advice for hatching?!

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Chookin gooood, Feb 9, 2013.

  1. Chookin gooood

    Chookin gooood Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hi!
    I am new to hatching my own chickens and am hoping to do so this year with a broody hen. This week i am moving 3 of my araucana birds into a new shed and therefore keeping them in for a few days to show them where to stay (i was thinking with the dark enclosure MIGHT make one of them broody). I have a few questions about the whole process of hatching:

    1) If one does go broody, is it too early? ( i live in Cumbria)

    2) After a few days of her sitting on eggs can i put more under her (build up an amount of eggs)

    3) what amount of eggs could she keep?


    I hope that made sense! Thankyou very much! :)
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2013
  2. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

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    1. Hens can hatch eggs any time of the year. As long as you have a sheltered spot for her to raise her chicks they'll be fine. Hanging a heat lamp in this area would be nice for the hen and the chicks when they start running around more and it's very cold.
    2. No. the eggs will start developing within 24 hours and continue developing for 21 days when they hatch. You can add eggs up to 24 hours after setting the first batch, but later than that you risk the hen getting up with the chicks that hatched and leaving eggs that still need a few days before they are ready. What you can do is store some eggs for hatching and replenish the stock every other day, so you always have a stash of fresh hatching eggs ready. You can store them up to 14 days, but after 7 days their viability drops significantly. Don't set dirty/cracked eggs and don't wash eggs you want to hatch.
    3. As many as she can cover comfortably.
     
  3. Chookin gooood

    Chookin gooood Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thankyou! just another question,

    Can i leave her on no eggs for a day or two until my other hens lay the amount of eggs i would like under her?will this deter her at all.

    sorry if these questions are a bit obvious!! thankyou. :)
     
  4. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

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    Some broodies would sit on thin air, but she'd be more interested if you can put some golf balls or fake eggs in the nest for her. Tip: let her sit for at least 2 days and check if she sleeps in the nest box as well before giving her eggs to hatch. Just to be sure she really is broody.
     
  5. Chookin gooood

    Chookin gooood Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thankyou! so im guessing she will just sit and sit till there is a chick. Thanks for all your advice! :)
     
  6. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

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