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Broody Australorp

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
I have a broody Australorp who's been on the nest for a week now. I have a 20 week old RI Red rooster. I assumed that she went broody because the eggs were fertilized. As I have read, that is not always the case. She had 20 eggs under her. I held them all under a flashlight but didn't notice any embryos. It is difficult because of the brown eggs of an Australorp and the green eggs of my EE's. They aren't very transparent. How do you tell if an egg has been fertilized without breaking them open? I cooked four of the 20 she was laying on and did not notice any bullseye. The rooster hasn't been leaving the coop much either. They generally roam free.
post #2 of 6
At a week of incubation you should see blood vessels forming. A hen will go broody regardless of whether she was mated, I think your rooster might be too young yet, is he 20 weeks as well.
Chickens, muscovy ducks, turkeys, donkeys , goats, dogs, fish, parakeets, a parrot, and a cat.

Chickens and dogs are healing to the soul.

I brake for squirrels.

Some of my birds.
http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/my-wisconsin-flock
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Chickens, muscovy ducks, turkeys, donkeys , goats, dogs, fish, parakeets, a parrot, and a cat.

Chickens and dogs are healing to the soul.

I brake for squirrels.

Some of my birds.
http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/my-wisconsin-flock
Reply
post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 
The rooster is about 20-22 weeks old. The hens started laying in November. The seven of them alternate laying. I've only had seven eggs once. Typically get four a day which I was surprised that they even laid eggs this time of the year. Can you tell after a week by holding them up to a light?
Edited by toconnor318 - 1/16/16 at 7:52pm
post #4 of 6
I use a toilet paper tube roll slipped over or set on top of a flash light, I hold the egg on the toilet tube end in a dark room, the darker the egg the harder to see development, a clear egg with just a yolk is not developing, blood vessels or a solid dark egg means development, she probably can't properly cover that many eggs, I would candle them and if any are viable you might want to only give her back some, if she can't cover them all they all could be lost because the eggs would be moved around and most will spend time not covered properly which could kill them all. Have you seen the rooster mating with her or even any of them yet, some are late bloomers.

Most first year layers will lay through their first winter, not as consistently as they will in a few months but most will lay something.
Chickens, muscovy ducks, turkeys, donkeys , goats, dogs, fish, parakeets, a parrot, and a cat.

Chickens and dogs are healing to the soul.

I brake for squirrels.

Some of my birds.
http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/my-wisconsin-flock
Reply
Chickens, muscovy ducks, turkeys, donkeys , goats, dogs, fish, parakeets, a parrot, and a cat.

Chickens and dogs are healing to the soul.

I brake for squirrels.

Some of my birds.
http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/my-wisconsin-flock
Reply
post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the information. There definitely was no sign of development. I checked them all again. I have not noticed the rooster mounting any hens but he has become a little protective of the broody hen. He doesn't leave her, he stays in the coop. Should I discourse her from being broody or just let her do her thing? I don't want to break her of it. I also don't want her to wither down to nothing.
post #6 of 6

Candling eggs can take some practice...and is difficult if not impossible with dark brown and especially blue/green eggs.

 

 

First Hatch - I candled on day 7-10-14-18:

Day 7 - didn't see much but the air cells, which I outlined with a pencil every time I candled, maybe some veining and lumps..maybe moving...I was very disappointed.

Day 10 - could definitely see veins and some movement...maybe some clears and blood rings.

Day 14 - saw much more definition of shape, movement and realized what I had seen the previous times. Clears and blood ring more obvious.

Day 18 - pulled the now very obvious clears and blood rings. Viable chicks almost filled egg and wasn't as much movement.

 

Knew much better what to look for the next time I incubated. It just takes some practice and experience.

Candle well after sunset or in a dark windowless room, I used a cardboard template with a hole cut to fit into a utility light shade with a 60watt bulb. Also used a very bright flashlight and just my hand in a windowless room after I got better at it.

 

Seeing if cock/erel is getting the job done can be determined when breaking eggs to eat by looking at the blastoderm on the yolk.

Here's some examples: http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/16008/how-to-tell-a-fertile-vs-infertile-egg-pictures

 

If your eggs are not fertile and/or you can't get any fertile eggs.

You'll need to decide if you want her to hatch out some chicks, and how you will 'manage' it.

Do you have or can you get some fertile eggs?

Is the weather is amendable? I let  broody hatch last winter but I had an excellent setup and was around to monitor all the time, it worked out OK but I would not do it again.

Do you have the space needed? She may need to be separated by wire from the rest of the flock.

Do you have a plan on what to do with the inevitable males? Rehome, butcher, keep in separate 'bachelor pad'?

 

If you decide to let her hatch out some fertile eggs, this is a great thread for reference and to ask questions.

It a long one but just start reading the first few pages, then browse thru some more at random.

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/496101/broody-hen-thread

 

 

 

If you don't want her to hatch out chicks, best to break her promptly.

 My experience went like this: After her setting for 3 days and nights in the nest, I put her in a wire dog crate with smaller wire on the bottom but no bedding, set up on a couple of 4x4's right in the coop and I would feed her some crumble a couple times a day. 

 

I let her out a couple times a day and she would go out into the run, drop a huge turd, race around running, take a vigorous dust bath then head back to the nest... at which point I put her back in the crate. Each time her outings would lengthen a bit, eating, drinking and scratching more and on the 3rd afternoon she stayed out of the nest and went to roost that evening...event over, back to normal tho she didn't lay for another week or two.

Water nipple bottle added after pic was taken.

Great article on VENTILATION, one of THE MOST IMPORTANT aspects of coop design.

Fantastic treatise to help decide how much SPACE your chickens need.

 

Chicken math is not just 'addition'...but also should include Division, Multiplication and especially Subtraction!!!

 

Quoting centrarchid:

"Make every effort to understand your chicken's biology and the environment that supports it."

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Great article on VENTILATION, one of THE MOST IMPORTANT aspects of coop design.

Fantastic treatise to help decide how much SPACE your chickens need.

 

Chicken math is not just 'addition'...but also should include Division, Multiplication and especially Subtraction!!!

 

Quoting centrarchid:

"Make every effort to understand your chicken's biology and the environment that supports it."

Reply
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