Why does rate of chick purchasing decrease mid-summer? What do you to compensate?

Discussion in 'Chicken Breeders & Hatcheries' started by DocumentedPure, Apr 22, 2017.

  1. DocumentedPure

    DocumentedPure Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 15, 2017
    Rocky Mountain West
    Hello my wise and experienced chicken raising friends,

    I am new to breeding chickens. In the chicken keeping I have done, I have always placed concern for the well-being of my feathered friends very highly on my list of priorities. I am careful to not expand beyond my abilities. I would appreciate if we could keep the discussion relating to the topics at hand. If you have any questions or complaints please contact me directly, or contact an administrator on this site if you choose. But let's please keep that type of discussion off of this thread. Please reply with thoughtful responses. Thank you.

    I have found out that across the board, young chicken sales decrease during the summer and winter months. The winter month sales drop makes sense to me because people do not want to brood a chick indoors, and because people want to enjoy observing their chick grow, which is less fun to do when enduring cold weather. But why are the sales high in Spring and Fall with a sharp decrease during the summer season?

    Do you, or are you familiar with, what is done to reduce or mitigate negative effects of the drop in sales? Do you separate the roosters from the hens? Do you reduce the size of your breeding program by taking some of the hens out of the programs to match demand or until anticipated rises in purchases? Do you just continue your normal rate of production, and make decisions about overstock once you get to that point?

    This question is a little off-topic, but at what point do you pull chickens or roosters from the program and install new ones? I plan to have coops of ten, but I am curious about how I could monitor individual hatch rates so that I could see which ones are performing, which ones have gone broody, how long they take until they have started producing after their molts, and to remove older ones once their biological clock tells them to retire. Have any of you separated the hens into solitary enclosures (within view of each other) a couple times per year in order to monitor egg production rates on an individual level?

    What are some methods of gauging rooster virility rates without pulling out a microscope? I have read that 9 to 1 hen to rooster rates are ideal, but at which point should I consider swapping a rooster for a younger one? Do you do it based on fertility rates over time in your populations? Do any of you have age limits where you systematically replace them?

    Thank you for taking the time to read this, and even more thanks if you respond. I look forward to your feedback. I am new to this, as I will always be for decades to come. We are all students of the world. The more I learn, the more I understand how little I truly know. Thanks again!
     
  2. PD-Riverman

    PD-Riverman Overrun With Chickens

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    Jan 14, 2012
    Conway SC
    I am a chicken breeder. I replace ALL chickens when they get between 2 and 3 years old----closer to 2. Reason, keeps better egg production up, less older age problems and death, buyers of the 2yr old birds gets a hen that will still lay good.

    Chick sales are highest in early spring because everyone wants to get a new flock raised and some eggs before winter. Alot of chicks are sold during the summer but there is Soooooo many people hatching, got broodies hatching and selling them for cheap to get rid of them which cuts into the "breeders" sales. Less want them during the summer because that runs them maturing in winter. Fall sales are decent because a lot of people want to get their chicks raised where early spring they will be started laying. plus spring is the best time to sell POL pullets for the highest dollar. Winter sales are more costly because of having to run more heat, having to buy all the feed because most everything it dead/dormant in the winter free-ranging.

    Location effects everything. I would Love to have all the free roosters I can get(well within my keeping range) because I can sell everyone at a good price. I can hatch sex-links---sell the pullets and feed/free-range the roosters and sell them when they get grown and make a little profit if I do their feed right. I even give my chick buyers a buy back on cockerels if they want----as soon as they can tell its a rooster bring it back and I will give you a new just hatched chick or give you your money back. That works out good because some wait till they are 4, 5, 6 months old to bring them back----good for me. They raised my roosters for free.

    Competition can get tough some times---like in the spring---Every feed store has chicks---that makes it tough for a breeder wanting to sell many.

    Hope this helps.
     
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2017
    1 person likes this.

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