Eggs? eBay?

Did you know that you can order fertilized chicken eggs on eBay? Why yes you can. And you can get champion lines of fancy birds that you might not be able to get anywhere else. Yes sirrrreeeee!

I’m wanting to become the Maran chicken woman of our little bit of northwestern Ohio and I have been having a lot of trouble finding anyone around with pullets or even mature birds of the varieties that I want to raise. I want the blues and black copper Marans, the wheaten Marans and the splash Marans. I will probably not be raising the Cuckoo variety, even though I have 5 hens of that variety. (They are a little too common… well, you can get them through the hatcheries and I think they are too easily confused with Barred Rocks….so we will keep them in our free range flock for their beautiful rich dark eggs for our egg customers!)

So in my searches online… I discovered that you can get great champion line eggs on eBay!!! Yeah!!! eBay!!! One of my favorite places to shop!

Well, I will admit, I was a little skeptical. I mean, eggs? In the mail? I kinda get chicks… they have been doing that forever, and there is something about a box that cheeps and has air holes and is clearly looking like something you have to be careful with, but a box of eggs looks just like, oh a box of rocks or books or whatever else that get flung and tossed around in the mailstream.

Nearly everyone of the sellers had a little caveat… they ship a couple extra eggs just in case one is not viable, or if one or two get smushed in transit. And if the whole batch goes south, they will ship another batch. Now once they arrive in perfect shape, they have no guarantees on hatching, but they also give you their hatch rate success and nearly all were 80 to 90 percent hatch. Sounds good to me.

I got my first batch of eggs last week. My banty chick eggs. All 18 of them. I paid for 12 and the kind lady sent 6 extra! Wow… that was nice. And everyone was carefully packed and not a single one was broken. I candled them last night at one week and they are pretty much all looking good except 2 of them. 2 are looking a little clear and possibly not fertilized. But, it might just be they are still a little young. Still, 16 good eggs is 4 more than I paid for! And the banties are fancy Belgian Mille Fluer birds that I’ve not seen ANYONE selling or breeding or anything.

There are a couple Maran breeders, but mostly just the black copper marans that Martha Stewart raves about. And every time I tried to get either day olds or pullets, they would sell out of their very limited stock. And the day old straight run birds were $5 to $10 EACH and the pullets were $15 – $20 a bird!! And they were nothing special birds… no champion lines, just backyard bred fancy chickens.

Through eBay, I was able to get my eggs for just a wee bit more than a dollar a egg! I got 24 eggs for $32 and that included shipping. If I get say even a 80% hatch rate, I’m going to be way further ahead then if I bought pullets or day olds! And I get the fancy bred birds and birds that are not available in my area. Great for selling! Great for raising!

I was really impressed on how nicely they were wrapped. Very carefully, each one double bubble wrapped and then the whole box was wrapped in stuffed papers and shredded paper. Very nice. I am pretty excited. 21 days… even less for my banties! By the first of September or so, I should have a mess of little baby birds!!! Like 40 or more! Shesh… I am not a cat lady, I’m a chicken lady in the making!

Aren’t the Marans eggs beautiful? They are so delightfully dark and stunning. I love the ones that have dark brown speckles. So very pretty. If I didn’t need all my eggs right now, I think I would go and blow out a few of the finest looking ones and save them in a little basket or something. They are that pretty to me.

I borrowed my neighbor’s incubator for this load of chicks… and it’s almost full! They got a set of Jersey Giant eggs to hatch out… so there is just a little bit more room for their batch. They are supposed to arrive tomorrow! I was going to get the egg turner inset for their incubator so we can share it and not have to turn the eggs, but I’m not sure all the eggs would fit! So I made these little cardboard corrals for them to set in, open on the bottom, just a little strip to keep them slightly together. It makes hand turning really quick. Only takes a minute or two. I have the incubator right on the dining room table so that we can all check and turn eggs through the day. They say a mother hen turns her eggs up to 90 times a day! Thank goodness that only 3 times will make your eggs hatch strong. I try to do it at least 3 times, but usually I make it to 5 or 6 times. Just whenever I pass by and have a few minutes, I’ll check the temp and humidity and then turn everyone a third of a turn.

Only a couple more weeks!!! I just love to see them hatch, it’s just amazing. Will definitely get some good video this time… lots of opportunities for sure!!!

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About Mobymom

the banjo player for Deepwater Bluegrass, and the editor of as well as the main graphic designer of the Westvon Publishing empire. She is a renaissance woman of many talents and has two lovely daughters and a rehab mobile home homestead to raise.


Eggs? eBay? — 2 Comments

  1. i miss you also. i look forward to your daily posts. i envy you your venture into farming and homemaking. i think you inspire people to step out and take a chance. i hope you and all of your “girls” are doing ok.