late season chicks

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by mmclaughlin, Jul 25, 2014.

  1. mmclaughlin

    mmclaughlin Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 28, 2013
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    I was wondering how late in the year can you let a broody hatch chicks?
    we live in new england and it gets cold by october..would the chicks do ok in colder weather??
    would you let a broody hatch this now??
    thanks
     
  2. HEChicken

    HEChicken Overrun With Chickens

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    I had a hen go broody last November. It was mid-December when her chick hatched. When the chick was 12 days old, I woke up to find the thermometer reading -3. The chick was running around like it was a balmy summer day, not even that interested in staying under Mama Hen. If you look in my signature there is a link about "supplemental heat" that details more about that hen and her chick.
     
  3. mmclaughlin

    mmclaughlin Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 28, 2013
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    thanks for the great info..loved reading your story
     
  4. kim27

    kim27 Out Of The Brooder

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    The frozen chicken pictures in your blog were tragic! [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2014
  5. darkbluespace

    darkbluespace Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Great blog entry about supplemental heat... makes me excited to have chicks year round... which is handy because I can't stop incubating!
     
  6. mmclaughlin

    mmclaughlin Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 28, 2013
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    Well it's been 4 days ... Yup Rita (cukoo maran) is definitely broody
    I will try to get local fertilized eggs but if I can't find them does anyone have a favorite place for mail orders? How fast do they ship
    . I'd like to get them by the weekend??
    Hanks
     
  7. HEChicken

    HEChicken Overrun With Chickens

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    Shipped eggs are such a gamble. When I was in that situation a few years ago before we moved out to the country and could keep roosters, I turned to Craigslist. I did two things. First, I placed an ad myself: WTB: Fertile Eggs. Second, I looked for ads where people were selling eating eggs and contacted the seller to ask if by chance they were fertile. Most people don't advertise them as fertile because they're only trying to sell a few dozen excess eggs as "Farm Fresh Eggs". Sometimes they even deliberately leave that out because some people are grossed out at the thought that they might crack open an egg and find a chick inside (!) But when you contact them, they are happy to collect and sell you some eggs to be incubated instead of eaten.
     
  8. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    I have had hen reared chicks year round but have found that when natural forages are valued, chicks do better if in full feather by the time leaves fall from trees. At about that time productivity and mobility of insects consumed decreases to the point where they are locally exhausted by foraging. Adults can compensate by moving further a field and get by on tougher to digest items such as seeds and vegetative plant parts. When you resort to feeding with chick grower feeds you will have to step up watch for health issues caused by parasites that thrive under cool / wet conditions. Even with best commercially available diets, chicks reared on them are inferior relative to those grown on natural forages with respect to feathering and possibly overall condition.
     
  9. HEChicken

    HEChicken Overrun With Chickens

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    My Coop
    I agree with Cetrarchid. When I have a hen go broody in winter I let her hatch only because I don't want her sitting throughout winter if she doesn't break broody. With the hen mentioned earlier though, I gave her only one egg because a) I didn't really want chicks that time of year and b) she is a bantam cochin and while she can cover many newly hatched chicks, as they grow, it would be harder and harder for her to cover them, and in winter they'll need to be covered for longer than other times of the year, especially at night. The chick she hatched is now a huge, strapping rooster - a phenomenal example of his breed - but that said, I don't go out of my way to hatch in the winter months.
     

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