How Do Our Ducklings and Goslings Actually Get To You?December 03, 2010
The logistics involved in getting our ducklings and goslings to you are fascinating. But first I want to give you a little history.
At this point the Bird Shippers of America was formed by mail order hatcheries and associated companies and customers. A lobbyist was hired and we made some headway. But the situation continued to deteriorate. It was so bad in the spring of 2005 that it changed from week to week on where we could mail our birds. We could take orders but we never knew if we could mail there on hatch day. Luckily in the fall of 2006 FedEx signed a contract with the USPS to haul day-old poultry on their planes. FedEx took this very seriously and I was soon visited by three national FedEx managers to better understand the hatchery business and ensure the system they set up would work. Since that time, shipping has been very consistent and relatively trouble free.
FedEx has a Day Turn and a Night Turn. Day Turn are those birds going by Priority mail. They leave early in the morning and are sent to one of two FedEx sorting centers for live poultry: Oakland by truck or Memphis by plane. At this hub they are sorted and transferred to the plane going to your nearest, major airport and usually arrive by late afternoon Tuesday.
Once they arrive at the destination airport, FedEx transfers the birds back to the USPS. Sometimes the USPS distributes from the airport post office and other times they are transferred to a regional distribution center. That evening and early the next morning the USPS has trucks taking the mail to all the individual post offices in the area. Most arrive at your local post office between 4:00am and 8:00 Wednesday morning. Some larger post offices have a second delivery later in the day.
You can always drop by your local post office to learn their procedure but 99% of the time they will phone you early that morning to ask you to come get your birds. It is better for you to go pick them up so your birds get water and food as soon as possible – and don't travel with your mailperson all day before they deliver your mail. Make sure you give the hatchery the most appropriate phone number for you to be contacted in the morning.