hatching without incubator?


9 Years
Mar 13, 2010
Is it possible to try and hatch a few eggs without an incubator? Was thinking of using a heating pad or a light we used for the chicks when we got them. I just can't buy an incubator but my son wants to try to hatch some if this is possible. Thanks!
It's not just consistant heat but also correct humidity. Try to find a broody hen to sit on your eggs.

My cochin and silkie hens went broody last month. That makes 4 hatchery stock hens to go broody in the last year.

I thought I read somewhere that broodiness is bred out of hatchery stock but not mine.
I have 4 hens that are currently laying and have tried leaving a few in the nest but they've never developed into anything. They are about 1 yr. old now. Would they sit on them if they were fertile at this age? Sorry to be so ignorant about it. We've started thinking about hatching some out. Thanks again!
Hi! Do a search (or there may be a thread for homemade incubators).
Anything you can find that will maintain constant 101 degrees temperature for 21 days *becomes* an incubator. There is also the issue of humidity, not difficult to maintain if you are in a humid climate --- 50% - 55% is what a hygrometer reads under my 'brooding hens' .
Good luck!

Hi! It's a silly question but I have to ask,
I have 4 hens that are currently laying and have tried leaving a few in the nest but they've never developed into anything.

do you have a rooster?
The eggs won't develop unless they are fertilized by a rooster AND there is a hen that wants to hatch eggs and will sit on them for the required 21 days.

Dipsy Doodle Doo, Yes I have 2 roosters that are the same age as the hen. I've seen them mate and sometimes one hen in particular will be sitting on eggs when I go into the coop and kinda bows up at me so I leave, but when I come back she's not sitting on them and they are cold. I tried marking a few and leaving them in for a week and then candling them with no luck on any fertile eggs. Do they get upset if I'm taking some of the eggs out and just leaving a few? Thanks for your help. I feel like a dipsy doodle dum dum!
Howdy from another "dipsy doodle dum dum"

I'm new to the world of chickens, so my input is simply based on reading info on BYC, and trial & error, nuttin' super scientific ya know

We had a couple Banties go broody, AGAIN
seems we jus got over an episode.....and since the hens wernt doing much egg laying, we left one egg in the nest, and marked it so we wouldnt remove it when we took any other eggs we found in the nest.
The setting hens would growl when we reached under to remove any other eggs that showed up, but nothing drastic.

The 2 hens have been sharing "setting duty", and we're now at day 22...heard a peep this evening so maaaaaaaaaaaaaybe we'll find a chick soon.

Now I'd like to see chicks being incubated inna bra!
OMG whatta hoot!!!

Good luck.
I have read tales of folk who have incubated eggs in airing cupboards, next to range cookers and under damp mops by an open fire! There are other suggestions on the internet. Some no doubt work, but the hatch rate is likely to be pretty low,
it would be a really rough idea, but you might try a cheap styrofoam cooler with wet sponges for humidity with a heat light for heat. Try to get it to where your temp stays around 99. Get the humidity up to 50% until day 18- then stop turning and increase humidity to 65%, more sponges may even have to hang wet rags on the side of the cooler wall. Watch the air cell and if getting to big to quick add more sponges rags, or bowls of water etc. You might even put some sand in the bottom of the cooler to hold a constant heat but would have to check the temp of the sand after exposed to heat. Just some off the wall ideas you might be able to make work wiht out buying a bator

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