Picking chickens- wwyd

jenn-

Chirping
Mar 5, 2015
203
4
63
Southern Alabama
My coop is finally almost finished. I don't want to raise from chick so I am/was looking for some pullets in the 8-14 wk age. I'm part of a local chicken Facebook page that I had thought I would buy some from. Yesterday my father in law called and told me he knew someone that was getting rid of their chickens. Supposedly some are just starting to lay. He has no clue if these chickens have been treated like pets and well socialized or like livestock and just fed and watered. He also couldn't tell me their breeds (he's supposed to be finding some of this out).

So, pay for younger pullets that I pick out the varieties and can bond with or take a shot in the dark and possibly get some free already laying ones?
 

lazy gardener

Crossing the Road
7 Years
Nov 7, 2012
27,615
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I'd take a shot in the dark. My response would be different if I already had chickens, and was looking to add to the flock. (Actually, I'd never go that route due to biosecurity issues) Or, if I had my heart set on a particular breed or two. But it sounds like you are not set on a particular breed. So, a free starter flock would be great. It would be best if you could have someone go with you to look at the chickens, instead of just having them delivered to you. That way, if you get there and don't like what you see, you can walk away. The worst thing you could face with this scenario is to bring home sick chickens. Some diseases will infect your property forever. But, you face that risk when you bring chickens in from anywhere.
 

jenn-

Chirping
Mar 5, 2015
203
4
63
Southern Alabama
I'd take a shot in the dark.  My response would be different if I already had chickens, and was looking to add to the flock.  (Actually, I'd never go that route due to biosecurity issues)  Or, if I had my heart set on a particular breed or two.  But it sounds like you are not set on a particular breed.  So, a free starter flock would be great.  It would be best if you could have someone go with you to look at the chickens, instead of just having them delivered to you.  That way, if you get there and don't like what you see, you can walk away.  The worst thing you could face with this scenario is to bring home sick chickens.  Some diseases will infect your property forever.  But, you face that risk when you bring chickens in from anywhere.


Thank you for your reply. I'm still waiting on answers to my questions about the chickens. Although I am not set on any particular breeds, I know that these were TSC chicks so there was a very limited selection of varieties.
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium Feather Member
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I got an already laying flock for cheap for my brand new coop when I started out.......
.......wish I hadn't, in a way, as they brought lice and scaly leg mites that I am still dealing with to some extent 18 months later.

Free, or cheap, will not necessarily be without costs in the long run.
 
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LeiaLayers5

Songster
May 12, 2015
327
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126
Suffolk VA
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It might be good as a starter experience barring any problems they could potentially bring with them due to health. But as someone who just herself got a starter flock with older chickens, it has been fun, but I think the next time around we are going with raising chicks so we can pick the breeds and form a bond with them. The older girls we got were from a large farm and while they interact with us some, we cannot really connect with them and that takes away from the experience somewhat for me. We are about to add 2 younger EEs whom the breeder handled and treated more like pets while raising and they were very friendly and enjoyed being held unlike our current girls who barely put up with it. If you want more of a relationship with yours I would go with picking out young pullets that you can bond with at a young age rather than rehomed chickens. Just a bit of advice from another newbie! Let us know how it goes either way!
 

jenn-

Chirping
Mar 5, 2015
203
4
63
Southern Alabama
Thank you for your responses. It looks like the older group might not be available after all. It sounds like their owner was just having one of those overwhelmed days. Now back to the finishing touches before I can hunt for my first flock.

Would you suggest that I try to get all 6 from one breeder? Should I see if their flock is mixed up with each other or separated by breeds?
 

LeiaLayers5

Songster
May 12, 2015
327
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Suffolk VA
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Thank you for your responses. It looks like the older group might not be available after all. It sounds like their owner was just having one of those overwhelmed days. Now back to the finishing touches before I can hunt for my first flock.

Would you suggest that I try to get all 6 from one breeder? Should I see if their flock is mixed up with each other or separated by breeds?I
I would say that it would probably be more convenient to get them all at once so that they grow up together because integrating them later can be tricky at times, but depending on breeds that could prove difficult. If you are not set on any particular breed then you could check which the breeder has available and get them all at once from the one. Depends on how particular you are. I know the breeder we are getting our EEs from has many types of chickens so they are already used to being around other breeds which is a plus, but our GCs have only been around others like themselves so that will be the issue come integration time.
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
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Quote: This is may be a misunderstanding.....integration depends on 'units' or groups of birds that have been living together, regardless of breed.

You add some birds new to the coop and the existing coop inhabitants put on their territoriality gear and attack the newcomers......
.......it has nothing to do with breed, it's about territory- space/food/water.
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium Feather Member
8 Years
Nov 27, 2012
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If you get birds from different places and bring them all to your place and put them in a new coop all at the same time,
the territoriality issue is lessened, because they are all in a new place.

But then you have to worry about biosecurity...and age groups.

it's always good to have some separate enclosures or wire crates to isolate/separate birds that are fighting.
 

LeiaLayers5

Songster
May 12, 2015
327
44
126
Suffolk VA
My Coop
My Coop
Quote: This is may be a misunderstanding.....integration depends on 'units' or groups of birds that have been living together, regardless of breed.

You add some birds new to the coop and the existing coop inhabitants put on their territoriality gear and attack the newcomers......
.......it has nothing to do with breed, it's about territory- space/food/water.
I never claimed to be the expert in this I only know what I have read and if you disagree that is fine, but I have heard from a couple sources that breeds who have only been around others of the same breeds have issues initially taking to new breeds. Chalk it up to typical integration issues if you want just saying what I have heard.
 

MANNA-PRO

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