Starting a poultry farm, What are your thoughts?

Discussion in 'Chicken Breeders & Hatcheries' started by chichi56788, Sep 26, 2010.

  1. chichi56788

    chichi56788 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It's official, my family become addicted to chickens. So much so that my father is thinking about buying a small farm and wants to start a poultry farm. What are everyone's thoughts on that? Is it hard to do? He wants to apply for a small business loan. So my questions are...
    How hard is it to breed large amounts of chickens and care for 75 chickens?
    Is this a profitable business?
    About how much is it to start it up?
    is 2 acres enough.

    I have done some research, but I still need some more help so any suggestions would be welcome.
     
  2. awesomefowl

    awesomefowl Argues with Goats

    Go for it! I hope it works! Good luck!
     
  3. chichi56788

    chichi56788 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks! I hope it works too. I think it could be fun.
     
  4. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    Well, if you are going to specialize in different types of chickens, you might want to visit the breeders threads to get ideas. Breeding pens, keeping the different kinds of chickens separate, etc.

    Also good biosecurity. Like not bringing home chickens from auction, etc. I only buy hatching eggs and chicks from feed stores and hatcheries now, after reading horror stories on here about people losing their flocks from carriers. Also not letting the public wander near your chickens to bring the diseases from their flocks.

    Feed is expensive. If you free range (which saves money on feed), you have to accept losses. You need to decide which to do.

    And specializing in hatching eggs is different from selling to the public via Craigslist. Have you thought about what your focus will be? Showing them? Working on improving the breed? Or selling chicks?
     
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2010
  5. chichi56788

    chichi56788 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:We will be specializing in:
    Silkies (white and buff)
    Showgirls (white, buff, gray)
    Frizzles (blue, black, white)
    Sizzles (blue, black, white, buff)
    Cochins (blue, black, white)
    Polish (white crested black)
    Orpington (black, blue)

    We would mainly focus on selling chicks and eggs through our own website.

    Also when you talk about good biosecurity, does that mean not buying from breeders? I want to have good quality chickens, and from what I have herd, hatcheries dont have the best quality birds.
     
  6. friskebluegills

    friskebluegills Chillin' With My Peeps

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    GO FOR IT!!! We are. My husband and I decided this year that we would start our own little poultry hatchery thing. We have 3 breeds, working on Lavender Orpingtons to come in next. We have 20 hens and 6 roosters of each breed. This year has been more of a staging year than anything. We live in WI so it's starting to get to cold to raise chicks now. I have a 500 egg incubator that I plan to alternate having so many hatch per week. If your talking about doing birds for meat there is great money in that also. 2 acres is enough, just make sure not to overcrowd yourself [​IMG] I would also suggest mixing your own feed. If you know a farmer, you will be able to save so much money in feed costs. We have 75+ chickens and 60+ ducks and geese so we go through more than 100 pounds off feed a day (yes we are going to be getting rid of a lot of ducks and geese, they are eating machines) anyways at $18.50 a bag from the feed mill times 30 that's $555 a month. doing it ourselves we only pay $120 so It's definantly worth it. Good luck!
     
  7. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    Quote:We will be specializing in:
    Silkies (white and buff)
    Showgirls (white, buff, gray)
    Frizzles (blue, black, white)
    Sizzles (blue, black, white, buff)
    Cochins (blue, black, white)
    Polish (white crested black)
    Orpington (black, blue)

    We would mainly focus on selling chicks and eggs through our own website.

    Also when you talk about good biosecurity, does that mean not buying from breeders? I want to have good quality chickens, and from what I have herd, hatcheries dont have the best quality birds.

    That would be over my head- that question. Because you might just need to start with a breeder's birds. I don't know. (I am not a breeder, just a backyard hobbyist.) The breeders' threads might help you a lot.

    I just wanted to caution you that carriers of disease can look healthy and pass your quarantine. Then ruin your flock.
     
  8. chichi56788

    chichi56788 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Do do you think 75 chickens can live well in 2 acers? And how do you mix your own feed. I tried to do that earlier this year, but my chickens wernt too happy with it [​IMG] Im a great at preparing chicken, but not too great at preparing food for chicken. Also, do you think $10000 will be enough for startup costs (not including the farm [​IMG])
     
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2010
  9. ericsplls

    ericsplls Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I bring eggs only or day old chicks on my place period. I'm not saying that I wouldn't bring a grown bird home but look at it and ask yourself is this bird worth losing every other bird on my property. If not leave it where it is. I say go for it but either go with less breeds/varieties or more birds. You listed 18 colors/breeds of birds. That means 18 roosters and a little over three hens per breeding pen. Just as soon as you depend on those 18 roosters you'll lose one in the middle of breeding season. Not trying to discourage you because I think it is great and there seems to be a growing number of people raising home flocks. Just plan ahead and if you take out a loan to get started try to make it an amount that you can make the payment without depending on profit from the buisiness for a couple of years.
     
  10. Illia

    Illia Crazy for Colors

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    Just remember that when starting with your first flock, PLEASE do not choose from hatcheries. When breeding poultry for yourself or business, breed quality stuff. Get from other dedicated breeders. [​IMG]

    Another thing is - Free Range vs Cages / Runs. Free Ranging saves a lot of money, allows for healthier eggs/chicks and even adult birds, but also could be dangerous due to predators. We free range our birds, but they "free range" on a large 3 acre pasture protected by a dog and a good fence. Even at night, their perches are high enough that we have yet to experience problems with predators.
     

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