Just back from vaca and broody hen may be incubating eggs for me?!?!?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by HB&B, Sep 5, 2010.

  1. HB&B

    HB&B Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 8, 2010
    Woodlawn, TN
    So we just had a 9 day vacation. Had some friends take care of the animals for us. Went out to the coop and Candled a few eggs and saw little veins in about 3 of them. I know nothing about hatching eggs, so I am glad my hen is taking care of this for me. I guess I'll let nature run its course.

    I took out a few eggs that had no veins, but unsure about cooking them for us. (May crack them and cook them for the hens). How long does this take? I saw a few candeling pics and the ones here are about 3 days. Thanks for any advise in advance!
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    21 days to hatch, more or less. I let mine hatch and raise chicks all the time; I don't even separate them. Usually they do well though there have been a few casualties. I lost the last 2 batches to fire ants; the hens pecked them to death but I'm 95% sure they were pecking at the ants; I saw them do it. Guess I'd better collect the eggs this time of year. They did fine when they hatched in October, etc., and our winter do get cold for babies, below freezing sometimes at night. I had 3 day old chicks outdoors midday anyway; they' run around for a few minutes then get under mama.

    You could certainly feed those eggs back to the chickens if you want to. Good protein. Mine will eat the occasional soft shelled egg or egg that they step on and break, and I don't believe I have any real egg eaters, as in, chickens who break eggs in order to eat them.

    Personally, I'd crack the ones without veins and probably eat the ones that look like ordinary healthy eggs. 9 days isn't that long. If you have a broody, I'd let the veined ones alone, but I assume you do; can't believe they'd develop that much unless someone is setting on them.

    Good luck, and let us know.
     
  3. HB&B

    HB&B Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 8, 2010
    Woodlawn, TN
    So Day 4 of egg setting for my hen. Spoke to caregiver and she said she had been broody all week since we left, but she took eggs out from under her daily with the exception of the last 2-3 days.
    I actually have 2 broody hens. I have left 4 eggs under one hen and 2 under other. The hen with two eggs let an egg out from under her not sure for how long, and I saw a red ring when candled.
    1.Is it still viable?


    2. How many eggs should I let them set on?


    I did candle the other eggs and they all looked good and I added a 4th egg to hen #1 today.
     
  4. Terri O

    Terri O Chillin' With My Peeps

    If they are big hens they can hatch 12-15. Smaller hens 9-12. My banties hatch eggs in my coop all the time too. I actually had 4 or 5 going at once about 2 months ago...they would hatch a baby, get it dry and then it would hop down and join the already hatched ones. They kept doing this and now I have about 30 [​IMG] half grown chickens in my coop! It was so cute to see all the mamas with the babies huddled all around them! Terri O
     
  5. olliecatch

    olliecatch Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 1, 2010
    Olympia, Washington
    I've never had a broody hen. I'm still waiting. [​IMG] [​IMG] : : Even though my DH would probably have a fit. Not really, he like the chickens maybe even more than I do.
     
  6. HB&B

    HB&B Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 8, 2010
    Woodlawn, TN
    Day 5: added 1 egg to each hen. I think I am gonna leave them at 8. I'm gonna see how well they do the whole broody thing then I am gonna order some full breed eggs and attempt hatching them once they go broody again. The egg that was pushed out from under mama was returned and seems to be developing. I have 2 bantam eggs, 2 EE mixes, and 2 leghorn mixes.

    Question: Can I candle the eggs too much?
     

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