Chicken Forum banner
1 - 8 of 8 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
393 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am about to get chickens in 2 weeks.

I have decided to go with the australorp because it is more heat hardy. I have a choice between 3 breeders.

All have the breed I want at the age I want (started 3 month pullets) and are the same distance. Price is per bird. I want 3. I included the high priced one just in case I was missing something but I don't think it will work. So, it's mostly between 1 and 2.

1. One is larger scale, has NPIP, and vaccinates against alot and is the middle of the 3 at $20 because of a sale due to over population but normal is $23 (This price includes the extra vaccines.)

2. The other is a small scale farm and raises the birds in a healthy manner. I would raise the birds the exact same way if I were to brood them myself. They are the cheapest at $15.

3. The third is certified organically raised and is the most expensive at $30 a bird and is raised from the owners of a small local organic feed store. Their farm style is kinda Amish with draft animals and what not. (I would love to do farm like this eventually)

  • I can't have a closed flock because of a large wild diseased bird population in my area in general.
  • Price is important
  • The flock keeping healthy is most important (I don't want to shoot myself in the foot because I was too cheap but can't be too high.)
  • My yard is in no way organic so the moment the birds get to the yard... but will be fed organic

Also What questions to ask? I know the bugs, rough vaccine records, Can I see it, and how to get the birds?

Breeder 1, Large scale breeder
Breeder 2, Small Farmer
Breeder 3, Organic Small Farmer
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,492 Posts
I would go small farmer. Inspect the conditions they are kept in, see if it meets your standards. We are certified by the state, but not NPIP ( NPIP also means you cannot see the flock or conditions they are in, because NPIP will not allow you, an outsider, to, from all I understand of NPIP, that can be good, but on a learning farm like mine, would not serve my customers), vaccines, some are good, but all may not be necessary. We learn more and more each day about the good and bad of vaccines on the human race. We only vaccinate birds that come in from hatchery, all that we breed and hatch on site, no vaccines. I have not noticed a difference myself in the birds.

If you are not full organic, then switching over their feed will be god enough, I would think. Again, we are not organic, we feed soy free /non GMO and use all organic we can find, ever since getting chickens.

So, to me, happy, healthy, and go from there. As far as heat tolerant, we live near Houston. The first heat we had last summer, took the life of one of my birds, it was a black Austrolorp, we had two, now have only one...


Jim
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
393 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I would go small farmer. Inspect the conditions they are kept in, see if it meets your standards. We are certified by the state, but not NPIP ( NPIP also means you cannot see the flock or conditions they are in, because NPIP will not allow you, an outsider, to, from all I understand of NPIP, that can be good, but on a learning farm like mine, would not serve my customers), vaccines, some are good, but all may not be necessary. We learn more and more each day about the good and bad of vaccines on the human race. We only vaccinate birds that come in from hatchery, all that we breed and hatch on site, no vaccines. I have not noticed a difference myself in the birds.

If you are not full organic, then switching over their feed will be god enough, I would think. Again, we are not organic, we feed soy free /non GMO and use all organic we can find, ever since getting chickens.

So, to me, happy, healthy, and go from there. As far as heat tolerant, we live near Houston. The first heat we had last summer, took the life of one of my birds, it was a black Austrolorp, we had two, now have only one...

Jim
Thanks for the advice.

I have been leaning towards the small farmer. He built my coop and he's a nice guy with a lot of knowledge. Plus, he seems more transparent. I just wanted to make sure I wasn't being cheap and then not getting the extra $5 vaccinated birds didn't cost me.

I think I was unclear. By heat tolerate, I mean more so than the other breed I was debating the Buff Orpington. It's not by much though.

I mostly want a calm and docile heritage bird that has been time tested and lays 3-4 eggs a week during peak laying period. Broodiness can be tolerated but not preferred.

But I know they are not completely heat tolerant when it comes to texas heat. I got A great backyard for summer (all shade and I'm gonna put a cheap mister near them on the triple digit days).

I'm kinda in it for the eggs and I also hear they are slightly more feed efficient compared to the orpington because of weight. For eggs, I'm expecting 9-12 in the summer and at least half a dozen or maybe a little less in winter for 3 birds. More would be a nice as long as it's under 15.

The feed is probably gonna be Coyote Creek or Hugelland.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
393 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Oh, and you can always vaccinate yourself if ya like. Although it may not be cost effective for a few birds.

Jim
The cost is what kills it it be about $200 for a handful. The ones I really want is Newcastle's and Infectious Bronchitis.

I can only have three and I kinda want to experiment now that I have a chance. The bigger question is how important are vaccines in a flock with slight exposure to wild birds?

Sad Story
Originally, I was going to get Buff Orpingtons Pullets from my Cousin's son's science project. The buff orpington eggs are the cheapest. He did a project on which method of turning eggs is better auto or hand. The result was they were equal and he won 1st prize. He loves poultry science.

My cousin did not want any more chickens but want him to have his experiment. She's stuck because she can't kill them either.

So, she was going to free cycle them and I had first choice of the pullets. But something happened and they all died.
 
1 - 8 of 8 Posts
Top