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Timing for starting a flock

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Skipcurt, Jan 21, 2018.

  1. Skipcurt

    Skipcurt Chirping

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    Is there any real disadvantage or advantage to starting with day old chicks near the end of April?

    Skip
     
    Gavinthesheep735, VHoff and Hamiam like this.
  2. Not if you keep them taken care of.
     
    Gavinthesheep735, VHoff and Hamiam like this.
  3. sylviethecochin

    sylviethecochin Crowing

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    Timing matters if you have bad or early winters. Chickens that are hatched in January will grow into maturity in June--at which point, there should be enough sun that they begin laying eggs soon, and will keep laying as winter comes around. This year, we got ours in May--and by October, only a quarter of them had begun to lay. Most still aren't laying, because they never got the sunlight to kick-start the laying process.

    But I'm in PA and you're in GA. You'll have a longer summer. I would guess that your chosen starting time will be an advantage for you, because by the time you're kicking them out, there will be a lot of sun, and they'll have started laying eggs a month or two before winter sets in.
     
  4. Folly's place

    Folly's place Free Ranging 7 Years

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    I don't want chicks before early April up here, and that's pushing it. I start them in my attached warmer garage.
    For me, it's about the shipping; having chicks in the mail in either very cold or very hot weather is bad for them and increases the odds of having dead/ dying chicks arrive. Ugly!
    You might be able to start a bit sooner, and if there's a good hatchery within driving distance, that's the best.
    Mary
     
  5. 8 Chicks 1967

    8 Chicks 1967 Songster

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    The advantage is if you want them to be more socially involved with you. The first 6 weeks you spend with them imprints on the rest of their life. If you don't want that involvement, get the size flock you want for a hobby or to sustain your familys needs. That way as they grow they will sort out a pecking order more naturally and you don't have to quarantine and integrate with all the headache's by adding new chicks here and there.
     
  6. Skipcurt

    Skipcurt Chirping

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    I have reached out to several local farms, hatcheries and individuals because I would rather buy locally. Two of two farms have not contacted me back, 1 of three hatcheries has not contacted back and the two that did do not sex their birds and the individuals I've spoken with have been very helpful but timing is the issue.

    This being my first go at chickens I would like them to be social for us as I'm sure that makes it more enjoyable.

    It really seems like the mail order hatchery is the way to go (at least for me) because you get what you want, when you want. Hopefully the sexing turns out well but nothing is guaranteed.
     
  7. 8 Chicks 1967

    8 Chicks 1967 Songster

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    make sure you ask for no "Packing Peanuts" unless you want several cockerels.
     
  8. Folly's place

    Folly's place Free Ranging 7 Years

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    I've had very good experiences with Cackle and MurrayMcMurray; I don't know what's closer to you though. If you want a few birds, you might be able to combine an order with someone nearby; check your state thread here.
    I'd recommend getting the Marek's disease vaccine for them; it's inexpensive and might pay off for them someday.
    The local feed stores will likely be selling chicks fairly soon; they won't be vaccinated, and the breed selection won't be huge, but it's not a bad way to start either.
    I usually weaken and get a few from TSC every year too.:oops:
    Mary
     
  9. moniquem

    moniquem Songster 5 Years

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    I'm ordering my chicks from Meyer Hatchery, I've heard great things about them and they have all the breeds that I want. They'll arrive April 3 or 4th.
     
  10. Skipcurt

    Skipcurt Chirping

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    I did hear this over the weekend and I'll be sure to ask or request firmly. Thank you!!
     

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