How long does a hen stay fertile / How long to make Fertile eggs

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by juststruttin, Jan 13, 2011.

  1. juststruttin

    juststruttin Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,516
    156
    231
    Aug 9, 2010
    California
    Hi,

    I currently have a mixed barnyard flock consisting of several breeds. I would like to separate out a few breeding sets in order to obtain purebred eggs. How long do I have to wait to collect eggs once separated to guarantee purebred offspring? How long does it take for the eggs to become fertile once separated with the right roo?

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks:D
     
  2. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    At least three weeks should do it, though on rare occasions, there have been cases of eggs fertile by one rooster up to a month. Most are safe by two and a half, but three is what I'd do.
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

    19,965
    3,129
    476
    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    A hen will normally stay fertile about two weeks after a mating. Sometimes less, sometimes more. Many breeders use three weeks before they assume the eggs are fertilized by the right rooster. There have been reports on this forum of eggs being fertile about 3-1/2 weeks after a mating, rare but evidently it happens. So three weeks and you are pretty sure, four weeks and you are real safe.

    It normally takes an egg about 25 hours to make its way through the hen's internal egg laying factory. It can only be fertilized in the first 15 minutes or so of that journey. Assume a mating occurs on a Monday. Monday's egg will not be fertile. Tuesday's egg may or may not be fertile, depending on what time of day Monday the egg started its journey and what time the mating occurred. If the mating occurred on a Monday, Wednesday's egg will almost certainly be fertile.

    A rooster does not necessarily mate with every hen in the flock every day. Notice I said after a mating, not after they are put together.

    Hope this helps.
     
    1 person likes this.
  4. juststruttin

    juststruttin Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,516
    156
    231
    Aug 9, 2010
    California
    Thanks everyone. Thought I read 3 weeks somewhere but could not find it. Thanks for you help. I love my mutts, but am l:Dooking forward to some purebred chickies... Yeah!!! javascript:insert_text('[​IMG]', '');
     
  5. MobyQuail

    MobyQuail c. giganticus

    2,115
    23
    171
    Sep 10, 2010
    Quailtropolis
    just purchased 2 bantam rir hens, they were with 2 roos. we separated them to give them a break for a minute, but may incubate the next couple days worth of eggs to see what happens.

    good post. thanks, TD
     
  6. Arielle

    Arielle Chicken Obsessed

    16,711
    532
    408
    Feb 19, 2011
    Massachusetts, USA
    To complicate things I read a post long ago, and of course I can't find it, that reports an interesting phenomenon. When a hen is covered by a second roo, that too is the one to father all the chicks. The upshot of this post was that in 2-3 days of a hen being covered by a new roo, he's the daddy. I wish I could find the post; the source was pretty reliable as I remember. THen my understanding is that if he's removed, she's likely to be fertile for 2-3 weeks. THe old posts make for great reading--just takes a bit of time but well worth it.
     
  7. TheRealMadDog

    TheRealMadDog New Egg

    2
    0
    8
    Apr 15, 2013
    I use 2- no more than 3 weeks as to your answer on how long your eggs stay fertilized coming from the hen. However, be sure and keep them in a cool place like 70 to no more than 80 degree room temperatature and incubate by 5 days otherwise the fertilization and birthrate RAPIDLY goes down AFTER this time. Best of luck building up your pure bred flock. [​IMG][​IMG] TheRealMadDog Chicken Farmer
     
  8. TheRealMadDog

    TheRealMadDog New Egg

    2
    0
    8
    Apr 15, 2013
    How long does it take for a chicken to cross a road.......depends on the chicken and several factors and if there are hens over there etc............... if he happens to be a rooster and is feeling amorous. [​IMG][​IMG]The Real MadDog's Chicken Farm(ex USAF Fighter Pilot and US Airways Airline Captain(retired now and raising various breeds of chickens/chicks).
     
  9. 5 Acre Rooster

    5 Acre Rooster Chillin' With My Peeps

    595
    30
    111
    Apr 18, 2013
    North Missouri

    I think what the statement meant was the idea that if a new roo is introduced and breeds the hen the younger sperm, from 2nd roo,will more likely fertilize the egg but this isn't always the case. I would say 3 weeks is about what 75% of poultry material suggest for chickens.
     
  10. lennyox

    lennyox New Egg

    2
    0
    6
    Jun 8, 2013
    north queensland
    Thats all cool it was what i was looking for i am new to this i tried my incubator for the first time with 2 eggs just to see how it all works and to my surprise both eggs hatched last night at around the same time only 20 days cool
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by