Hard to believe in this day and age that live animals can be shipped via U.S. mail. Order newly hatched chicks these days and you can get them shipped to your post office. Evidently each chick has the remainder of the yolk sack inside them that will last for several days. It can take that long for the last of the eggs to hatch, and the mother won't move until the last egg hatches. This gives chicken breeders about three days to get them through the mail. Last year was my first time doing this, and boy was my mail lady anxious to get me there for pick up. When I entered the building loud chirps could be heard immediately. A cacophony of tiny bird sounds, unbelievably load, pouring from the mailroom. The look of relief on the mail ladies face upon my announcement of pickup could be FELT. I cradled the box under one arm and rushed to the old dodge to make my way home. The sound was deafening, such tiny bodies, such piercing sound. My poor poor mail lady.
That day I won't soon forget, the long ride home and the dismay at finding the almost mummified remains of several chicks that did't make it. They do send extras in the event of catastrophe but somehow that doesn't make up for the loss. Then there is the dunking of each little beak into the water as you transfer them to their new home. Let me tell you, allowing your hen to go broody doesn't sound like the worst thing in the world after all that mess. I could rename farming to "101 ways to make your life harder" , like this is really better than letting hens hatch out their own chicks.
Born in New Hampshire and raised in Maine, Eva's passion for living self sustainably began with Helen and Scott Nearing. Both were homesteaders who carved their lives from the land. Eva now lives in Eastern West Virginia, with her husband Dain and daughter Shayna, carving out her own life.