Fertilized verses unfertilized eggs

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Tapsmom, Apr 24, 2011.

  1. Tapsmom

    Tapsmom Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 13, 2011
    Hi, I am very new to chicken ownership. Of the 2 straight run chickens we purchased one started crowing last week so we do have a rooster. The other 5 are pullets. What kind of a problem does this present once the chickens start laying eggs? Do we need to "candle" all of the eggs to see which ones we can eat? What if we don't want to hatch any? My husband insists that we need to candle all of the eggs because they will have chicks already growing in them. Not to sound dumb, but is this true?
  2. Rockpile99

    Rockpile99 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 22, 2009
    Chicks only start growing when the eggs are incubated. If you collect your eggs everyday, you shouldn't have a problem with this.
  3. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    Nothing will grow unless the egg is incubated. Almost every egg we eat here is fertile.
  4. wsdareme

    wsdareme Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 9, 2010
    Yelm, WA
    There are no dumb questions -- we all asked this one at some time or another.

    No, you will not need to candle your eggs -- as long as you collect them every day. The eggs may or may not be fertile (depends on whether your rooster breeds all your hens). But even fertile eggs do not begin to develop embryos until they are incubated for several days, either by a hen that has gone broody or artificially in an incubator. Even eggs that sit around for a few days (eggs do not need to be refrigerated and will stay fresh for several weeks) will not begin to develop embryos unless they are kept in an environment that is about 99.5 degrees F with proper levels of humidity.

    Fertile eggs do not taste any differently than infertile eggs, nor do they have more nutrition (some people may argue this point and there are many people that WANT to eat fertile eggs).

    When you crack open your eggs, there will be a white spot. All eggs have this spot -- it is called the blastoderm. If the egg is fertile, it will have a "bulls-eye" appearance.

    Here is a link to some great photos that show the difference between fertile and infertile eggs: https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=16008
  5. Tapsmom

    Tapsmom Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 13, 2011
    Thanks for your quick answers. I didn't think we had to worry if we were collecting them daily, but he was insistent. LOL...and I'm the one who's been doing all of the research [​IMG] Neither of us has ever had chickens before. However, he is right now drawing the chicken coop designs and wants to make sure it is big enough to add more chickens! we currently have 6 and he is planning our final coop to be 10x10. heehee

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