best hatch rate: incubator or sitting hen?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by technodoll, Dec 6, 2009.

  1. technodoll

    technodoll Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,265
    13
    191
    Aug 25, 2009
    Quebec, Canada
    Just wondering what your opinions and thoughts are on this:

    Does an incubator do a better job at hatching fertilized eggs than a broody (sitting) hen?

    Does a hen know the "right" time to turn eggs and keep them at the right temp to maximize chick development and successful hatching?

    Seems to me that nature would know better than advanced technology and machines but I'd still love to hear what your experiences have been like!

    [​IMG]
     
  2. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

    30,361
    150
    446
    May 14, 2008
    North Phoenix
    My Coop
    Hens have to do a better job.... but there isn't a hen as big as a Dickey or a Sportsman... [​IMG]

    But I hear Brinsea is coming out with a new "contact" incubator that simulates the hen
     
  3. Marlinchaser

    Marlinchaser Chillin' With My Peeps

    4,943
    10
    231
    Oct 18, 2007
    MERRY LAND
    I think a unbothered hen would do best, under Ideal situation, but lots of things can throw them off. If not seperated other hens may bully thier way onto the nest, then leave it unattended after laying thier egg, I have had hens leave nest then decide to go back to a different nest box, etc.... then again with incubator if you loose power, someone accidentally unplugs etc...
     
  4. technodoll

    technodoll Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,265
    13
    191
    Aug 25, 2009
    Quebec, Canada
    Of course I mean if the hen was in an ideal situation (secluded, safe nest with warm ambient air, no distractions, plenty of food and water, etc).

    I do see the advantages to an incubator (no waiting for hen to go broody, you can set many eggs, etc) but head-to-head comparison is what I'm curious about - thanks for your comments! [​IMG]
     
  5. Marlinchaser

    Marlinchaser Chillin' With My Peeps

    4,943
    10
    231
    Oct 18, 2007
    MERRY LAND
    Quote:Then I would vote for the hen.
     
  6. neferset

    neferset Chillin' With My Peeps

    748
    2
    131
    Aug 23, 2009
    Western North Carolina
    Hen. In the warm spring months, we get our highest hatch rates from undisturbed broody hens.
     
  7. The Sheriff

    The Sheriff Overrun With Chickens

    11,140
    144
    321
    Jun 17, 2009
    Northern CA
  8. technodoll

    technodoll Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,265
    13
    191
    Aug 25, 2009
    Quebec, Canada
    I think all I can ever afford is a broody hen, LOL!

    [​IMG]
     
  9. The Sheriff

    The Sheriff Overrun With Chickens

    11,140
    144
    321
    Jun 17, 2009
    Northern CA
    OOps
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 6, 2009
  10. Chic Chick

    Chic Chick Chillin' With My Peeps

    337
    1
    131
    Dec 30, 2008
    East Central Alberta
    Quote:LOL then get yourself a few silkies hens and they will do the job for you. I have a 7 month old silkie thats sitting on a nest due to hatch at Christmas [​IMG]
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by