Disclaimer: I don't meant to tread on anyone's toes, but I have really wanted to say this for a long time. I live in Israel, and we don't really have established reputable hatcheries here. Therefore, the heritage breed chickens are centered in the hands of a few enthusiasts who have managed to bring in birds or hatching eggs and breed them. There are only a few reputable breeders all over the country, and while I have deep respect for them, they set sky-high prices. For example, day old Marans or Wyandotte chicks are sold for about 25$. I think that's crazy, considering the fragility of baby chicks and the number you need to buy to make sure you establish your own flock. I think people are justified to ask more for pure-bred chickens, but not THAT much more. I mean, chickens are relatively easy and inexpensive to breed and care for, whether they are pure-bred or not. So all the hype boils down to one simple thing... greed. Supply and demand. I know of breeders who will actually rather throw away good hatching eggs than sell them at a reasonable price. And I think that stinks. To make heritage breeds more common in backyards, and available to all who are interested in them, prices need to be lowered. If we succeed in picking a breed to go with and establish a flock, I truly wish we can become those breeders who make a breakthrough and lower prices, making a reasonable profit and not taking advantage of people.