Egg Question.

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Chickengirl47, Mar 13, 2012.

  1. Chickengirl47

    Chickengirl47 Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,595
    16
    148
    Feb 7, 2012
    Louisiana
    One of my chickens, (lilly) is laying on her egg and my other chickens egg, and I think she wants to hatch them. My question was, Can I give her one of my fertle eggs from the incubater?

    Thanks!
     
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

    20,665
    4,193
    526
    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    I'm not sure I understand enough of your situation to give a good answer. Are the eggs she is now sitting on fertile? Did the eggs in the incubator start at the same time she started setting on those two eggs? If not, what is the time difference? How many eggs are we talking about in the incubator? Could the hen cover all those eggs? A hen can usually cover more than a dozen eggs the size she lays, but a bantam might have trouble covering 4 full sized eggs.

    The way I tell if a hen is truly broody and deserves some eggs is she has to spend two consecutive nights on the nest instead of roosting in her normal spot. I've had some that really acted broody but they were only teasing me. That's why I use the two night rule.
     
  3. Chickengirl47

    Chickengirl47 Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,595
    16
    148
    Feb 7, 2012
    Louisiana
    The eggs she is laying on are not fertile. The eggs in the incubator are 13 days old, and she is laying on 2 eggs layed this morning. I was going to see if I could swap out the infertile eggs she's laying on with fertile eggs from my incubator.
     
  4. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

    20,665
    4,193
    526
    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    Thanks, that helps. You are dealing with living animals., so there is no way to guarantee how they would react, but I would swap at least some of them.

    Broodies can't really count days, but they go by instincts. Your eggs have been developing almost two weeks longer than she has been broody. There is always the chance she won't accept the chicks, but I would put some eggs under her and try it. The chicks will peep while still in the shell, after they internally pip and well before they hatch. The hen will go through the hatching process, listening to them and talking back. I think you have an excellent chance of it working very well.

    I don't know how many eggs you have in the incubator, but I would candle them. All you should see at 13 to 14 days is a dark mass with the air cell clear. I would put at least a few good eggs under her and let her hatch them. Then what you do from there depends on how she reacts and how many you hatch. This way you only risk a few, not all your chicks.

    I did something close to this last year. The differences were that the hen had been broody about the same time the eggs were first set. Also, I had a snake eating eggs out from under the broody so I could not leave good eggs under her, just golf balls. When the chicks hatched in the incubator, I selected 4 chicks and put them under the hen at night, around10:00 p.m. I did not want to risk all of them because of the snake. She accepted them no problem. When she took the chicks off the nest, I moved her to a prepared place and put her 4 plus the other 11 in a box and gently dumped the box in front of her. She accepted and raised all 15 chicks. After I was sure she had accepted hem, I turned her loose and let her raise them with the flock.

    Youir situation is a little different, but I really think you have a great chance giving her the eggs.
     
    1 person likes this.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by