How to improve hatch rates on shipped eggs?

just2rosey

Songster
9 Years
Jan 7, 2011
468
1
111
New Kent
We are just beginning to start a flock of chickens for my daughter's 4-h project, and due to the lack of breeders in the area we have been buying hatching eggs. So far I am seeing less than a 50% start rate. Take this hatch for example I started out with 44 eggs ( the sellers sent lots of extra's) I candled at day 10 and tossed 25. I have now candled again, with a better light and I have at least 9 more that I am pretty sure are quitters. I see blood rings in them, and far less development than in the other eggs. That means I am down to less than 25%. I hatched out a couple of barnyard mixes for my neighbor, and they all hatched. Does anyone know of anything we could do that would improve the success ratio? Thanks for any advice.
 

pips&peeps

There is no "I" in Ameraucana
Jan 18, 2008
8,431
178
381
Newman Lake, WA
Make sure the seller isn't selling you old eggs. I usually only ship eggs that are a max of 4 days old; sometimes the extras are five days old. Age of the egg is an important factor.
 

Katy

Flock Mistress
12 Years
Jun 29, 2007
16,317
87
331
Kansas~50+ yrs of chickens
I agree you need to make sure you're getting fresh eggs, but there are some things that shipping does that nothing we can do can improve your hatch rate. It's just a risk that goes along with shipped eggs. I was in the same boat as you.....no local breeders and so I had to rely on shipped eggs to get the breeds I wanted. If I had to do it over I'd start out with started pairs or trios. I think it would have been cheaper in the long run. I had everything from 0 out of 18 eggs to 11 out of 13 eggs.
 

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