How soon might I get fertilised eggs?

Chicken-mumma

Chirping
Nov 10, 2020
30
71
59
I have a 15 week old chook, which was sold as a hen, but I am sure it's a rooster. I contacted the breeder and they said they are 90% sure it's a hen because it's not crowing yet.

Today I happened to catch it on top of one of my laying hens, and I assume they were mating (my view was partially obstructed).

Could it be possible that he would start mating before crowing? If so, how soon might I expect to have fertilised eggs?

I'm have another hen which has just gone broody this week and hoping I might be able to hatch some eggs under her.

Photo of rooster on the right with a hen I got at the same time on the left (the black chickens).
PXL_20201120_090059810.jpg
 

Chicken-mumma

Chirping
Nov 10, 2020
30
71
59
Thank you. So a good chance we could still be a few weeks off. I'll check in a week or so. Hopefully he doesn't start crowing. Would love to keep a rooster if I can get away with it 😁
 

Folly's place

Enabler
Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Sep 13, 2011
24,119
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southern Michigan
Of course he will crow! He's handsome too, and just starting to do his thing. Do you have hens, or are they all pullets, under one year of age? It's best to wait to hatch eggs from birds older than this spring's babies, so in the coming spring will be the best time.
Check your eggs for fertility, and you'll know if he's producing or not.
Will you have a plan for all the cockerels you'll have if you hatch eggs at home!
Broodiness does tend to strike at inconvenient times! I try to plan, and the hens laugh...
Mary
 

Chicken-mumma

Chirping
Nov 10, 2020
30
71
59
Of course he will crow! He's handsome too, and just starting to do his thing. Do you have hens, or are they all pullets, under one year of age? It's best to wait to hatch eggs from birds older than this spring's babies, so in the coming spring will be the best time.
Check your eggs for fertility, and you'll know if he's producing or not.
Will you have a plan for all the cockerels you'll have if you hatch eggs at home!
Broodiness does tend to strike at inconvenient times! I try to plan, and the hens laugh...
Mary

Thanks. I assume he will crow at some stage, hopefully not any time soon 😁
The hen I saw him with is only about 10 months. I have older hens, but I haven't seen him with them yet.
Once he starts crowing, I'll have to let him go. Breeder did say they will take him back, although I'm also considering culling for meat, which is what I'm hoping to do in future with any other boys we hatch. Trying to become more self sustainable.
 

BDutch

Naturally ❤️
Premium Feather Member
6 Years
May 19, 2015
3,532
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the Netherlands
My Coop
My Coop
@Chicken-mumma , I am not very experienced in this. But twice I kept a young rooster till spring for offspring. It did work great.

I could hold on to the crowing rooster during winter. But in spring when sun rises early some of my neighbours got annoyed (including myself).

I collected /stored eggs in march. And left 4 fake eggs + pingpong balls in one laying nest (suitable for chicks). Within a week I had two broodies sharing the nest.
My Dutch are reliable and super good broodies. I know this trick works with other wannabe broody breeds too.

Did he start to crow?
If you’re rooster turns out to be a rarely/soft crowing rooster, you should keep him/sell him to breed with. There are a lot of city/urban chicken lovers who would love to buy his offspring if the rarely or soft crow is genetic.
 

Chicken-mumma

Chirping
Nov 10, 2020
30
71
59
@Chicken-mumma , I am not very experienced in this. But twice I kept a young rooster till spring for offspring. It did work great.

I could hold on to the crowing rooster during winter. But in spring when sun rises early some of my neighbours got annoyed (including myself).

I collected /stored eggs in march. And left 4 fake eggs + pingpong balls in one laying nest (suitable for chicks). Within a week I had two broodies sharing the nest.
My Dutch are reliable and super good broodies. I know this trick works with other wannabe broody breeds too.

Did he start to crow?
If you’re rooster turns out to be a rarely/soft crowing rooster, you should keep him/sell him to breed with. There are a lot of city/urban chicken lovers who would love to buy his offspring if the rarely or soft crow is genetic.
Unfortunately he did start to crow soon after my original post. It was only pretty quiet, and not every day, but I'm sure it would have gotten louder and more frequent as he got better at it. Luckily the breeder took him back.
 

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