Friday, April 17, 2009

My Chicken Venture

My Chicken venture started two years ago when in my travels I came across a chap who had some neglected Red Star Pullets for sale. They were good birds just needed to be fed more than weekly. I offered him $25 for the ten birds and he accepted I took the birds home and set them up in a couple of rabbit cages until they got old enough to wander the homestead without the protection of the cage. I then turned them loose and set back to enjoy the nice flock in the barnyard only ten birds doesn't really make a nice flock. I then realized I needed a lot more chickens. The next spring after having done much research and destroying several hatchery catalogs I was ready to order chicks. I ordered heavily on the Buff Orpington as they were to become my main breed (which they have done) I then ordered some Araucanas, Light Brahmas, Rhode Island Reds and a few Red Cornish Rock Crosses. I had calculated that with some careful feed acquisitions and plenty of green summer feed I could turn a decent profit off of egg sales. I later lined up two places that were willing to buy my eggs. Then my mind wandered... what if I could sell a chick for roughly the same amount I can get for a dozen eggs (1.50-2.00) I said "It would make more sense to sell chicks". I only had one problem, no incubator. I solved that problem by locating a used GQF 1202. One step closer to a full fledged hatchery I was. I now keep the incubator full of eggs. I have moved all of my Buff Orpington hens in the coop with my two best roos (four was to many). I use the eggs from the coop go for hatching and my loose bird flock provides enough for our use and for some sales as well. I plan to sell chicks until they won't sell any more than carry over those chicks to sell as started pullets in the spring. We'll see how that goes. I do have some chicks that were ordered from Mcmurray's. I will be getting some Speckled Sussex, Black Australorps, Silver laced Wyandottes and Delawares. I'm really excited about the Delawares in particular. So the future looks bright in the poultry business. In a later post i'll cover my Pigeons and my gamebird aspirations but i'll let my plans get a little firmer first.

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