Homesteading, Organic Gardening, How to Farm, Preparedness, Self-Reliance
Last month I bought 39 chicken, 10 turkey, and 5 goose eggs plus got a bonus 4 white runner duck eggs from one seller. The hard lesson I learned was the USPS hires a lot of imbicles. The first 3 packages arrived a day early before I had time to contact the PO and tell them I needed packages held and our usual mailman had the day off so his replacement threw (and I do mean threw) the boxes on the truck and when he got to our place he pulled into my mom's driveway instead of mine and was going to leave the boxes sitting on the doorsteps in 20+ degree weather. I happened to go around the corner just as he opened the back of the truck and tossed the boxes from the front to the back, then as he scanned each one he threw it off to the side. One of the boxes was clearly marked FRAGILE in big black letters on a white box all over it top bottom & all 4 sides and somewhere between WA and here someone set a bigger heavier package on top of it and crushed the box and 3 of 5 Royal Palm Turkey eggs. Needless to say as of right now of 39 chicken eggs only 6 had yolks that remained intact and hatched the rest when I candled them had broken yolks, of 10 turkey eggs only one of the 7 that didn't get crushed had a yolk that didn't get broken, the 4 duck eggs have broken yolks and the jury is still out on the 5 goose eggs I'll find out next week if they survived or not (I can't tell when I candle them) they looked viable but as of right now I'm not holding my breath.
I did call the USPS and filed a complaint but because hatching eggs aren't allowed to be insured they aren't going to do anything except tell me how terribly sorry they are, the first woman I talked to was very shocked to find out that eggs can't be insured so the people I bought from don't garrantee them and won't replace them, but the local Post Master called me about the driver throwing the boxes around and when I told him they were clearly marked Fragile & Fragile Hatching eggs he wasn't very happy with the driver so he was going to find out who it was that day and give him a good talking to about how to handle fragile packages and that DOES NOT include throwing them around or leaving them out in the cold.
Yesterday I ordered replacement turkey eggs so I have to call the PO and tell them they are due to arrive monday and to hold them and the woman I bought them from is also going to mark them hold at PO.
Right now I've got 3 Welsummers, 1 Black Splash & 1 Blue Splash Cochins, and a Blue Orpington. If I'm really lucky next week I'll have 1 Blue Palm turkey and 4 Sebastipol & 1 Buff Geese - but I'm not going to hold my breath on these hatches.
The last 10 eggs of 16 to arrive were still in the incubator - 6 candled as yolks still intact but infertile, they arrived a week after the ones with the broken yolks so when I placed those in I marked them with a red sharpie X so I would know those were due to hatch later than the first batches, these were my Orpingtons and they started hatching yesterday and so far 2 have hatched 1 is pipped and the other 7 candle as viable. Huge difference between mailmen and they way they handle their packages, these 16 were delivered by my usual mailman and he delivered right to my door and was extremely careful in his handling of both of the boxes.
Shipped eggs seem to be very hit or miss. A lot depends on the individuals handling the boxes and which hubs they go through. It's a risk. Most couriers (like USPS, FedEx, etc) don't give a rip about how boxes are handled. You'd be pretty shocked if you were to see how your shipments are handled.
It also really depends on how the eggs are packaged (although in some cases it wouldn't matter how carefully they were packed). Were the air cells detached on the eggs that weren't broken?
I got 24 Ancona duck eggs in the mail 2 weeks ago. They were shipped from FL to WA. 5 of 24 were broken, but if the seller had packaged the eggs individually, I don't think any of them would have been broken. Still, I was pretty happy with those numbers.
Christine on most of them yes the yolk and the air sack were both broken. I ended up with 8 chicks total 3 Welsummers, 2 Splash Cochins, 2 Blue Orpingtons, & 1 Lavender Orpington. the goose eggs & the 1 turkey egg aren't due to hatch until this weekend so I won't know until then if they managed to survive.
The issues with all the eggs I bought were squarely on the USPS they couldn't have been packaged any better than they were. I know from experience just how badly some of the couriers handle fragile packages.
I got 5 more Royal Palm Turkey eggs today and had called ahead last friday and told them I needed to package held at the PO, the Post Master passed the word to my carrier and he put the box aside but as soon as he left to do the alternate route he was doing today the woman that was filling in for him loaded it on her truck and delivered it, she didn't even have the courtesy to bring it to the door she left it at the box and tipped it on it's side to put it between the 2 mailboxes - this with it clearly marked on 3 sides this side up and on 2 sides Avoid heat,cold, shaking, & x-rays fertile hatching eggs, the Post Master wasn't too impressed when I called him to complain that I had called and the call was ignored, he told me he knew that my usual carrier had seperated them with intentions of leaving them for me to pick up, so it had to have been the replacement that took it upon herself to load them anyway.
I guess the only way to avoid problems would be to buy live chicks but I like the anticiaption from hatching my own.
So frustrating! Even with live birds there's no guarantee. I bought five adult Seramas last September. They were delivered a day late AND they weren't held at the Post Office for pick up like they were supposed to be.