What the heck is chicken math?


Chicken math, just the sound of it makes one scratch their head in confusion! If you are new to the world of chickens, you may not have ever heard of chicken math. I am here to tell you that it is a real thing, and it does exist! Let me break it down for you; chicken math is the addition of baby chicks to your farm, in larger quantities or breeds than what was originally planned.

Chicken math happens easily when walking into the farm store and seeing the baby chicks. The little puffballs are so fluffy, and their peeping makes you want to take them home! It is hard to not look at other chicken breeds and see how beautifully feathered they are. Cinnamon Queens are a beautiful rusty red color, barred rocks have gorgeous black and white bars (stripes), Silkies are a smaller breed that looks like a fluffy feather boa, polish chickens look like they have a large father hat on their head partially covering their eyes, and who can forget Easter Eggers, they look like they have a beard and are a variety of colors. I could go on forever, as I find nearly all chicken breeds to be beautiful.

I nearly became a victim of chicken math a few weeks ago. Springtime is chick season at the farm store, and baby chicks arrive a couple of times a week. If the chicks are a week old and haven't sold, the store will dramatically reduce their price. On this particular day, I went into the farm store to buy more feed and supplies. It is important to point out that about a week prior to this, I had purchased 10 adorable baby chicks. As I wandered the store, I overheard the sales associate telling another customer that the chicks were marked down to a quarter a piece! That is a huge savings and an incredible deal! I immediately called my husband, who quickly reminded me that I have more than enough egg layers. I pleaded with him like a toddler and informed him of every logical reason I could think of as to why I should buy more chickens. The reality check was when he asked me, "How many eggs do you really want?" He was right. When these 10 baby chicks that are in the brooder at home start laying, my flock should reasonably give me 6-9 dozen eggs a week! Unless I start selling eggs, I better not add any more chickens to my flock. Since I live in the country, I am surrounded by many other farms that sell eggs. It just doesn't make sense to try and sell eggs. (At least for right now)

There are many dangers associated with chicken math if one doesn't control it or think it through. Baby chicks are tiny and don't take up much space, but they quickly get big and require much more room. The coop can quickly become over-crowed, which is very bad for the flock. More birds = more food. This is a simple equation, which is often an after-thought, but is a serious issue, nonetheless. Fun-fact, full grown hens lay eggs! Over-adding to the flock will result in an excess of eggs. Consider the pitfalls of chicken math before falling victim to it.

I am adding a few photos of my beloved Easter Eggers. Their beards are so adorable!