I picked up a few more chicks last week. Some from our local feed store (ordered from a hatchery) and a few from a local guy who has some funky bantam chickens. The bantams are about the same age as the regular-sized chicks, yet they are under half the size. SO cute! It was really cool to visit the place where these chicks were hatched and cared for, meet their parents, and meet the guy behind the whole thing.
I've been contemplating how hard it is to find heritage breed animals from local sources, lately. In the case of chickens, you have to have a hatchery ship them to you or buy them from a feed store that also ordered them from a hatchery. You might be able to find some local chicks, but it's pretty hard. Believe me, I've been looking. I love to support local economy, so I always look to see if I can get something locally first. The situation of chickens makes me very sad. Maybe hatchery chicks could be healthier, I don't know. But they sure aren't treated terribly kind and that is something that is very important to me as an animal lover.
I'd love to see our country return to a small farm model, where you can run down the road and pick up some chicks from your farmer friend. These are lofty ideals, I know. But wouldn't it be so much more humane, local economy friendly, and just plain cool?