I recently ordered fifteen Muscovy ducklings from Ridgway Hatchery. I was very pleased with every aspect of the transaction. Ridgway was friendly, prompt, and helpful in phone conversations and emails, and the ducklings are very healthy with nice variety. I would not hesitate to order from them again in the future.
Anyone who has had the experience of owning a business knows that no matter how hard you try, you cannot please everyone and that mistakes happen.
My personal experience with Ridgeway has been a good one. I chose to purchase my R.I. flock from Ridgeway for two reasons:
They breed their own flock. Most hatcheries are getting a new shipment of eggs from an 'egg warehouse,' not improving the flock or paying attention to egg count.
Mr. Ridgeway does.
Also, on my first order of only 25 chicks, Mr. Ridgeway himself took the time (twice!) to talk with me and answer all my questions. I knew I was a small peanut on his customer list but he treated me as though I was just as important as anyone.
I knew that I took up quite a bit of their time, and having a business of our own, felt a bit guilty about it, but they stayed helpful and polite to me, both Mr. & Mrs. Ridgeway. I will say the secretary could brush up a bit on her manner of speaking with customers but she did remain helpful despite the fact I was a bit of a time consumer due to my many questions.
I give Ridgeway Hatchery a positive review.
We now have a healthy, beautiful 10 week old flock of Rhody's and 25 more coming again today...again from Ridgeway. On May 29th, 2008, OnTheGreenFarms added the following:
I also wanted to add that I did have a difficulty with a few chicks dying AFTER arrival, due to the extremely cold spell we unfortunately had when they shipped. Mrs. Ridgeway DID NOT have to do this for me, as they are not responsible after the poultry arrives, but she replaced them.
I found them very helful when I had a problem.On May 29th, 2008, OnTheGreenFarms added the following:
typo correction: I found them very HELPFUL when I had a problem.
I have a small backyard flock of chickens. This spring I ordered 10 chicks to add to our flock from a local (Vermont) farm and garden store. The farm and garden store purchased chicks from Ridgeway Hatchery distributed them.
After 3 days 9 of my 10 chicks have died. I contacted my local store who told me to contact Ridgeway directly. As a relative novice, I simply asked Mr. Ridgeway why all my chicks might be dieing. I wasn't asking for a refund or anything, it was only a $25.00 order. I just wanted to know if I was doing something wrong, had there been other reports of sick birds, could he provide any advice, etc???
His responses were extremely rude, not helpful at all. Ridgeway Hatchery has a lot to learn about customer service.
Maybe Ridgeway shipped us sick birds, maybe the local garden store mishandled them, maybe I did not care for them properly. I don't think the latter is the case as I've successfully raised chicks in the past.
My recommendation... Don't order from Ridgeway, find a different hatchery. I will never order from them again. You may or may not get sick birds, I can't be certain. What I can be certain of is this... If you run into problems you will NOT get any help from Mr. Ridgeway.
MistyMeadows Payneville, KY (Zone 7a) (4 reviews) April 4, 2006
We used to do a lot of business with Ridgway Hatcheries and praised them. Dean Ridgway retired and his son took over and the rest is as usually is with a story...son doesn't do like father does.
We planned to buy turkeys at the end of June and Ridgway knew this as we bought chickens every 2 weeks from them. We sent in a check end of May for our next batch of chickens (300 at a time). Ridgway called us and said that they had a few turkeys that they had to find a home for. We asked how many, they said 50 "and a few stragglers" "they would give us a great price and no shipping just to take them off their hands. We told them we weren't in a position to purchase them until the end of the month and they said that was fine, we could pay them then, so we said okay. This was on a Wednesday. They were going right out by air and we should have them by Thursday, is what we are told. They didn't arrive until Saturday and they sent 156. We weren't prepared for so many.
By the end of the day, we had lost over 50 of them; they appeared to be having convulsions and would flop in the air and then died. The next day another 30, the next day more. We ended up raising out 21 of those 156 chicks!
They sent us a bill for the full-price for 156, charged us shipping and took my payment I had sent for our next batch of chicks and applied it to the turkeys. (we found this out when we waited for two weeks for our chicks that never arrived).
As it turned out, the reason they died was that they had some kind of disease, a mineral deficiency that they were born with. Out of the 21 that survived, about 1/3 of them could not walk right because of whatever they were born with.
We were purchasing approx. 5000 chickens alone from them each year.
When we called them (and we have been customers for many years), they basically said "sorry bout your luck"
I say, "Nope, sorry bout your luck!" We will never buy from them again.On January 10th, 2008, MistyMeadows added the following:
Wow, just now reading this answer from Ridgeway. Too bad none of it is as stated by the company. I documented everything said at the time.
Perhaps we were one of those that slipped through the cracks, but I assure you the story as I told it is the gospel truth.
I would have no reason to lie about this, I got no gain or pleasure to write what I did.
Well, we haven't purchased from them since and don't intend to.
Sorry bout your luck!On January 10th, 2008, MistyMeadows added the following:
I thought about this all night long and I have two questions.
1) How did Ridgeway know about my posting on Dave's Garden and so soon after I posted?
2) How did Ridgeway get my name? As you can tell, I never posted my name....and let's not say that it was because he remembered the incident, to wit I would ask....with all the customers they have had in 83 years, how could he remember my name. We've always bought our chickens/turkeys in our name and not our farm name.
When we make a posting on here, does it go to the company that we have posted about?
This bothers me....I paid for a membership here. To the best of my knowledge, Ridgeway is not a member of DG.On February 13th, 2008, MistyMeadows added the following:
Blah, Blah, Blah........Company representative comment on January 28, 2008: On Apr 6, 2006 2:38 PM, Ridgway Hatchery added:
First off, I want to set the foundation straight. Both father
and son, John and Dean Ridgway, are both still managing
Now to the turkey situation, I personally did not make the phone call to Mr Packard trying "to find a home" for the
extra poults. But, I do know from 25 years of experience
at Ridgway Hatchery, that we do not say one amount and
then tack on an extra 100. I believe there must have been
a misunderstanding or miscommunication. But, what I do
know is that when I talked to Mr Packard on 6-6-05, a week
after we had shipped the birds, about the 42 turkeys he
had dead on arrival, nothing was mentioned about the total
number of birds shipped. The birds were shipped through
the United States Post Office and did not arrive until Saturday. The birds are insured and they were too long in
transit so we discussed how to place a postal insurance claim. During the same phone conversation Mr Packard
said the rest of the turkeys were "okay." I then credited his
invoice for 140 turkeys (not 156 as stated) for $138.60.
There was never any mention made about the price of
the turkeys which was $3.30 postpaid. We also placed an
insurance claim for $138.60 which we made payable to Mr Packard.
As for a mineral defiency, nothing was ever said or documented about this. We ship out thousands of turkeys
each season to growers like Mr Packard and this is the
first and only time I have ever heard this. We are a pullorum
typhoid clean hatchery and the turkey breeder is MG,
MM, and MS clean.
I sincerely regret this whole situation and, of course, the loss
of business. And I feel bad that this is still foremost in Mr Packard's mind almost one year later. But, this was one order out of many that we had shipped to your successfully. We have not stayed in business for 83 years treating customers like you
say you were treated and sending unhealthy birds, to boot!
I expected the loss of business but, not such a slanderous
On Jan 28, 2008 5:15 PM, Ridgway Hatchery added:
I am sincerely sorry that after several years you are still
thinking about the transaction. But, in my defense, I did not
lie about my recounting of the incident. I, too, had everything
documented. Including your name and business name,
which you gave to us when you ordered.
To answer your question about how I knew of the posting.
Dave's Garden allows you to post a rebuttal and I received
an e mail about the first post you made.
The second post I just happened onto after an old college
roommate was trying to get in touch with me and came up-
on this post. (how, I don't know).
I am distraught to think that this is going to be an ongoing
game of verbal volleyball.
Can't we just agree to disagree?