When to purchase chickens

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by terraT, Apr 4, 2018.

  1. terraT

    terraT In the Brooder

    Apr 4, 2018
    When I get my coop up and ready can I get chicks anytime of the year or only certain times?
  2. ChooksNQuilts

    ChooksNQuilts Free Ranging

    Nov 26, 2017
    Southwest Idaho
    Depends on whether you want to get chicks at a feed store (like Tractor Supply) or order them from a hatchery and get them at the post office.
    Feed stores only have chicks for part of the year. Usually Feb/March to Aug/Sept.
    The feed stores often don’t have very many sexed breeds.
    If you buy chicks straight run (unsexed) then you’ll need a plan for what you’ll do with any cockerels.
    Also, feed stores don’t always have knowledgeable employees so you’ll need to do your own homework.

    Hatcheries will often have chicks year round, but the minimum number you have to order goes up in the fall/winter months. Usually 15 to 25 birds.
    Hatcheries usually have a lot more breeds but there’s always some risk getting chicks in the mail.

    Another option may be finding a breeder in your area. You’d want to research and talk to others who have bought birds from them so you can be sure they’re selling healthy young birds and not older/sick hens that hardly lay anymore.

    I decided to get my first batch of chicks from the feed store and so far it’s been fine.
    terraT and Percheron chick like this.
  3. Acre4Me

    Acre4Me Crowing

    Nov 12, 2017
    Western Ohio
    Anytime. @ChooksNQuilts makes good points. The only other thing I don't know is if laying might be delayed if a pullet came to laying age (usually somewhere around 16-20 weeks of age) during shortest amount of daylight (when chickens often naturally will stop or reduce laying) and would begin laying at a little older age due to the shorter days. In Montana, you can have some extreme temps, I think, so shipping might be problematic during the cold months.
    terraT likes this.

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