There are many places where you can purchase a stock of healthy chickens.
You can always ask friends or family who already keep chickens for recommendations on how to buy healthy chickens near you, or do a search for trusted sellers nearby. To make sure that you’re getting healthy birds, you will want to stick to reputable brick-and-mortar retail stores rather than flea markets or swap meets.
Believe it or not, mail-order chicks are a very popular choice for starting a flock. There are several large chicken hatcheries in the Midwest that ship chicks overnight through the US Postal Service.
To avoid making costly mistakes, check the seller’s stock of chickens for overall health and general upkeep. You will know how healthy the chickens are by the way they are kept and fed.
Evaluating Overall Chickens Health
You can tell the health of a chickens simply by looking at its external features.
Here are seven simple tests that will help you to know if the chickens you plan to purchase is healthy or not.
- Eyes: Check the chicken’s eyes. A healthy chickens always has bright and alert eyes without signs of discharge. Cloudy eyes could be a sign of blindness or underlying diseases.
- Beak: Check the beak and ensure that it is not broken or any pieces are flaking.
- Feathers: The chickens feathers should provide good coverage without bald patches and apparent signs of serious injuries.
- Mites: Healthy chickens should be free of mite and lice. You can tell the presence of lies and mind at the base of the chicken’s feathers and around the eyes.
- Vent: Check for pasted vent. This is basically where loose stools accumulate and seal over the vent. Although pasted vent is common in adult hens, it can be dangerous if left untreated so make sure that the hens you buy have clear healthy vents.
- Legs: Check the legs and feet for signs of injury such as sore patches or missing claws and toes.