Which Is Better? Day Old Chicks Or Started Pullets
When deciding how to begin your egg laying flock of chickens, most people research the many breeds available to pick out their favorites, then make a list and go shopping. While most backyard chicken owners choose to raise their chickens from day one, the option to purchase started pullets also exists.
What Is A Started Pullet?
The term “started pullet” refers to a female chicken that is approximately 16 to 24 weeks old and is ready to begin laying or may have just started to lay.
Advantages To Purchasing Started Pullets
- Skip the wait for eggs- The major advantage to purchasing started pullets over day old chicks is skipping the 4 to 6 month wait for eggs. After a short adjustment period after being moved to your poultry housing, the pullets are ready to get right to work laying eggs for you.
- Healthcare- the started pullets available from Meyer Hatchery have already been fully vaccinated for a wide range of poultry illnesses and have received an initial deworming. Many backyard flock owners do not consider the importance of vaccinating and deworming to keep their flock in the best health and laying well.
Advantages To Raising Day Old Chicks
- Socialization- If you have young children who will be around your chickens, raising them from day one will condition your chicks to being handled and allow your family to experience the excitement of brooding chicks into laying hens.
- Cost- Generally, the average cost of purchasing and raising a single chick from day old to 16 weeks is about $7 if feeding a regular chick starter (not organic or non-GMO), This price does not include brooder supplies but does include the cost of feed and electricity for that one chick. Since brooding several chicks will not increase the cost of electricity, the price per chick can decrease slightly if brooding more than a single chick.
So which option is better?
It depends on your goals. If you have a family who would enjoy watching the chicks grow up and be social with humans, day old chicks may be the better choice, if you can bear the wait for their first eggs.
But if you don’t want that waiting period and don’t have the desire to maintain a brooder full of chicks, then started pullets may be the way to go if you don’t mind paying more for that convenience. That’s why, at Meyer Hatchery, we offer both options to our customers. Leave us a comment below and tell us which you prefer, chicks or started pullets.
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