Hatching eggs under a hen

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by WapiFarm, Mar 20, 2017.

  1. WapiFarm

    WapiFarm Just Hatched

    Mar 20, 2017
    Okay so this is my first time trying to hatch chicks under a broody girl. I put 8 eggs under my broody Blue Laced Wyndotte. She sat on the eggs for 23 days and only had two hatch one is super healthy and doing great the other was bald except for a few feathers and looked under developed. The other six never hatched. At day 19 we forgot to go gather eggs and she apparently stole about 10 new eggs and sat on them for about 24-36hrs, could this have caused her eggs not to hatch? We did candlelight the eggs that she was on and all of them seemed to be growing as per normal, but only got one chick. Did we give her too many to start with? Or did the late egg addition cause some to die?? Help I want to try again next time one of my Wyndotte or Rock Barred girls go broody, but I really want more success...

    Also should we put more chicks under her or just let her raise the one by itself???
  2. AmyLynn2374

    AmyLynn2374 Humidity Queen

    Oct 11, 2014
    Gouverneur, NY

    :welcome sorry to hear you didn't have a great hatch. While not recommended, the late additions wouldn't have caused the others not to hatch. The problem with having staggered hatches under a broody is that the hen will normally leave the later eggs to take care of hatchlings or not take care of the hatchlings because they are still dedicated to the unhatched eggs. Usually it's they'll leave the other eggs.

    There's not much control when you are hatching by broody. There's not much you can do other than let nature take it's course. There's so many variables it's hard to pin point with why broody eggs don't hatch. You can eggtopsy the eggs to pinpoint at what development stage they quit at, but as for any concrete answer, I think it would be hard to tell. I had a little mix girl hide eggs and didn't find her till I heard chirping and found her with 18 babies and 3 eggs still in her hidden nest. Two that were rotten and one that had internally pipped but never made it to hatch. She wasn't a very big girl, but was able to cover that many, so I would think a Wyandotte would be fine covering 8. If they made it all the way to hatch time before quitting then you know she covered them well.

    The most you can do, is collect and store them properly, and give them to the broody when it's time. After that it's pretty much a nature thing. Nutrition and health of the egg layers can affect the success of the hatch. The condition and age of the eggs themselves, good shell quality, not filthy or mishandled are other things outside of the incubation that can be looked at. Proper collection and storage will factor in there.

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