Live Chick FAQ's
Are you a hatchery?
No, we do not hatch chicks at our location. We work with several hatcheries to provide you with the best selection and pricing on a wide variety of chicks and eggs.
When will my chicks ship?
Chicks are generally shipped within 4 weeks after you have placed your order. Please contact us via phone or email to obtain a ship date within one week of placing your order.
How long will it take for my chickens to arrive?
Please allow 1 to 3 days for your chicks to arrive once shipped. Your chicks will survive for 72 hours on their egg yolk. We cannot control the postal shipments. Some two day shipments may arrive in one day.
Can you ship chickens, ducks, bantams, and turkeys all on the same order?
Yes, all of our poultry is hatched on the same day. Please note gamebirds and some specialty breeds will ship separate from poultry orders.
What does the term STRAIGHT RUN mean?
The term straight run refers to chickens that are boxed as hatched. Generally an order of 100 will have 50 males and 50 females. The smaller number of chicks you order, the less likely you are to have the 50/50 ratio. An example would be an order of 6 chicks could have 2 pullets and 4 males, reducing your ratio to 33% females. There is no guarantee of the ratio of pullets to males when you order straight runs
What does the term PULLET mean?
A pullet is a female chicken, also known as a hen.
At what age can I tell males from females?
Most breeds, you can tell the sex of the bird at around 16-18 weeks. Some items, such as guineas or some breeds of geese, you will not be able to tell unless you observe them mating.
How are chickens, ducks etc. sexed as day old chicks?
There are some breeds that are color sexable and some breeds that are bred to be feather sexed. If the bird has not been bred to be feather sexed or color sexed, it must be vent sexed by a professional sexor.
Will our Post Office deliver our chicks to us or do we need to pick them up at the post office?
Each post office has their own policy. Please notify your post office that you are expecting poultry and verify the policy of your local post office.
Do you export?
No, you must have a United States Postal Zip code for us to ship poultry to you.
Do you reship poultry that happens to die in shipment?
We will reship as long there are enough chicks to make the shipment safely. Generally, if your loss is only a couple of chicks, we will credit your account.
My ducks came in fine and suddenly started dying.
Ducks will water log easily. Give them water for about 15 minutes and then take it away for about 15 minutes. Repeat this about 4 times. Do not let them run out of water though.
Can I start my chicks on newspaper?
No, newspaper is too slippery and will cause spraddle legs.
What type of shavings should I use?
We recommend Pine. Do not use Cedar, as it can be lethal.
My Cornish rocks are sitting around, have a distended abdomen, and are starting to die.
These are the symptoms of Ascites (fluid in the body cavity), which comes from over feeding the poultry.
Can I mix my new babies with an existing flock?
This is not recommended. Poultry has a pecking order established within its flock, and if you add babies, they will become an immediate target. You should wait until the new poultry reaches maturity to mix them together. There may still be some pecking establishing the new order, but it will be less of a factor.
What causes my poultry to peck?
There are many things that cause poultry to peck. They are naturally cannibalistic, and many factors will bring out that trait. Cannibalism will occur more often under crowded conditions. You should make sure you are allowing plenty of room for your poultry. Mature poultry needs 3 to 4 feet per bird. Be sure your birds are receiving the right nutrients in their diet and that they are not "bored." You might add some grass or hay to their diet. If the poultry does pick enough to draw blood, you should clean up the bird quickly. Once they taste the blood, they will go back for more. You may want to purchase anti-pick lotion from your local feed store.
When will my hens begin to lay?
Hens will begin to lay at about 20 weeks of age. It does vary some from breed to breed. You also need to be sure that your hens are getting enough light. Poultry needs 14 hours or more of light per day to lay efficiently. This means you will need to apply artificial light during the winter months.