call me stupid if you want

maxxsmommy

Songster
8 Years
Aug 24, 2011
307
0
101
Minnesota
but i am going to get a rooster soon and i have 4 hens. none are laying yet but when they do how do I know which eggs are fertile?? how can i tell??
 
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emys

Songster
11 Years
Nov 19, 2008
1,416
10
161
Idaho
Unless your rooster is defective they all will be. With only 4 hens, I would try to find an older rooster look for someone who wants to retire one from their breeding flock. (Don't forget to quarantine!) Good luck.
 

maxxsmommy

Songster
8 Years
Aug 24, 2011
307
0
101
Minnesota
ok so pretty much just assume all are fertile and leave them be? and If i want eggs for eating should i just let him mate with like 2 hens and keep the other 2 away from him?
sorry if i sound dumb, I've never had chickens up to the point of where they were laying. (my others died when they were around 4 months old due to a raccoon)...
 

Illia

Crazy for Colors
10 Years
Oct 19, 2009
16,240
213
336
Forks, WA
You can eat all the fertile eggs you want and no harm will be done. As long as they aren't under proper heat, around 98-101 degrees and proper humidity for more than 2 days, you're perfectly fine.



I know how ya feel on the raccoon issue.
 

Fowl97

Songster
10 Years
Aug 17, 2009
492
0
139
Iraq
No, you can eat fertilized eggs. they are fine to eat and taste no different than a non fertilied egg. people do it all the time
 

Nicole01

Crowing
8 Years
Mar 28, 2011
5,492
95
268
MN
You might want to add a few more hens, so your rooster is not too rough. I'd love to have a boy myself, but the hubby says no way! Maybe in a few years I'll talk him into it.
 

ChickenCanoe

Crossing the Road
Premium Feather Member
9 Years
Nov 23, 2010
30,729
22,051
937
St. Louis, MO
There's no difference in fertile or non-fertile for eating except for an extra cell(sperm).
Some people prefer fertile but really there's no difference unless they've been stored above 75 degrees for any length of time.

I agree with emys an older rooster won't be so aggressive. Young ones will ride 4 girls to death (almost) and have them cowering in the corners.

The eggs will also be fertile a couple weeks after the roo is gone.
 

Ridgerunner

Free Ranging
11 Years
Feb 2, 2009
25,270
14,631
727
Southeast Louisiana
This thread has photos and good information on how to look for the bull's eye to tell if they are fertile. If you cannot find anything on top, the bulll's eye may be hiding on the bottom of the egg. Just turn it over gently with a spoon. If most of the eggs you open are fertile, most of the ones you don't open are also fertile.

Fertile Egg Photos
https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=16008&p=6
 

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