We ship out a lot of chicks from MacFarlane Pheasants. Our practice depends upon the time of year, and the weather.
Usually, in the spring we put about 131 chicks in each box. There are four compartments in each box, which holds up to 33 chicks. We pack the chicks tightly so they can make use of each other’s body heat to keep them warm in the colder weather. When we pack the pheasants this way, the boxes weigh around eight pounds. We ship the boxes in bundles of two or three. This helps keep boxes from getting lost in the mail. In warmer weather, we typically put fewer birds in each box. From June through August, we put about 105 chicks in each box, putting about 26 chicks in each compartment. This makes them weigh less, at only seven pounds per box.
We print all the labels from our office with a computer program called Endicia. We figure out all the orders for that week and then print out the postage. A bundle of two or three boxes only gets one label, and single boxes get their own label. We calculate the total price for shipping by weight.
Four days before the chicks ship, we send all the postage labels to the hatchery. They put all the labels on the boxes. If it’s in the colder months, they’ll also put Styrofoam panels in the top and bottoms of the boxes for insulation. We use two types of shipping: priority and express. Express is more expensive, but we use it for areas that have fewer routes, which means fewer flights. Express helps ensure that you get your chicks on time and with a low mortality.
We’ve been working on our system for a long time, and, are always looking for ways to improve. It is our goal at MacFarlane Pheasants to find the best ways to get our chicks from our farm to you!