Changing How I Hatch!............

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by PeepsInc, May 20, 2010.

  1. PeepsInc

    PeepsInc Songster

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    I changed my hatching practises, & have increased my success..... My friend who is a very modest guy, is a true animal expert. You can almost say he specialises in chickens. The guy just amazes me some times. Anyways, He keeps his mongrel hens broody & hatching eggs all summer. The key is not to let them hear the chick chirping. He checks them often,& pulls the eggs that are pipped & starting to zip. If their just pipped he may put the egg in the brooder for a while. If their zipping he pops the end,taps the egg a couple times,& the chick comes crawling out into his hand. Then he cleans them a bit & sticks them rite in the brooder. They fluff up super quick. & the other chicks stimulate it, to get on it's feet faster.... Once hatched he only feeds 26% protein game starter medicated for the first month.
    To start with, I always have eggs hatching. I have had a staggered hatch going for over a year straight. So I don't believe in LOCKDOWN to start out with. Just the chicks hatching tends to raise the humidity on it's own. I started taking chicks out as soon as they hatch, or as they start to zip,I pop the end, & stick them in the brooder. Each time I stick a new chick in, I drop the light a bit until it fluffs (which is fast). Sense I've been using his method, I've hatched 17 ducks 2 geese, & 32 chicken chicks, in the past few weeks. You can tell when they come out if they are one of the weak ones that would of pipped & died. Even the little duckling with a twisted leg survived. He never would of hatched, & his leg seems to be straighter than when he hatched. My chicks are much stronger & more active than they ever were leaving them in the bator. I sprinkle a little feed in the bottom of the brooder each time I add a new chick.(Game starter 26%) That stimulates the older chicks to eat then they all sleep. I have chicks in one brooder that range from an hour old to a 9 days old. After 2 weeks they move to the brooder I have in the chicken house. Once feathered I put them in a coop with a run that I move so they get fresh grass. I stand by the method,as well as the game starter 26%...... I just thought I'd share....Peace [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2010

  2. kathyinmo

    kathyinmo Nothing In Moderation

    An animal expert? Are you kidding me? That is horrible, keeping hens broody all summer. My Gosh, they need a break, and should never be allowed to sit on a nest all summer. I think that is just awful, and just plain cruel!
    I started taking chicks out as soon as they hatch, or as they start to zip,I pop the end, & stick them in the brooder. Each time I stick a new chick in, I drop the light a bit until it fluffs (which is fast).

    Maybe you have been lucky by the method you describe, but it certainly is not a good practice. Chicks NEED to work their way out. You have simply been lucky .... many experts explain why you shouldn't open the bator, but you choose to anyway. You have made up your mind that this is a good practice? You .......

    Oh, never mind ..... Good luck.​
     
  3. RoosterMania

    RoosterMania In the Brooder

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    [​IMG]

    Good luck is right. OP, you're about to be flamed by PETC (People for the Ethical Treatment of Chickens) aka the ACLU (American Chicken Liberties Union). It was nice knowing you and may God be with you.
     
  4. darkmatter

    darkmatter Songster

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    Quote:PETC People Eating Tasty Chickens

    ACLU All Chickens Look Ugly
     
  5. RoosterMania

    RoosterMania In the Brooder

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    Quote:PETC People Eating Tasty Chickens

    ACLU All Chickens Look Ugly

    LOL!! [​IMG]
     
  6. gocrow77

    gocrow77 Crow's Nest

    May 13, 2009
    Central MO
    I think different practices will work for different people - after all none of our situations are exactly alike nor are our methods going to be identical. If this works for you I am glad that you felt like sharing your successful methods with others. We can all learn something new or different. I am sorry that others are getting angry over it. I wish you and you chickens continued health and success. I think knowledge and experience is something to be shared and considered, not just criticized. Best Wishes!
     
  7. PeepsInc

    PeepsInc Songster

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    NY Tri State region
    I knew my method wouldn't have a lot of fans. But it's time tested, & it works. Until you try it,Don't knock it. My friend does let the mongrels hatch & raise their own chicks at the end of the season.(He does have a heart) He's been at the chicken thing for about 50 years now. The vet has been known to contact him on several occasions for advice. I'm not looking for an argument or to defend my practises. I just wanted to share a time tested method.

    "Kathyinmo-Maybe you have been lucky by the method you describe, but it certainly is not a good practice. Chicks NEED to work their way out. You have simply been lucky .... many experts explain why you shouldn't open the bator, but you choose to anyway. You have made up your mind that this is a good practice?" .......

    I don't know the experts you speak of, but the whole lock down thing is more of a wife's tail. As the chicks hatch the water in the humidity tray evaporates at an incredible rate on it's own. That alone raises the humidity. Who raises the humidity under a hen?...... The object is to hatch as many chicks in a season as you can. Proofs in the hatching! [​IMG]
     

  8. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Songster

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    PeepsInc--I think your hatching method is very interesting. I'm fascinated by the wide range of methods that work to hatch eggs. They are incredibly resilient! And if your goal is to save as many as possible, then your method sounds like a winner.

    I tend to be one who tries to let nature do some of the choosing. I don't relish raising crippled ducklings, and I don't keep any that require help hatching. I DO sometimes help with a hatch, especially if I think the problem was my fault--a humidity issue, or leaving babies in the incubator too long and they interfered with the hatch. But I always mark those babies and never use them in my breeding program (usually I find them a new, pet-only home).

    The experts in regard to "lockdown" include (among others) Dave Holderread, who is the foremost expert on incubating and hatching waterfowl in the country. He doesn't call it lockdown, but he does recommend that the incubator be opened only to remove hatchlings every twenty-four hours. That is how they do it at their waterfowl farm, where they hatch hundreds of birds every year.

    Just to be clear, I don't think that just because Holderread says it, it must be true. I'm just answering the question as to which experts claim lockdown is good practice.

    I do practice lockdown, but not to the extent that some do. I open the incubator about twice a day once they start hatching, to remove hatched babies (I have a reason for this, explained elsewhere) and fix any problems that may be occurring. But I am careful to keep the humidity up--I raise it before opening. I have noticed that if I have pips and the humidity goes below about 50% for any reason, I end up with stuck babies. This doesn't usually kill them, but it does make the hatch take longer and more effort on my part.

    So there is both expertise and experience behind the "lockdown" theory.

    But that doesn't mean it's the only way to do it. If you're willing to help as many birds as need it, then lockdown may not be necessary for you. If it's working for you, I say go with it.

    Thanks for sharing. I love to hear different ways of doing things and what is working for others.
     

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