The Pros & Cons of Mail-Order Chicks

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Spring is the best time to add new chickens to your flock! You can order chicks through the mail or buy them locally. Here are some of the pros & cons of purchasing mail-order chicks.

Whether you’re thinking of adding to your backyard flock this year or starting out with your first chickens on your homestead, you may be wondering where to get baby chicks. There are lots of places to find them, and there are pros and cons to each source.

While local feed supply stores often carry chicks in the spring, you are usually stuck with a very limited choice of breeds, you may end up with more roosters than you would like, and they may not be the healthiest chicks you can find. If you live within driving distance of a hatchery or breeder, this may be the best option, but many people must resort to buying mail-order chicks.

This will give you the widest range of breed options, and you’ll be able to choose all-female chicks if you want. Good hatcheries will usually have a guarantee that your chicks will arrive healthy and alive, and that they will be the sex you ordered. Be sure you do your homework, research hatcheries online, ask for recommendations from other homesteaders and choose a reputable source before you order.

Ultimately, you will have to make the best decision for you, but here are a few of the pros and cons of buying mail-order chicks:

Mail Order Pros

  • Wide range of breeds available
  • Better chance of receiving sex ordered – whether it be males or females
  • Low minimum orders
  • Ability to choose delivery date
  • Ability to research hatchery’s reputation and credentials in advance
  • Order from home – in your pj’s if you want!

Mail Order Cons

  • More expensive than buying locally
  • No option to handpick exact chicks you receive
  • Slight chance chicks will be delayed en route and not make it
Read more about purchasing mail-order chicks at FreshEggsDaily.com


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