bkvail

Songster
10 Years
Mar 9, 2009
277
1
132
Skagit County, NW Washington
I'm crossing my fingers hoping one of my welsummer hens goes broody, but if they don't, I will be hatching some of the eggs myself. I have a question about fertility though. I have a trio - and the roo keeps the girls next to him at all times. They are free-range - they do have a fenced area that they roost in at night, but they fly out during the day. Anyhow, I have a 2 year old hen and a one year old hen. The 2 year old's eggs have all been fertile so far. The one year old's eggs have NOT been fertile. Also, the one year old's eggs are lighter colored than the two year olds...... if they are lighter now, will they darken later? Or should I just consider only hatching from the 2 year old hen (who is smaller, but has a nicer conformation and the darker eggs). I just wonder why the younger hen's eggs haven't been fertile (not ONE that I've been watching as I use them the last two weeks - while every one of the older hens has been fertile) I probably should just consider hatching the older hen's eggs? I do like the size on the younger hen, but the eggs aren't as pretty. Anyhow.......... opinions?
 

gumpsgirl

Crowing
Premium Feather Member
11 Years
Mar 25, 2008
14,106
41
311
Virginia
Welsummer's eggs generally get darker the more they lay. I've been watching mine and they started out light and have been getting darker over the past few weeks. How long has yours been laying? If it's been a while then they might be as dark as they are going to get.

As far as fertility goes, have you seen the roo mate the younger hen? Maybe the 2 year-old has been his favorite and he isn't doing his job with the other hen.
 

bkvail

Songster
10 Years
Mar 9, 2009
277
1
132
Skagit County, NW Washington
she has only been laying about a month.

No, I haven't actually seen the roo mate with the younger hen - I see him and the older hen though for sure. Do roo's pick favorites like that? Maybe the older hen is just ''easier''? LOL
 

gumpsgirl

Crowing
Premium Feather Member
11 Years
Mar 25, 2008
14,106
41
311
Virginia
If she's only been laying a month, then it is still likely that her egg color will darken some.

As for the mating issue, roos can and do pick their favorites. The newer layers always seem to be a bit fussy at first to be mated anyways, so he might not be bothering with her just yet.

Give it a little more time and things will be running the way they should be there.
 

bkvail

Songster
10 Years
Mar 9, 2009
277
1
132
Skagit County, NW Washington
maybe I'll just hatch a few of the older hen's eggs then - and wait until next year on the younger hen to decide on her
I have people interested in chicks - and I do have two 'bators, so maybe I'll just do two different hatches as the older hen lays
 

shelleyd2008

the bird is the word
11 Years
Sep 14, 2008
23,381
96
351
Adair Co., KY
If the roo came from a dark egg, that would make the pullet chicks' eggs darker. So you could hatch the young hen's as well, provided the roo gets busy!
 

gumpsgirl

Crowing
Premium Feather Member
11 Years
Mar 25, 2008
14,106
41
311
Virginia
Quote:That would work, but it certainly wouldn't hurt to throw in some of the younger hens eggs to see if they are fertile. Double checking never hurts!
 

bkvail

Songster
10 Years
Mar 9, 2009
277
1
132
Skagit County, NW Washington
Quote:That would work, but it certainly wouldn't hurt to throw in some of the younger hens eggs to see if they are fertile. Double checking never hurts!


I have been using her eggs for cooking - and none have had any dot of red like the older hens - so I know she's not been fertilized.......would be a waste until I see an egg of hers with the red spot
 

needtohatch

Songster
10 Years
Feb 27, 2009
377
6
131
Hart Co
A red dot does not mean it is fertilized. It is the white bullseye on the yoke. Double check them, sometimes you have to take a fork and gently flip the yoke over if it is on the bottom side.
 

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom