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Priority Mail Package Carries Chickens to Cochran | Weird

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Priority Mail Package Carries Chickens to Cochran
Priority Mail Package Carries Chickens to Cochran

They came priority mail in an extra large box with holes in the top from Mt. Healthy Hatcheries, Inc. in Cincinnati, Ohio.

And they all were OK.

They being 325 day-old Rhode Island Reds and Golden Comets.

For those not in the know – that is farmer speak for chicks – red and yellow chicks that were born last Wednesday and arrived in Cochran on Thursday.

Their destination was Sandhill Feed, owned by Jack and Edna Miller of the Roddy Community.

Edna Miller said, “When we know we have some coming, we will call the post office, and tell them, and then they will call us and tell them that the chicks are there.”

And the Millers will go pick up the chicks and bring them to their store located on the Eastman Highway, next to Sandhill Grocery.

Edna Miller said, “When we get them they are like fluff balls.”

Jack Miller said, “Most of these are replacements for hens. When a hen gets to be two or three years old, they quit laying eggs, so the farmers will want to replace them.”
The Millers have sold some of the chicks as pets – though they do not dye them nor do they encourage children to handle the chicks without supervision.

Jack Miller said, “You just don't know what kind of germs you might pick up.”

Edna Miller said, “If the adult supervises the kids, and makes sure that the children wash their hands thoroughly, it would be OK.”

Jack Miller explained, “Live poultry can still carry salmonella.” Salmonella germs can cause diarrhea illness in people that can be mild, severe, or even life threatening.

Kissing and snuggling with the baby chicks is not encouraged either.

He said, “It is important to be educated about any animal or bird that you take in.”
The Millers opened the Sandhill Feed Store four years ago after moving to the Roddy Community in Dodge County from Florida.

The couple, who got married on Christmas Eve in 1967, had always had animals, and talked about, when they were living in Florida, opening up an animal feed store.

He said, “There were so many feed stores all around, that it just wasn't time.”

The couple has always had animals – everything from Peruvian Horses to peacocks to chickens to dogs.

A retired employee of GTE/Verizon, Jack Miller was an IT manager for a company in Florida before making the move to Georgia.

Both Millers said it was time.

The couple had moved to Florida from New Jersey, after Jack Miller returned home from serving in Vietnam. “We pulled up into my parents' driveway, after driving from California, and we were tired,” he said.

Edna Miller added, “All of our stuff was in the car.”

The next morning when Jack went out to the car, he noticed the radios were missing from the vehicle. “Right then and there, I knew, we were going to move to Florida. We had talked about it before. When I was in Vietnam, or before I went, where we lived was a rural area-peaceful, and then in four years, everything changed,” Jack Miller said.

Edna Miller said, “We moved, and my family followed us.”

He added, “When we first got there, it was great. We worked and it was still like we were on vacation, and everyone was so nice … it lost its southern hospitality.”

Edna Miller nodded in agreement, “It changed.”

So, the couple moved to Georgia – where, “we right in the middle of southern hospitality,” Jack Miller said.

And then, they decided after a local feed/mill store closed they would open up the shop. “My daughter and I had wanted to do this in Florida, so here we are,” Edna Miller said. Customers come from Danville, Milan, Pineview, Cochran, Dublin and “all over,” said Edna Miller, “to buy their feed.” The store stocks all sorts of pet feed and care supplies, for everything from horses, dogs, parrots, goats, rabbits and fish food.

They also come for advice, which Jack freely and warmly gives.

And for chickens.

There are 100 chickens left, and they all seem pretty happy under the glow of the special lamps in the straw field pens inside the store.

And that makes Jack and Edna Miller happy.

For more information about the chicks or the Millers, e-mail them at info@sandhillfeed.com.


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