How long can fertile eggs sit before they have to go in the incubator?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Shrader, May 12, 2008.

  1. Shrader

    Shrader Songster

    Apr 7, 2007
    Los Angeles, CA
    My incubator should arrive later this week.
    I'm just wondering how long these fertile eggs will be okay without warming up.
  2. Katy

    Katy Flock Mistress

    After 7 days the fertility starts dropping.

    I just came back and was reading this topic again.....I should have said hatchability not fertility.
    Last edited: May 12, 2008
  3. chickenlady

    chickenlady Songster

    Aug 28, 2007
    Stillwater, NJ
    I have left them in the crisper drawer of my refrigerator for 2 weeks and still had a good hatch. However, rule of thumb is after 1 week, hatchability decreases slightly, after 2 weeks, it decreases by 50% or more depending on how they were stored during that time.
  4. Hi Shrader,
    The eggs are marked with the day they were laid.
    I wouldn't hold them for longer than 7 days past then.
    Good luck!
  5. Shrader

    Shrader Songster

    Apr 7, 2007
    Los Angeles, CA
    Hey Lis,

    Thanks for the eggs!
    I was just going to email you.
    They all arrived in great condition.
    I'm not sure if you saw my recent saga on here:
    one of the eggs that I thought was dead
    (that I was only keeping under the hen as a place-holder until these arrived)
    suddenly started peeping yesterday -- then hatched last night!
    I'm so excited -- but now I don't have a broody chicken.
    And I don't want to let these beautiful eggs go to waste.
    So I've ordered an incubator.
    I guess I should have thought of this before --
    but I honestly thought the old eggs were bad.
    So, crossing my fingers that the 'bator gets here in time.
    Wish me luck.
    Should I put the eggs in the fridge?

  6. Hi! Yes, saw and responded to the other post.
    So glad the eggs made it ok [​IMG]
    Is the hen still on the nest with the chick? It might not too late to bring the chick inside to a brooder and give the hen the new eggs.
    I hope it all works out.
  7. Hangin Wit My Peeps

    Hangin Wit My Peeps

    Apr 20, 2008
    Birnamwood, Wisconsin
    I have read that you should keep the fertile eggs between 50 and 60 degrees.
  8. wilds of pa

    wilds of pa Songster

    10-14 days is a good average...wild turkeys seem to think that..

    My hens lay a clutch and it may take them 14 days to do so. they have 100% hatches most of the time on eggs in a nest..

  9. RyanAndMeri

    RyanAndMeri In the Brooder

    Sep 10, 2007
    Oh cool I was just going to ask this very same question. These forums are great!! [​IMG]

    I have a question about those broody hens. We have 2 hens that act broody for about 2 hours then they go off and play. Is that just practice? Or because we disturb them they decide "heck with this" and quit being broody. We'd love a hen to hatch some eggs but they really don't sit for more than a few hours.

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