cull/hatch time

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by 3goodeggs, Dec 3, 2011.

  1. 3goodeggs

    3goodeggs pays attention sporadically

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    I am not sure this is the right place to post these questions , but...
    I have 22 hens starting their third year soon.
    Egg production was not very robust last year, and I expect it to be even lower this year.

    I have Buff Orpingtons, and even though they are sweet ladies, they are broody 3/4 of the year. I was thinking about culling the non layers and letting the good layers hatch out a clutch of chicks.
    However, I have a Australorp/buff orp mix rooster, so who knows what I will get beside something pretty to look at.
    So, here are my questions :
    Do I expect to just get more chicks who will become broody orpingtons?

    Should I bother hatching any of their eggs?

    Or, should I just try to buy some eggs from here and slip them under one of the perpetually broody BO's?
    Will they accept eggs from different sources?

    Or, should I order sexed females from Ideal and hope a broody mom will take them?

    Also, $ is tight, so I would rather get good news on the Australorp gene making everything better. [​IMG]
     
  2. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Chicken Obsessed

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    If money is tight, I'd just let the broodies hatch out some chicks. I've never had an Australorp, but have heard that they're good layers. And aren't they pretty good sized? That's a plus, because so are your BOs, so you could butcher your excess roosters and they'd actually have some meat on them. A dual-purpose flock. That's exactly what I would like to have here. Unfortunately, I didn't figure that out until I acquired a brahma roo from a neighbor. So, when I rotate out my current hens, I'm going to look for larger breed pullets. My 1 1/2 year old BO didn't even go broody until this fall, and by then it was too late. I only have one coop, and it wouldn't be big enough to house all the chickens if they'd have all hatched. I'm hoping for spring...
     
  3. al6517

    al6517 Real Men can Cook

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    You sure can hatch out some more chicks for layer use out the stock you have and instead of culling, why not just break your broody's when they come in season. it's easier than breeding and culling for years to breed out the broodiness. There are 1 or 2 very good broody cures out there.
     
  4. 3goodeggs

    3goodeggs pays attention sporadically

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    They are going to be laying less just because they are all the same age and slowing down. (Also, I have a suspicion that I have a couple that rarely lay ...never if ever.)

    I have not had any luck using the methods of breaking them that I have found here. I can stop them for a week or two, then they start right back at it.

    I was going to color vent a few hens at a time, put some form of zip tie coding on them and figure out my good layers and leave them be.
    I need to hatch a few each year just to always have some new layers.
    Will I have to worry about in breeding eventually?
     
  5. al6517

    al6517 Real Men can Cook

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    Quote:I see your plan it's makes good sense what your doing, I wouldn't worry at all about inbreeding. If your birds are Hatchery stock they have many other breeds and mixes in them for you not to have to worry about the inbreeding issue. Vent coloring is a good way to make a better choice as to who is doing what and when. You seem to have it all worked out, good luck to you.
     

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