Sexed Birds from Show Breeders

Discussion in 'Chicken Breeders & Hatcheries' started by ThatCityChick, Jun 23, 2019.

  1. ThatCityChick

    ThatCityChick In the Brooder

    Jun 9, 2019
    Cincinnati, OH

    This will be my first time buying chickens.

    Where we live, we are not allowed to have roosters. I love the idea of getting heritage or rare breeds from a show quality breeder. However, most of the show breeders seem to sell only straight run.

    Am I stuck only buying from large commercial hatcheries?

    Breeds interested in:
    Barred Plymouth Rock
    Ameraucana (Not EEs)
    Silverrud's Blue (Isbar)

    Thanks for any insight!
  2. EggSighted4Life

    EggSighted4Life Free Ranging

    Hi, hope you are enjoying BYC! :frow

    That's right... breeders do not have the ability to sex chicks unless they are auto sexing or sex linked. Crested cream Legbars and Bielefelder are a couple possibilities I can think of off hand.

    As someone who breeds I can tell you that only about 1 in 100 chick hatched actually meets MY expectation once mature. Which makes hatcheries not as unappealing because they hatch a LOT more than most breeders.

    If you want heritage rare breed birds that are sexed.. you may be able to buy started birds at a breeder. Noting that even NPIP breeders are not required to report Marek's.

    Of the hatcheries I used... Meyer's is preferred. Go for the Speckled Sussex, they are beautiful and fairly friendly. Barred Rock (or any color) are some of my faves... after raising many breeds you list. I breed bantam Ameraucana, and I like EE a lot! They are such a mixed bag of personality and individual beauty with no two looking exactly the same.

    I know My Pet Chicken sells sexed blue Ameraucana! And they have a huge selection of other breeds. Their shipments cannot make it on my route with enough survivors for me to order from them again. But many folks get great results from them every day!

    Happy adventuring! :wee
  3. Pekin747

    Pekin747 Songster

    Feb 20, 2019
    If u want rare birds that r show quality stay away from bug hatcherys because they breed for quantity not quantity
    U can always buy straight run and sell or give away the roosters before they start to crow
  4. RoostersAreAwesome

    RoostersAreAwesome Free Ranging

    May 21, 2017
    You may be able to find cull pullets that don't perfectly fit the standard for whatever breed you're looking for.
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2019
    EggSighted4Life likes this.
  5. Ol Grey Mare

    Ol Grey Mare One egg shy of a full carton. .....

    Mar 9, 2014
    My Coop
    Purchase straight run and process, sell, give away males or find a breeder selling "started birds" at 6+ weeks when sexing by characteristics is possible but know you will pay more for started confirmed pullets
    Birds of a Feather likes this.
  6. Folly's place

    Folly's place Crossing the Road

    Sep 13, 2011
    southern Michigan
    Will you be showing your birds! If not, and as a new chicken owner, hatchery chicks are a very good choice. You can get pullets only (almost) in several breeds, and see what you like. Show quality chickens will cost more, may actually lay fewer eggs, and unless you pay $$$ for actual SQ individuals, will likely not be so very different from many hatchery chicks of the same breed. :oops:
  7. Aunt Angus

    Aunt Angus Crowing

    Jul 16, 2018
    Sacramento County, CA
    My Coop
    If it helps any, BPRs, Isbars, and Welsummers are autosexing, and you can almost always tell if they are pullets or cockerels based on how they look as day-olds. That should help you get at least some of the breeds you are interested in.
  8. Folly's place

    Folly's place Crossing the Road

    Sep 13, 2011
    southern Michigan
    My experience has been that the very common types, like Barred Plymouth Rocks, will be smaller and not very close to the breed standard. Less popular colors of Plymouth Rocks will be better usually. The buff Rocks from Murray McMurray were really nice, years ago, for example.
  9. ThatCityChick

    ThatCityChick In the Brooder

    Jun 9, 2019
    Cincinnati, OH
    Meyer Hatchery is close enough I could drive, and not have to do shipping. I really want day old chicks, because they are so cute, and I want to experience that. I don't want to do hatching eggs, because I don't have an incubator and I don't want to purchase an expensive one for just 1 or two hatches. Plus then I would have the issue of unwanted males.
  10. Acre4Me

    Acre4Me Crowing

    Nov 12, 2017
    Western Ohio

    Hi from western Ohio! There are many hatcheries in Oh, so many options. In addition, the National poultry show is held in Columbus in the Fall (run by APA, I think). Pretty sure there are sales at these shows. For hatcheries/breeders that are NPIP certified, go to NPIP Website to search be state. OH has 36 pages of listings and their breeds (breed codes in link on left side). You may find some options much closer to you, including smaller breeders.

    We purchased some chicks out of Meyer Hatchery extras bin to give to a broody hen. They were healthy and mom did a great job. Two of seven were males out of these sexed females (dissappointing), but we purchased at a great price. We managed to sell the unwanted males and some of the other chicks at a livestock auction. The two we kept remain healthy and lay well (currently age 10 months). Of the 7 chicks all different breeds, most seemed good reps of the breed, but one was much, much darker than standard.

    We’ve bought some chicks from Eagle Nest Hatchery (Osceola, Oh). Very healthy, good success. Most or all of their bantams are show quality, but we’ve never bought the bantams. They have 3 or 4 show quality regular sized chickens, and the two SQ breeds we have had from them were really very nicely conforming to breed standards. But, we’ve also gotten non-SQ from them and there is more variation in the birds, but they still layed eggs even if not so SQ-beautiful!

    You have Mt Healthy hatchery in Cincinnati. I have not purchased from them before, in part bc they have had at least 2 Salmonella outbreaks linked to them. Not sure if they have had any in recent few years, so that would be a very close option for a bigger hatchery.

    Good luck!
    Aunt Angus likes this.

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