Stupid question about getting chicks

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by valmom, Dec 9, 2007.

  1. valmom

    valmom Songster

    Sep 23, 2007
    I currently have 6 laying hens and 2 roos. I am getting the itch to have more [​IMG][/img]

    I know I don't have the set up to hatch them out, so, ordering chicks seems the way to go. Since there is a minimum size order, I will talk to my neighbor and see if they want to add to their chickens.

    It is winter, and I know we can't get them in the winter. But, it is still cold up here in the spring- what temp outside does it have to be so they don't freeze to death in the mail?? How long do I have to wait to order them this spring. Then, they spend the whole summer growing up and are old enough to lay just when they all stop laying (we don't light the coop- they get the winter off). How do you work around that? Just raise them the first year then let them start laying as yearlings? Order them in the fall and keep them in the house all winter? (I don't think that will work for SO). I just can't seem to plan this out so it works right.
  2. ozark hen

    ozark hen Living My Dream

    Apr 4, 2007
    Mansfield, MO
    first off, what kind of chickens do you want? What kind do you have? Do you just want more of what you already have? If that is it then I would just wait till spring and let nature do it's thing. [​IMG] If you want more than do order in the spring. If you look under Hatcheries you will find that there are some with minimums of five or so? They won't ship till weather permits. Better yet, if you live near a hatchery (like I do)then go there yourself in the spring and it is like being a kid in a candy shop. [​IMG] I got mine last April and they were/are laying daily for me now. Some breeds lay all winter long without the extra light. We have a timer on our coop lights (the new energy efficient bulbs)to keep things at a constant. But as you say, you don't use lights then I would just get the breeds who lay all winter long. If you go to each Hachery you will see the stats for each breed. Now do keep the new chicks in a brooder under some heat until they are feathered out. When I got my chicks there was snow on the ground..first week in April..and I kept them in a large RubberMaid plastic tub from Wal-Mart. We put a 60wt. light bulb over them and a temperage gauge inside to keep the temp constant. All this you can read under raising baby chicks here. Hope some of this was of help to you? And most of all, welcome!!
  3. peepkeeper

    peepkeeper Songster

    Jul 5, 2007
    upstate New York
    Both Meyer and Mypetchicken ship as few as 3 chicks, but they won't ship again until spring. If you have 2 roos you'll probably have more chicks in the spring anyway for free!
  4. lurky

    lurky Songster

    Jun 4, 2007
    Western MA
    Valmom..... you can go right to your feed store and ask about spring orders. You will get them cheaper that way than ordering yourself from the hatchery. I have seen them at exit 3 Brattleboro Agway in spring 07. I dont know if that is where you do business....but they do take orders. I think there might be advantages to letting one of your own chickens hatch her own eggs. She will take care of them and you wont have to raise them in the house. If you order them....some of us have trouble adding them to the flock because the older ones try to peck at them and it makes you feel like you need to take them out and 'save them'. But an advantage to the feed store chicks is that you can order JUST GIRLS.
  5. PurpleChicken

    PurpleChicken Tolerated.....Mostly

    Apr 6, 2007
    Where in Vermont are you? I have a bunch of Leghorn crosses who will be laying
    age by spring. They are already feathered (around 4 weeks old) and could join
    your laying flock by January. I may be up your way the week after Christmas.

  6. valmom

    valmom Songster

    Sep 23, 2007
    Lurky: That actually is my Agway- I saw chicks there last spring and it was the start of wanting to have chickens (we just happened to inherit our current adult flock).

    Our current hens have yet to show any inclination at all to sit on their eggs. I don't think they're a motherly bunch [​IMG] And, I don't want any more boys- we are lucky that the two we have now get along.

    Who knew there were breeds that lay in the winter! I will have to look into that. I have been browsing the hatchery websites from links here and like the look and hardiness of the New Hampshire Reds or RI Reds. We currently have Easter Eggers and I love the blue/green eggs, but my SO likes brown eggs better. I like the look of the barred breeds- they're cute.

    Purple Chicken- thanks for the offer, but I think I need the extra time to talk SO into more chickens...

    I think I will go with Agway in the spring.

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