It’s time for a Chicken Chat! Our goal is help educate all of our friends about backyard poultry. We’re here today to talk about one of the questions that we hear most frequently at Oak Ridge Feed when it comes to starting or expanding your flock. And it’s an important one! The answer can have a big impact on the production and general composition of your flock.
“What is the difference between pullets and straight run?”
Let’s start with Pullets. What does that mean?
What is a pullet?
Pullets are immature chicks that have already been sexed. This means that the hatchery has checked the chicks and selected only those that are female. When you go to your local feed store (hopefully you come see us at Oak Ridge Feed!), you purchase a pullet – you are bringing home a female chick – a hen. This makes a big difference if your goal is to maximize your flock’s egg production. The more hens you have, the more eggs your flock will lay, and the more your family can enjoy. They are typically cost a little more at your feed store.
Now on to Straight Run.
What does straight run mean?
Straight run is a random distribution of chicks. They have not been sexed to determine the gender. They are sold ‘as hatched’. So if you purchase 6 chicks, you could have 0-6 hens and/or 0-6 roosters. If you get a large number of chicks, they usually even out to approximately 50% hens and 50% roosters. For smaller backyard poultry orders, the ratio of hens to roosters can vary greatly. They also typically cost a little less at your feed store.
Now you know! The next time you call us – or your local feed store – give your new knowledge and terminology a try! We’re excited to chat chickens with you.