how to hatch eggs naturally...

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by GOLD, Mar 8, 2013.

  1. GOLD

    GOLD Out Of The Brooder

    27
    0
    32
    Mar 8, 2013
    Hi everyone,
    this year I am going to try and hatch some chicks naturally. I have never done this before so i have some questions. What I think im going to do is get 2 silkie hens and 1 rooster... How do i know when they are ready to start sitting, do i just leave them once they start and what should the nest boxes look like?
     
  2. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

    36,238
    8,059
    666
    Jun 28, 2011
    Rep of Ireland
    [​IMG]

    A broody hen will stay in the nest box, refuse to get up and may peck you if you remove her eggs. Before you give her eggs to hatch make sure she really is broody though. She should sit for at least 2 days and sleep in the nest box as well. The nest box can be anything, really. As long as it's big enough for the hen to sit comfortably in.

    Here a long, interesting thread on broody hen hatches that I think you will enjoy:

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/...ody-hen-hatch-a-long-and-informational-thread
     
  3. GOLD

    GOLD Out Of The Brooder

    27
    0
    32
    Mar 8, 2013
    I keep seeing people say i have to give her eggs to sit on but can't i just let her collect and sit on her own eggs?
     
  4. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

    36,238
    8,059
    666
    Jun 28, 2011
    Rep of Ireland
    You can, but there is no guarantees with this method. The hen may lay a few eggs and go broody, or she may not. Broodiness is a hormonal thing and it can happen anytime, or never. You can encourage a hen to go broody by leaving a few eggs for her, but mark them so you can remove the fresh laid ones daily. Or leave fake eggs/golf balls in the nest box. I've had some success with this, but it really depends on the individual hen and how prone to broodiness she is. Silkie hens are more broody than average, so it may work for you.
     
  5. beanone

    beanone New Egg

    I have six silkies and one two week old silkie chick! If you get silkies they will let you know when they are ready! I have broodmania going on right now! They are very sweet and are wonderful mothers! My hens are 7 months old and pretty much all went broody at the same time. We let one go and broke all the others.the hen we let go broody sat really well and was constantly trying to increase her egg count by stealing the other girls eggs! She hatched one chick two weeks ago and all the other silkies act like proud aunties. No problems with any of them or the roo, he even lets the new chick run under his feet and eat right out from under him! They free range all day and the new mom and chick sleep inside at night due to our tropical rains and the fact that my silkies sleep in a pile rather than roosting! Good luck and have fun!
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by