Best Place for Hatching eggs

Discussion in 'Chicken Breeders & Hatcheries' started by GardenDmpls, Feb 28, 2015.

  1. GardenDmpls

    GardenDmpls Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 9, 2013
    Far Rockaway, New York
    For the past two years, we have incubated eggs in my high school animal science program. The first year we ordered from My Pet Chickens and had three hatch out of twelve. The other eggs did not develop at all. What I liked was that the eggs were clearly labeled so we knew the breeds. The next year, we ordered from Meyer hatchery. Nine out of eighteen hatched. Most of the eggs developed, but several had problems with position and drowned (students did eggtopsies). Two needed assistance and did fine. One had its head turned completely backwards, but recovered quite well. Another died within a day of hatching. The hatchery told me that they could not mark the eggs as to breed, but using their pictures, the students figured out the breeds, which was better from an educational point of view.

    This year I am waiting to order, because I am worried that the freezing weather might affect the eggs in shipment. I am wondering if anyone has had experience with several hatcheries so that they could compare as to quality of packing and quality of the eggs they received. Also, has it mattered if one was closer than another? By the way, I pay for the eggs, so I can keep the chickens in my Far Rockaway New York backyard coop.



    The coop and run a few weeks ago.

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    New Chicks last spring.

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    Students practicing with stethoscopes.


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    Last edited: Feb 28, 2015
  2. dheltzel

    dheltzel Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Nov 30, 2013
    Pottstown, PA
    Welcome to BYC!!! Great work you are doing with the kids.

    Have you looked for a local breeder on Craigslist? Search for "hatching eggs", chicks, or chickens. I bet you find at least a few in close proximity.

    Also, post an appeal in your state message thread in the social forums "Where and I, where are you?". If you can avoid shipping you will save money and (usually) get a better hatch. If you explain what you want the eggs for, it's very likely someone will donate, or at least discount, the eggs, I know I would.

    Best of luck with this spring's hatch.
     
  3. GardenDmpls

    GardenDmpls Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Far Rockaway, New York
    There don't seem to be breeders in New York City, maybe because roosters are illegal. The last two years, I have tried out on Long Island, but the few I found had gone out of business or were no longer selling to the public. I will try again. The fifty percent hatch rate is about right for shipped eggs and it did give the students a chance to identify the causes by candling and by eggtopsy.

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    Last edited: Mar 1, 2015
  4. CrazyTalk

    CrazyTalk Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If they're getting as far as that, the problem isn't a shipped egg issue.

    How many do you need? If we're only talking about a dozen or so, you're better off finding a local hobby keeper - a dozen fertile eggs is like 2-3 days of laying for a typical backyard flock. I don't think you're gonna have much luck with hatcheries and such.

    Have you thought about ducks? I know Pekin ducks were a big deal in Long Island for a long time - so you may be able to find them.



    EDIT: A quick craiglist search of the long island craislist turns up nothing -which I've never seen before - there are some on staten island though.
     
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2015
  5. GardenDmpls

    GardenDmpls Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Far Rockaway, New York
    Quote: Those two drowned at hatching- one had the head under the wing, the other pipped the wrong spot and drowned.

    Quote: We did have a duck in the lab, once, but it was pretty messy and the lab wasn't a good environment for it. I don't think I would be allowed to keep a backyard duck in the city.

    Quote: I like to get the pure bred chickens so my students can see and identify different breeds that they have studied. Because of the weather, I am waiting until the week after spring break to start, and will probably go with Meyer hatchery again. At the end of the school year, the chickens go into my backyard group or I share them with a youth garden program that has started rebuilding the flock they lost due to Hurricane Sandy.
     
  6. GardenDmpls

    GardenDmpls Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 9, 2013
    Far Rockaway, New York
    Quote: The one in Staten Island is a rental for an "educational experience", with the price tag of $180. + $75. for delivery, and they take back the chicks. Not for me.[​IMG]
     

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