More eggs keep arriving keeping them seperate

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by superbouncyball, Aug 23, 2014.

  1. superbouncyball

    superbouncyball Chirping

    Apr 5, 2014
    North East PA
    Ok so 4 days ago I discovered one of my hens had made a nest in the Barn out side the Coup. She had 1 dozen eggs in the nest. It was never my intention to hatch eggs but at this point I will give it a try.

    It was suggested to me that I move the eggs to a nest box. I did this. the next day the eggs were scattered all over the nest box and there were now 14 eggs.

    Today when I checked I discovered 17 eggs and one of the hens had moved most of the eggs to a nice tidy spot in the nest so maybe I have a hen that is thinking about sitting on them when she is ready.

    I was considering getting an incubator if none of the hens decided to sit on these soon. at this point though there are now 17 eggs in there. is there a way I can mark the eggs so I know the old ones from the new ones? Would like to have eggs to eat too.:)

    It was also suggested to take the hen that made the nest and put her and the eggs in a dog type create.

    So my questions are:

    can I mark the eggs and if so how?

    How long do I wait before getting an incubator and moving the eggs to it?

    Then finally any suggestion on an incubator. One that rotates the eggs and such. would be nice if it had the option for larger egg trays and smaller egg trays too.

  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Free Ranging

    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    I use a majic marker because the eggs are so dark. If your eggs are lighter, use pencil.
    Most egg trays are universal for chickens/ducks/pheasant etc..
    If the hen has been sitting on them just let her finish the task.
    Separate housing is a good idea so volunteer eggs don't come along. The hen and chicks need different food also.

  3. iwiw60

    iwiw60 Crowing

    Jan 27, 2014
    Central Oregon
    At this point I'd move both the real broody and the eggs to a separate area where the other hens cannot "contribute" to the pile you are obviously getting. Did you mark the eggs when you moved the original nest? If you did that's great, remove all the other eggs and let her be. If you haven't done the 'broody hen' thing yet here's a page with some great info for you:
    Best of luck and keep us updated!
  4. superbouncyball

    superbouncyball Chirping

    Apr 5, 2014
    North East PA
    Ok Sorry maybe I was not clear at this point I do not have a broody hen. no one is sitting on them period. I do suspect though that one of the hens re arranged the eggs last night though so there is a chance I may have a broody hen but that is yet to be for seen.

    did not mark the eggs as I did not know if I could or not. but I will at least mark the 17 that I have.

    Since I do not have a broody hen. how long do I wait for one to decide to sit on these before I move them to a incubator?

    Further since it does appear that one hen re arranged the eggs last night and left 4 of the eggs out or the re arrangement should I leave them where they are or move them to the nest too. I'm assuming I may have a broody hen and she has decided this is how many eggs she wants in her nest and the others are too many.
  5. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Crossing the Road

    Mar 15, 2010
    On the MN prairie.
    You do not have a broody. A broody hen would be sitting on the nest all day and all night. If the eggs were rearranged at night, it wasn't a hen doing it. They are sleeping at night. Hens can't count, and a truly broody hen will sit on as many egg as end up in her nest. If you want to hatch these eggs, I'd just get an incubator and do it. Do you have room for them all in your coop over winter? Do you have a plan for the extra cockerels you will end up with? Do you have a place to grow the chicks out until they're big enough to go in with your adult birds? These are all things you need to have a plan for BEFORE you hatch any chicks out.
  6. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon

    When I'm "baiting" a nest to try to temp a broody, I usually use about 8 eggs. I mark them with a sharpie and leave them on the nest. This allows me to collect any fresh laid eggs every day, while still keeping a full nest to see if it will help trigger those hormones to flow. I just put them where ever the birds are laying. Sometimes they get scattered around, sometimes they get broken, sometimes they just up and vanish. But sometimes a hen will decide to start setting [​IMG]. When that happens, I leave the bait eggs there until she's been on the nest at least two nights on a row. When I think she's acting broody, I start collecting the eggs I want to put under her. Once I have the clutch I want her to hatch, I just go out at night, pull the bait eggs and put the desired eggs under her. I also mark them with a sharpie, cause broody hens are notorious for stealing eggs to add to a clutch [​IMG] and I don't want staggered hatches.

    I've been able to leave bait eggs in a nest for several weeks with no problems. You'll smell them if they start going bad, just toss them and replace with fresh.

    Agree on having a plan for the birds you hatch out. Nothing's sadder than the "I hatched out a bunch of cockerels and I love them and don't want anyone to eat them ever but I sure can't keep them" posts.
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2014
    1 person likes this.
  7. superbouncyball

    superbouncyball Chirping

    Apr 5, 2014
    North East PA
    Awesome thanks. I did not get out to the coup today until after 11am so they were awake this am and could have re arranged the nest. but regardless. I think an incubator may be the trick here.

    As for room in the coup there is plenty of room and if I get more roosters I have places (good places) for them to go if needed.

    Plenty of room in the barn and chicken run to grow out the new little ones

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