There are many reputable breeders nationwide who sell hatching eggs (and some not-so-reputable). If you're wanting to try hatching out of an incubator I would try your local feed supply store first (because as worse as it may sound I would much rather fail my first time hatching cheap eggs than expensive ones, like I did). There are (sometimes) hatching eggs on CL.
In addition to the ones here. Which are great if you want a specific breed or good quality.... You can usually find someone local through craigslist who has fertile eggs really cheap. I've got delaware eggs for $3 / dozen and Australorpe for $10 / dozen no shipping and good fertility. They were both local but you can tell by the babies these were hatchery stock. So good enough egg layers but not show birds or anything. But nice hatching fun and cheap.
That's more up to how much you want to spend which is up to you.
If cost wasn't an issue I'd get a Brinsea Octo or something along that line but for me cost was a factor.
If cost is an issue and you are handy you can build a homemade incubator, results vary based on your skill and understanding of what is needed to hatch multiple thread laying around for that one.
If cost is an issue and you aren't handy you can buy a Little Giant with egg turner and fan for about $100 (of course I'm about to buy 3 off of craigslist for the same $100) be very careful chickens and hatching are addictive those three will bring me up to 5 little Giants. Cause later you'll want your incubator to be seperate from your hatcher LOL. that was you can stagger incubation and hatches. The little giant takes some very specific conditions such as a stable room with out drafts. I have hatched several batches with 50% hatch rate or higher on shipped eggs and with power loss. I am now on my 3rd hatch but I lost temp due to unstable room temp. The cold dipped in an my heater in the house wasn't on so we'll see how this hatch goes.
If cost is an issue but you really only want to hatch 4-5 hens then the brinsea mini is only like $69 but then you have to hand turn eggs. it will hold up to 10 eggs but 1/2 will be boys so that would be 4-5 hens.
There are other brands and they all have advantages and disadvantages. Until you hit the big cabinet incubators the brinsea is kinda considered the best if you spring for the more expensive models especially the model with automatic humidity control it is really set it and forget it.
The LG (little giant) is the cheapest for number of eggs and has it's own thread for Little giant tricks. I'd read up before putting out the money. I like my little giants and have been mostly pleased with the results but if I wasn't a cheap skate then I'd have a nice big automatic Brinsea with the Ova scope
That is some good info cause i want cheap for my first one and id like to make my own after we try it out and get it down. So with cheap and FIRST time doing this wich one do you perfer? I mean 70 sounds reasonable if its good to go and i was looking on ebay for eggs , do you have a go to person for eggs? My local feed store Tractor Supple has the little giant for like 40 bucks and can the kids turn the eggs or is that not good for them?
There's nothing wrong with a lowest of the low-end hova-bator...that's what I have and I spent $55 total including shipping. Mine is the still-air version, with no 'auto turners' or fancy digital readers, no fans, etc...it still hatches eggs. I had 90% hatch rate with local eggs from a friend here on the forum and I've had 70% hatch rate *with shipped eggs* and I've also had horrible 10% hatch rate with shipped eggs (from a bad hatchery, mind you). I ordered a Brinsea Octagon 20 and it arrived broken (packaged looked fine). I returned it for a full refund, and my next bator purchase will be an RCOM (in the distant future). For now - I'm sticking to my cheap-o $55 hova-bator, because it works just fine. It requires more effort than an auto-bator but if you have time on your hands it's a good experience.
I didn't plan on it but hubby got the fan and egg turner. I'll tell you I think they are worth the money. You are supposed to turn 3x a day and the fan helps keep the temps stable in the whole box. 21 days is a long time to not forget things. Now some people forget and still get good hatch but I like the piece of mind.
My egg guy right now is me I'm making some easter eggers and meat birds for fun. In a few weeks I'm getting some copper marans from someone here off the hatching egg thread.
I've done two shipped eggs with Marans, Ameracaunas, Barnvelders. Loved them.
I got locally Delaware eggs but hatchery parents. And my broody hatched some Australorpes from local craigslist.
Depending on where you live you may be able to get fertile eggs at the grocery store. but they would most likely hatch out leghorns which are flighty birds. there's a thread search Trader Joe's