I have a small flock of “backyard chickens.” The most current flock started out as 8 two years ago. Over time I have culled my flock down to two hens. There are all sorts of reasons why the others had to go. These chicks have been swapped, sold and yes even met what we call an “unfortunate demise.”
This year I decided that rather than do a small chick order, read that as 10 chicks, I decided to purchase a few chicks at the local farm supply. Now keep in mind I have quite a selection criteria: they must lay well, be Montana winter hearty, friendly and nice looking doesn’t hurt. Knowing all of this one can safely say I don’t want just any old chickens.
The local farm supply starts getting chicks in February and are done by the begining of April. I got 6 chicks mid-March, only to have 3 of them not survive the week. Three weeks later I would be able to purchase 2 more and a 3rd 5 days later. So I ended up with 6 chicks, in two different stages of development. Spring is slow in coming and they are still in the basement “brooder.” This is not good, but reality for their survival.
What I learned from all if this is next time I will order the 10 chicks, exactly what I want and delivered exactly when I want. If I have to give a few away, or send them to “freezer camp” it is much easier than running all over the state of Montana looking for just the right chicks. March is way too early for chicks in Montana, if you want to send them outside at about 4 weeks, orders arriving the 3rd or 4th week of April is mighty fine for me.