that on a farm every life counted and if we cared for our animals they would care for us.
  10. Doopy

    Doopy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 16, 2009
    Indiana, USA
    Fred - if your concerns about stores not displaying babies each spring comes true - we would be getting what we deserve. The backyard chicken, duck, bunny craze that has swept the nation has led to complete idiots cruising the feed-type stores with absolutely no idea what they're doing. Here is a recent experience I had at "chick days".

    Two weeks ago I was at Rural King getting some fencing stuff and as I was entering the store I went through the "chick days" area of the store. There were two mommies looking at the chicks each with a child that looked to be around 18 months to maybe 2 yrs. old. Both had that "city" look and were afraid of the baby chicks. About 10 or 15 minutes later as I was leaving the store I saw one of the moms brushing the bantam chicks to one end of the tub while the other mom was putting the youngest child down into the tub in a sitting position in an effort to get some photographs. I might add that while this was going on the other child was pulling stuff off the shelves across the aisle. In all the commotion in the bantam chick tank with the child kicking and putting up a fuss, three or four chicks were smashed and all were terrorized. In an instant the store manager was there instructing the mom to get her kid out of the tank immediately. By this time there were several spectators gathered around. The manager picked up the smashed-dead chicks and started to put them in a carrying box and announced very loudly that these must be the chicks the ladies had selected and that they could pay for them at the check-out on their way out of the store. The young ladies seemed shocked at the manager's attitude and started to put up a fuss. At that very moment child #2 pulled something off the shelf that made a big crashing noise. The manager asked the ladies to pay for their purchase and to leave the store right away. I could have kissed her.

    Later, as the crowd of on-lookers made their way toward the check out aisles, the store manager returned and apologized to us and she said that kind of thing happens almost every day this year. I smiled all the way home.

    If the stores aren't making any money on the sale of young livestock and they must babysit the customers - why would they want to incur all this cost and aggravation. The next thing you know is the mommies will sue the store for unsanitary conditions if their precious snowflake gets a runny nose on the way home.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by