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Hen versus incubator - Page 2

post #11 of 16

Here I am - I just joined and am new at the "chicken thing".  So please be patient - I'm a newbie.  I have a "broody" hen - and at first I didn't know what was wrong with her - she chose a place in my hay aisle and just started sitting.   Didn't lay any eggs, just sat there.  Every morning I'd carry her out to the chicken pen and put her down so she would eat/drink with the rest, but then she'd be right back in the same place again, not budging until the next morning when I'd carry her out again.  I bought a chicken handbook and that's when I learned she was probably a "broody hen".  So I took a few eggs that the other hens were laying - not thinking they were fertile (the rooster is still young, the same age as the hens) - and put them under her.  Well, three hatched!!!!  In the middle of February, in PA!!!!    I asked around on some of my horse-lists and was told that the hen would keep them warm enough.  First I brought the hen and chicks into my office and put them in a dog crate, it was much warmer in there - but boy did she stink up the office!  Can't tell chickens smell that bad when they are outside  lol

So now that it's a little warmer, the family is back in the hay aisle, where I let them out of the crate during the day and shut them in at night, just in case the barn cats get interested in the chicks.  All seems to be well, so far.

ps my "flock" of chickens were hatched in an incubator - I got them all the day they hatched, and raised them in a big container with heat lamp.  So these are my first "hen raised" peeps.  Pretty neat!  And they aren't even her babies -


post #12 of 16

I am saving eggs now

So I am new to chickens. How do u save fertile eggs? I find this facintating (I have a college degree and cant spell lol ) as the hatheries must be really good at it.

post #13 of 16
Thread Starter 

Hey eichenluft ,
    Can we get some pics of the chicks?!  big_smile

post #14 of 16

I think I'm going to let my hens do the work. I figured that they know what they're doing.

post #15 of 16

Hi im new to BYC ive been breeding chickens for two years now, i find a broody very good but you cant handle the chicks, i have a rcom 20 incubator that has been very good, but although you can handle the chicks, you have lots of mess and dust,  ive got 6 sizzle silkies under a broody lavender wyandotte and 8 serama in the incubator coz i really want these little ones to be as tame as possible 




post #16 of 16
Originally Posted by Anne View Post

I use both broody hens and incubators.  I prefer broodies (usually get a higher hatch % and take care of the chicks themselves), but incubators have the advantage as far as timing and # of eggs are concerned.  Plus I really enjoy watching the eggs hatch.  wink

I have a question..I have never hatched any eggs. right now I have a silkie sitting on 3 eggs. I decided since my silkies are now in their own pen I want to let her hatch them. do eggs hatch at the same amount of time as in an incubator? She has made a nest on the floor and pushed all the bedding away and the eggs are on the bottom of the coop, will that be ok? I have 2 hens and a rooster in that pen. they were raised at 2 days old together. how can i mark them safely? thank you

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