Do you incubate for fun OR profit?/How do you justify the $$

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by happydog, Feb 6, 2011.

  1. happydog

    happydog Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 22, 2009
    Western NC
    I'm getting ready to buy my first incubator and obsessively reading this forum. I see lots of you buying, using, and recommending incubators. A lot of them can incubate hundreds of eggs and are really expensive. Or some people have 4 tabletop models. I'm wondering if everybody on here is a serious breeder or do you just do it for fun and don't mind spending money on a hobby?

    Last year I got an assortment of poultry for our brand new farm and now that they're all starting to lay I thought I'd hatch some of their eggs. But wow, good quality incubators with turners and all are expensive! Now I'm looking at spending a couple hundred dollars and I'm wondering how do you guys justify it? Are you making money doing this or is it just a fun, really expensive hobby?

    I guess I'd feel a better about buying an incubator if I really could make enough money to pay for the thing. And the thermometer, hygrometer, turners, etc etc etc, lol. In fact, it'd be great if I could make enough to justify springing for a cabinet incubator! [​IMG] Just curious how you justify spending the money.

    Does it really pay for itself? If so, would you mind sharing how you're doing it?
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2011
  2. mississippifarmboy

    mississippifarmboy collects slightly damaged strays

    With most people here I would think it's more a hobby. I personaly consider it a hobby, but do make a bit of money sometimes. I am spending $400.00 on another used incubator this week. But I hatch out at least 300 - 400 birds a year. I'm working with several breeds that I have to hatch out lots of birds to be able to have enough to cull for future breeders to improve the breeds. We also sell chicks and point of lay hens and extra cockrells for processing to a lot of local folks.
    We've had as many as three big cabinet incubators and as little as one small styrofoam incubator. How much you can justify spending is a personal choice.
    I call mine a hobby because my main love is chickens. If I didn't make a dime I'd still do it. [​IMG]
  3. gumbii

    gumbii Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 7, 2010
    bell gardens, ca
    yep... more of a hobby... hobbies are expensive no matter what it is... this is my secondary hobby... i don't want to tell you about my first... i could've been rolling in a mercedez if i didn't have my first hobby... LOL...
  4. columbiacritter

    columbiacritter Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 7, 2008
    Scappoose Oregon
    if you think you can make money raising chickens and still having fun, you're going to be very disappointed. My family raised chickens and pheasants for profit and the amount of work it took to break even let alone make enough to justify it took all the fun away. I've talked to other people who say they make money, but they generally don't consider their time as an expense. If someone gave you all the equipment, incubators, brooders, grow out pens, feeders, waters, coops, etc. for free, then yeah you'd be able to turn a profit with fewer birds, but factor in all those costs..........................................

    Right now my husband is venturing into show quality birds so we're burning through a lot of money for just the enjoyment of showing them. Someday, hopefully.
  5. Winggedheart

    Winggedheart Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 18, 2010
    Defiantly a hobby for me, much as my parents wish we didn't have so many birds. [​IMG] Lol

    As for a incubator, I just ordered a turbofan hova-bator from Jeffers, and though it's on back-order ( [​IMG] ) it should get here before long. I already got the automatic turner in for it, and all total, (with shipping) I barely scratched 100 dollars.
  6. SteveH

    SteveH Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 10, 2009
    West/Central IL
    I've borrowed the term hobbit [ hobby + habit ] to label my desire to incubate . [​IMG]

    I tell myself that if I keep hatching chicks , and strive to breed and hatch something that will have a demand , I can sell them at a price that will cover expences and maybe a bit more . I'm gullable enough to believe that lie [​IMG]
  7. sonjab314

    sonjab314 Constant State of Confusion

    May 15, 2010
    I have many hobbies and there is only one of them that costs me more....sewing. One of my machines costs me over $2000.00 (not a typo). But chicks by far are totally cuter and more cuddly [​IMG] So yes, this is a hobby for me. I have hatched for other people and didnt charge them a dime (other than a few chicks that I hatched for them). I just like to do it.
  8. justtoni44

    justtoni44 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 13, 2010
    The eggs I sell covers food.....................period
    I already had a barn so not much investment in coops.
    Have gotten all of my equiptmant free from watching craigs list
    and 6' dog kennel panels as well.
    I sell some purbred pullets and a few hatching eggs.but this is definately a hobby for me.
    Just try to take the bite out of my costs.......
    As the advertisement says,,,,,,,,,,,,rewards from my flock, priceless........[​IMG]
    I get good excersize, have someone looking forward to see me every morning, have great conversations in the barn,
    get to enjoy the smiles of the folks purchasing my rainbow eggs.....and the list goes on.
  9. aprophet

    aprophet Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 12, 2010
    chesapeake Va.
    Quote:I consider my time as a expense but the part most do not realize is I do not have to answer to a boss I work when I want to not when I am told I have to I like being around birds Bosses who do not have a clue as to what they want need not so much LOL I could consider it a hobby but then I could,nt make money at it [​IMG] or the IRS would 'nt let me LOL
  10. HHandbasket

    HHandbasket The Chickeneer

    At this point, it is only a hobby, but DH and I are constantly brainstorming on how to at least help our hatching addiction to pay for itself, kinda like an alcoholic who gets a job as a bartender. Hehehehe.

    We are pretty fortunate in that we have a really nice, good-sized incubator that will hold about 36-40 eggs (probably more if I got creative LOL), a pretty pricey one (for my life, maybe not for everybody's life), and it was gifted to my husband by a friend who knew he was getting into hatching. Our costs will mostly involve acquiring eggs of the breeds we want to hatch and the feeding/caring of the chicks.

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