1 broody quit, 1 broody & a bator going, WWYD??

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by gritsar, Aug 11, 2014.

  1. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

    28,907
    115
    408
    Nov 9, 2007
    SW Arkansas
    Let me state right off the bat that I hate incubators and artificial hatching. To my way of thinking, God gave me good broody hens for a reason, I stink at incubating.

    I have run into a problem and I'm trying to get as many opinions as possible before making a decision. I had two hens brooding.

    My most reliable broody Widget (serama) has been sitting on bantam cochin eggs, Emma (LF brahma) has been sitting on breda eggs. Emma, 1st timer, had been broody for more than 3 months before I gave up on trying to break her and ordered her eggs. Both were due to hatch this Friday, the 15th. In the meantime I ended up with more breda eggs than I wanted to burden Emma with, so I grabbed a cheap incubator - Farm Innovators Model 4200 Pro Series Circulated Air Incubator with Automatic Egg Turner. The incubator eggs are due to hatch on Sunday, the 17th, I think. Since I'm not exactly sure whether I put them in on the 27th or 28th, I was going to err on the side of caution and put them on lockdown Thursday, the 14th.

    Yesterday Widget quit on me, just up and quit. When I noticed that she had been off the nest for more than four hours I grabbed up her two remaining eggs, rushed them in the house and candled them. Both eggs were viable, so I stuck in the bator while I decided what to do. Now I'm stuck with two eggs that I don't know what to do with. I have been really looking forward to more cochins and these are some of the best, from an excellent breeder.

    My problem is the cochin eggs are due to hatch the day after my incubator should go on lockdown. The way I see it I have two choices....

    1. I can leave them in the bator, remove two of the turning rails tomorrow (lockdown time for them) and lay them on the wire. The humidity won't be right for hatching, since my bator eggs won't need it to be increased until Thursday. OR...

    2. I can give them to my brahma broody, but these are tiny bantam eggs. Emma is a very large LF and she's hatching LF chicks. I am afraid that two tiny cochins will be stomped on either by Emma or her own LF chicks as they hatch at the same time. If I catch them in time I can take the two cochins from her and put them in a brooder, but I'd just have to hope she didn't hatch them in the middle of the night.

    I keep going back and forth and still can't decide which is the better choice. What would you do?

    TIA
     
  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

    63,820
    9,463
    766
    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    Hey, Lady Gritty! I share the same concerns that you have about putting bantam /small eggs under the brahma. I would use the incubator. Did you check Widget's nest? As you probably know mite infestation is one of the most common causes of a setting hen breaking. Would you like me to send a few more broodies your way? [​IMG] 'do a little dance' [​IMG]
     
  3. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

    28,907
    115
    408
    Nov 9, 2007
    SW Arkansas
    Hey Sour! Widget's nest is fine. I think it was her pesky son that caused her to give up. I had planned on moving her away from him last night anyhow and did (after she abandoned the eggs), but now she wants nothing to do with being broody on fake eggs.
    This is so unlike Widget! She's almost six years old now and her lifelong quest has always been to overpopulate the chicken world. Since a pullet - lay three eggs, go broody, kick her chicks to the curb @ six weeks, lay three eggs, repeat.

    Keith just had a wonderful idea. I do have a still air LG that I can use as a hatcher. Off to locate it and set it up.

    Thanks, but no thanks on the extra broodies. I do believe Emma is making up for all the non-broody brahmas I have had over the years (I mean seriously! In her fourth month of broodiness @ the hottest part of the year??). I have 5 week old chicks, 20 week old chicks, another crossbeak and a never-ending bathroom remodel going on. Forget the plate being full, grab me a turkey platter! [​IMG]
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by