Incubator vs. Brooder

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Lurch1, Dec 30, 2009.

  1. Lurch1

    Lurch1 Out Of The Brooder

    Dec 28, 2009
    Perth, ON
    What are your thoughts or preferences? Is it important to select or cull this trait? Is it important for sustainable agriculture?
  2. jenjscott

    jenjscott Mosquito Beach Poultry

    May 24, 2008
    Southeast Arkansas
    If you want truly sustainable agriculture, you must have some broodies. All those eggs won't do you any good if you can't hatch. Sustainable infers self-sustaining, which should be possible even without power. I think you have to retain some broodiness. Obviously if you want to mass produce chicks, you don't want everybody broody all the time.
  3. saladin

    saladin Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 30, 2009
    the South
    Some breeds are natural broodies and some are not. I guess it is theoretically possible to breed out broodiness but I don't know of anyone who has ever done it.

    Therefore, I would say that using an incubator is not going to be detrimental to the sustainable flock. saladin
  4. txredneckmedic

    txredneckmedic Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 20, 2009
    I love my broody. She gets alot better hatch rates than I can with a incubator
  5. walkswithdog

    walkswithdog Overrun With Chickens

    Jul 17, 2008
    DC Region
    Oh ask the hatcheries about having bred broodiness out of the breeds they sell. Because by and large in most commercially available breeds, they have. About 1/3 of my hatchery partridge rocks and other rocks for that matter, go broody. My black australorps never did. In other breeds the numbers vary but it's never 100% in any breed I've kept. And in birds from hatcheries it's a lot less common. I'll see how my Dels do this year. But nothing is certain. Broodiness can indeed be bred out, as can fertility if you're not careful.

    Broodies also make mistakes, have brain farts, go missing, end up dead etc. Sustainable isn't just having some chickens that brood, but sustainable can mean the sense to have an incubator if you need one for an emergency. While it's nice to be able to have something hatch, if you don't have power. Having power can mean hatching when you suddenly don't have broody. I've saved incubator eggs under broodies in a power outtage, and broody's eggs in an incubator. Broody's can not be made to hatch eggs when you want. An incubator does. If you have to wait for a broody you can waste months or weeks of time when you could be hatching and growing another generation toward your goals.

    So sustainable is in many ways a two lane highway. They work best together.
  6. txredneckmedic

    txredneckmedic Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 20, 2009
    my black australorp is the one that goes broody for me
  7. saladin

    saladin Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 30, 2009
    the South
    I totally agree with walksw in the second paragraph dealing with sustainability.

    As for the lecture on breeding broodiness out, I would not rightly know as I don't buy hatchery stock. Did once but killed them all. If I buy stock I buy from breeders not propagators. saladin
  8. eggsrcool

    eggsrcool Sussex Fanatic

    Personally, I would go for broody. I hate the whole incubator thing to be honest.
  9. rocketdog312

    rocketdog312 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 16, 2009
    Phoenix, Arizona
    incubator for sure, not because its safer, not because it has a better hatch rate. but because you can control it. it gives people a good state of mind. you always know whats gonna happen. And if something does happen thats not planned. you can deal with it. people who trust their birds 100% don't know a thing about it. espescieally when it comes to broodiness. broodiness has been tampered with by our ancestors for hundreds of years. pretty much the only thing controlling a broody hen is chemical inbalances in its head. not from instinct. a chicken such as an RIR that has been bred not to go broody. will possibly find one of its hatched chicks as lunch, not family. Only if you get a incubator can you have that sense of security. And know what to do and when to do it.

    so, an incubator would be the best choice.
  10. Intheswamp

    Intheswamp Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 25, 2009
    South Alabama
    Quote:Ok, so when TEOTWAWKI comes, the grid is un-plugged, and the solar-charged storage batteries have long since become simply large pieces of inert lead due to age and so can't energize the inverter....what's going to power that incubator? It'd be *real* nice about that time to have some broodies around or I guess you could put some eggs under your armpits for three weeks but then it might be difficult to tell if they were going bad and about to'd also be difficult working a garden, cutting firewood, etc., with'em nestled in the armpits....after thinking about it for just about a split second the broodies sound better to me than the armpits. But, to each his own.

    Just some thoughts,
    Happy New Year,

    Edited to add: My idea of sustainable is not having to rely on an outside energy or supply source...basically being independent of the modern economic greed system. If I can make it, grow it, and harvest it without leaving my acres then the land is sustaining me and my family. To me, sustainability and self-sufficiency are close kin. I just wish I could get headed more so in that direction.
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2009

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