How long before breeding

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by kyle7630, Jan 19, 2011.

  1. kyle7630

    kyle7630 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 14, 2008
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    How long does it take from the time you put a rooster with hens, untill you have fertile eggs assuming that they breed? As long as I'm asking, will most roosters just hop right on or does it take a while for them to figure it out? What roll does diet play in his fertility?
     
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

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    Your questions go from easy to harder.

    It takes an egg about 25 hours to make its way through the hen's internal egg laying factory. The egg can only be fertilized in the first 15 minutes of its internal journey. This means if the mating took place on a Monday, Monday's egg will not be fertile. Tuesday's egg might or might not be fertile. It depends on what time Monday it started its journey and what time of day the mating took place. Wednesday's egg will almost certainly be fertile. As you mentioned, this is after a mating, not just an introduction. A rooster will not necessarily mate with every hen in the flock each day.

    If the rooster and hen are mature enough the rooster will usually hop on. If either are immature or if the rooster does not have a bit of a strong personality (almost all roosters do), then there may be some resistance or lack of interest. But, yes, usually "hop on" is a good description.

    Diet gets complicated. It actually applies to both the hen and rooster. The fairly simple answer is that they need enough nutrition to be fertile. While they need a sufficient amount of protein, there are several other trace elements and such they need. Feeding more protein will not make a bit of difference if the other nutrients are missing. If they free range and can get a varied diet, they are probably OK. Chickens eating nothing but regular chicken feed are probably OK, but the large commercial breeders feed an enhanced product to their breeding flocks. That enhanced feed for breeders is hard for us small hobby flock people to get and is usually unnecessary. So I guess the answer is that both hen and rooster need a well-balanced diet.
     
  3. kyle7630

    kyle7630 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Great answers. Not only did I get the info I requested, but I also got the answers I was hoping for. That's awesome. Thanks!
     

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