Spring has sprung and the crazy hustle and bustle has begun. It's been awhile since I've had a chance to sit down and write a blog, I want to give you a peek into why it takes so long to fill those chick and pullet orders. Right now is the time when every customer that has placed a chick or pullet order, comes down with a bad case of spring fever and wants to know when they'll get there shipment of fluffy butts. I get about 20 or more emails and phone calls each day asking that very question. I can guess a time frame for shipment but it really means nothing when dealing with chickens because they really don't care about my plans. There are just too many factors to figure when guessing a shipping time, here are just a few of those factors to consider...
Our incubators are located in a Morton building without heat so temps fluctuate which also effects hatch rate. We hope to fix that problem in the near future.
We place eggs in the incubator every Monday night, usually about 8 trays and we have a hatch every Monday night. It takes 21 days for an egg to hatch.
The photo to the left is the farmer working on an incubator as quickly as possible before the eggs get cold. It seems that this was the year that all of our egg turner motors decided to have a break down, if eggs aren't turned, eggs don't hatch. You might read that eggs need to be turned 3 times a day...wrong! Our turner turns the eggs every hour, more turns, better hatch. Just one more thing that effects the hatch rate. In the back of this huge incubator is a fan blade that is as tall as me and it needs to turn and blow air across the eggs at just the right speed. If it's the wrong speed it effects the hatch. That's Just one more variable to figure into many others.
So when a customers asks why aren't my chicks here yet, should I say the turner broke down, the fan was blowing to fast, it was to cold for fertility, or the hens decided not lay an egg last month...
We just purchased 3 more brooders just like this one to give us even more space to growout chicks into young pullets. We like to raise them on wire not in shavings. Shavings + poop + water = Illness.
Be patient with us as we continue to work through the orders, we're hatching just as fast as the hens will allow. We like our hens happy and healthy and you'll thank us for it when you see your healthy fat beautiful chicks.
Have a great day, I'll be calling you soon to say your chicks are on the way!