A few questions about mating

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by ForeverFree, Jul 15, 2011.

  1. ForeverFree

    ForeverFree Out Of The Brooder

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    I have a rooster, he's about 3 months old. My family and I are planning on having some chickies. :)
    I read online that hens will only hatch fertilized eggs in the spring, is this true? If so, what part of spring do the hens start laying fertilized eggs? Is it all season?
    Also, I need to know some warning signs that the rooster will start mating.
    And the pullets haven't started laying yet, which means they're not fertile yet, right?
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2011
  2. lynn1961

    lynn1961 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have hens that just hatched this past week, even though it has been so hot here (105 degrees) they are able to do what nature intended for them to do.
    Usually cockrels can start mating at about 4 to 6 months, depends on the breed. The cockrels start testing the water so to say, by chasing the hens and grabbing their neck feathers, it takes them a bit to get it figured it all out and they need a willing hen. If your little rooster is trying to crow, mating will not be far behind.
    The hens will lay fertile eggs as long as there is a rooster with them. I have noticed that the ertility seems to decline in the hot weather.
     
  3. ForeverFree

    ForeverFree Out Of The Brooder

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    Quote:Oh okay, thank you!
    But another thing: none of the pullets starting laying, yet. So they're not fertile yet, right?
     
  4. StrayMagnet

    StrayMagnet Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We have a Stray chicken that has adopted us,, we knew she visited every day, but I figured she came to eat then went whever it is she lives., I had no earthly idea she was spending her Time under my side porch. but our weather has been in the high 90's with the heat index over 100. and She suprised me with 10 Lil chicks saturday!. I had no clue she had laid eggs. I know nothing of chickens. and would joke about getting chickens but never thought i'd have them. but now I have 13. as out of 12 egs 11 hached.. 10 on late friday the 8th. I disoverd them Sat the 9th.. then a late bloomer hatched on Monday the 11th.,

    so even thou this weather has been brutal she laid 12 eggs and hatched 11.
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2011
  5. pgpoultry

    pgpoultry Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Eggs can generally only be fertile when there ARE eggs. Hens can store sperm in their bodies for a few weeks, so a pullet who has been mated can start to lay fertile eggs theoretically from the outset.

    As for when chicks can be hatched....hens tend to go broody in spring to summer, but I have had hens whp have been broody and who have hatched chicks throughout the year,
     
  6. ForeverFree

    ForeverFree Out Of The Brooder

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    Quote:I'm scared that I'm going to crack an egg, and a baby's gonna come out. How will I know when she's going to lay fertilized eggs?
     
  7. ForeverFree

    ForeverFree Out Of The Brooder

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    York, PA
    Quote:Aww such a cute story!
    Are you keeping the chickies?
     
  8. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    Quote:If the cockerel is mating the hens, most or all eggs should be fertile. Fertilization happens in the hen a few days before the egg is laid. For a baby chick to develop, the egg has to be incubated (kept continuously around 100F) for three weeks after it is laid. You won't crack an egg and find a chick, ever, if you collect all the eggs every day, or even two or three days. There are two ways to tell whether an egg is fertile: incubate it, or crack it open. See here:

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=16008
     
  9. BoltonChicken

    BoltonChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    none of the pullets starting laying, yet. So they're not fertile yet, right?

    Right. No eggs, no fertility, just like humans.

    You won't crack an egg and find a chick, ever, if you collect all the eggs every day, or even two or three days.

    And there you have it!

    [​IMG]
     
  10. Gypsy07

    Gypsy07 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My chickens lay fertilised eggs all year round, and I hatch healthy chicks from them all year round. Scotland's temperatures aren't as extreme as lots of areas of the US, but in case you're wondering, the extremes of temperature were roughly -14c in winter and 24C in summer this last year.
     

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