Intended U.S. placements of broiler pullet chicks for the hatchery supply flock for April 2014 were 6,710,000, an 8-percent increase when compared with the 6,222,000 pullet chicks placed in April 2013, according to the “Chickens and Eggs” report issued last week by USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS).

The April 2014 pullet chicks combined with the previous eight months gives a 7-to-15-month cumulative total of 61,366,000 hens in November 2014. The 61,366,000 cumulative potential pullet placements represent a 2-percent increase when compared with the 59,994,000 hens in November 2013.

U.S. Broiler-Type Hatchery Supply Flock Pullet Chicks Hatched/Cumulative Potential Placements
Pullet Chicks Hatched Potential Placements, Cumulative 7-15 months earlier
2012 2013 2014 2012 2013 2014
–000– -%- –000– -%- –000– -%- –000– -%- -000- -%- -000- -%-
January 6,673 102 6,303 94 6,470 103 64,111 102 60,874 95 60,546 99
February 7,025 96 7,156 102 7,239 101 63,679 101 60,656 95 60,850 100
March 6,753 96 6,589 98 6,790 103 63,323 100 61,094 96 61,214 100
April 6,524 93 6,222 95  6,710  108 63,209 99 61,342 97 61,457 100
May 7,472 97 6,565 101 62,941 98 60,934 97 61,385 101
June 6,800 94 7,011 103 62,557 97 60,676 97 61,444 101
July 6,071 94 6,569 108 61,937 96 60,591 98 61,524 102
August 7,338 101 7,131 97 61,566 96 60,370 98 61,772 102
September 6,686 100 6,911 103 60,870 96 60,054 99 61,496 102
October 6,265 99 6,231 99 60,412 95 59,843 99 61,225 102
November 6,767 98 7,215 107 60,492 95 59,994 99  61,366  102
December 6,668 103 6,669 100 60,731 95 60,221 99
Annual Total 81,042 98 81,572 101 62,144 97 60,554 97
Source: Chickens and Eggs NASS/USDA

Also, in the current issue of “Chickens and Eggs,” NASS reported that the actual number of layers in the broiler-type hatching egg flock on May 1, 2014 was 53,478,000 hens, essentially unchanged from the 53,262,000 hens on May 1, 2013.

Note: Percentages for “pullet chicks hatched” and “potential placements, cumulative 7-15 months earlier” refer to comparisons with year earlier. Annual numbers for “potential placements, cumulative 7-15 months earlier” are annual averages, not totals for the year.

All generations of layers that would lay eggs to supply a hatchery are included: parents, grandparents, great-grandparents, pedigree, foundation, and similar are included in the data. Any pullet chicks used for research purposes, vaccine production, and specific-pathogen-free layers that are in broiler-type hatchery supply flocks are also included in the data.