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Looking for breeding tips

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by AmieD, Nov 19, 2016.

  1. AmieD

    AmieD Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hi, I'd like to incubate my first round of chicks so they would hatch around Christmas. I have 2 RIR cockerels. They are about 6 months old and mate the pullets regularly, but don't always connect. I just started checking, but haven't identified fertile eggs yet. I also have an Olive Egger cockerel who is about 5 months old. He just started crowing and mating about a month ago.The other boys sometimes run him off when he tries to mate. Any suggestions on how to increase fertility? I've seen breeding pens, and I'm wondering if that's the way to go. My chickens stay in my fenced in backyard and I have three different coops,so I could put together a temporary breeding pen. I am open to any of the males fertilizing the eggs, but the OE would be my preferred chicken daddy. Thanks for your suggestions.
     
  2. Wyatt0224

    Wyatt0224 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If you want the OE to be the father of the chicks then yes you want to do breeding pens. He might be a tad to young to be fertile but if you want to hatch chicks around Christmas you have a little bit of time left.
     
  3. Wyatt0224

    Wyatt0224 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If you want the OE to be the father of the chicks then yes you want to do breeding pens. He might be a tad to young to be fertile but if you want to hatch chicks around Christmas you have a little bit of time left.
     
  4. AmieD

    AmieD Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks. Do you think the RIRs are old enough to be fertile now?
     
  5. AmieD

    AmieD Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well, this morning 's breakfast is 3/4 fertile eggs, so that answered my question!!! I'm very excited.
     
  6. Wyatt0224

    Wyatt0224 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That's very good news to hear. And yes your RIR cockerels are most likely fertile.
     
  7. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    You'll need to separate the RIR cockerels away from the pullets for 3-4 weeks to ensure the OE is the sire.

    Are you in a warm part of the world?
    Just curious about hatching chicks in the middle of winter(where I live)
     
  8. AmieD

    AmieD Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for the tip.
    Yes, it's pretty warm here in Central Georgia. It was in the upper 60's this afternoon. I grew up in VT, so I am familiar with cold weather - and I don't miss it. We do get a dusting of snow every year or so and my kids like to "sled" down our hill on cardboard boxes, we build tiny snowmen, and have tiny snowball fights. This morning, it was in the mid 30's and my 8 year-old went outside with his winter jacket and hood on and came inside certain that he had frost bite on his ears. lol.
    As for the chicks, I will keep them inside in a brooder and the move them to the garage before transitioning them outside.
     
    1 person likes this.
  9. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    What criteria are you using to determine if the eggs are fertile?

    I'm pretty experienced with birds, and I have a hard time telling quite often. Not that my eyes are the best, but it can be pretty darn subtle. I simply go on....if he's mating, they're fertile. One mating can fertilize the hen for a good two weeks. I've had young cockerels handle up to two dozen hens and keep me in all the fertile eggs I could hatch. So, if you want a particular sire, set up a pen now. If you don't care so much, just collect eggs for a week or so, however long it takes to get as many as you want to set. Plus a few extra, of course, just in case [​IMG].
     
  10. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Hahaha!! This cracked me up!

    I lived in FLA for a time....I'll take the cold and snow, that heat just kills me.
     

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