You ordered how many chickens?!
That's what poor Bootsy is asking Mr. Nick at least. We placed our order for The Farmstead's laying flock with Murry McMurray Hatchery last night. And it was quite the order!
- 15 BARP, Barred Rock Females
- 50 BLSP, Black Star Females
- 7 CKMP, Cukoo Maran Females
- 1 NEHC, New Hampshire Male
- 1 RIRC, Rhode Island Red Male
A grand total of 74 baby chicks set to arrive the week of March 19th. The handsome man and I are flying down to Houston for our soon to be Godson's Christening the weekend before so we figured it would be easier on the farm sitter if there weren't a bunch of tiny mouths to worry about. Plus this will give us enough time to build their hen house. We figure for the first two months they'll live under the brooder lights in the barn and then by about May they'll be ready to move outside.
So why did we pick what we did?
The main layers are the Black Star Females, you've also heard them called Black Sex Links. We've never had this breed before but have always been impressed with Little Red Hen, who is a Red Sex Link. She's very tiny but that's because her main focus is laying, nothing else. In our research we've found that one of the best layers of brown eggs is Black Sex Links so that's what we're going with.
The problem is, Sex Links are hybrids, so they can't reproduce true to breed. Which is why we are getting more Barred Rock hens and two Red Roosters. You guessed it, that's how you get a Sex Link. This group will be our breeding flock. We're going with two roosters because they will have a lot of land to free range on so we thought just one might be to much work for the poor guy.
The next problem is, we need someone to hatch the eggs! None of our current hens have exhibited broodiness traits, so after more research, we've chosen the Cuckoo Maran to sit on the eggs the Barred Rocks lay.
And then what about our other flock? We're keeping them of course (I mean we hand raised them inside our home for two months, that's not a connection you just throw away!) But this flock will stay our home flock. Plus, our home flock was not raised organically (I fed Medicated Feed to them as chicks at the advice of the feed store). But now, a full year in to our first chicks we're ready to take the step up. The Farmstead's laying flock will be raised organically from the beginning.
The best part? We ordered so many chicks we're getting a Free Rare Chick thrown in for free.
"A real surprise awaits you with one of our Free Rare Chicks. Crested varieties, speckled beauties, blue chicks, huge giants, feather-legged exotics, spangled and belted Old World fowl are just some of the different varieties we have to choose from in this offer. You will be amazed and delighted with one of these wonderful chicks."
Oh I can barely contain my excitement...