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Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by chickbram, Jan 10, 2016.

  1. chickbram

    chickbram Just Hatched

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    Good Afternoon,
    I am fairly new to raising chickens. I am a retired teacher and have incubated eggs for my students for about 25 years. However I haven't really raised them myself. So I've started this journey of raising them back in the summer. Here is it winter and I believe they are ready for the cold weather. However, I have a question for the long-timers at doing this. I have a yr old silkie who laid her first egg this week. Actually she has laid two now. I have left the eggs out in her box. Now I really would like to hatch them, that is my first question, will they hatch in winter? I live in Alabama and our weather is in 40s during the day and going down to freezing for the next few nights. She hasn't started laying on them during the day so they won't hatch unless she is sitting on them all the time right? I've heard that she will start sitting when she has laid a bunch of eggs so how do I know that she is going to sit on them?
    Thank you for any replies!!
     
  2. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

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    Silkies are generally known as great broody hens. BUT, not all of them have the inclination to do so. Hatchery silkies probably have had it bred out of them. While silkie breeders would want to take advantage of that trait. You cannot make a silkie go broody. When they want to sit on eggs and hatch them they will do so. I would think since she has just laid two eggs she is still figuring out how to do that.

    After she has been laying for a time, she may decide to go broody and you will know because she won't get off the nest and will hiss or growl and puff up large, if you try to take her eggs. If you put "Broody hen," in the search box, more info will pop up.
     
  3. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

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    PS Forgot to mention if you don't have a rooster running around with her, her eggs will not be fertile. They will not hatch regardless of any heroic attempts.
     
  4. CherriesBrood

    CherriesBrood Chicken Photographer

    Hello and :welcome
    We are glad you joined us!

    I have hatched eggs with one of my old teachers years a go! It was such a neat experience! As regarding to your question the eggs can hatch if you have a rooster fertilizing the eggs, but I would not recommend hatching them this time of the year because of how cold it gets. The mother can not provide enough warmth for them on her own, so you would have to put a heat lamp in there with her and the babies. The hen will store the eggs up until she gets enough eggs to incubate, but she HAS to be broody. She can start laying all these eggs and making a nest of them, but she won't hatch them unless she goes broody. Also I would not recommend hatching her first week of eggs that she lays because first time layers eggs will most of the time have something wrong with them. For example some can not have yolks or others will have deformities when they hatch. Another fact to consider is the hen can only handle 13 chicks in one hatch at a time that are her size, if she's a bantam she can only handle 6 big chicks, or 12 bantam chicks. I hope this helps.
    Once again :welcome
     
  5. chickbram

    chickbram Just Hatched

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    Yes Cherriesbrood this does help. I kinda felt the same as you told me but guess I needed someone to tell me. I live in the city and am just waiting until someone comes and tells me to get rid of my rooster which is why I was wanting to be able to get some chicks before that happens. The lady that gave me the chicks said I had all hens but turns out I have 2 roosters and 1 hen from that group. Im attached and hate to get rid of the roosters but I'm sure I will have to soon.
    Another question, by broody you are meaning the chicken sitting on the eggs right?
    Thank you so much!!
     
  6. chicklover 1998

    chicklover 1998 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Welcome to BYC yes broody means sitting on the eggs as in brooding them its how I remember broody and it would be a good idea to let her lay eggs for couple weeks maybe a couple months before you begin to think about trying to hatch some good luck and I hope you get some cute peepers.
     
  7. BantamFan4Life

    BantamFan4Life LOOK WHAT YOU MADE ME DO. Premium Member

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    Welcome to BYC! I'm glad you joined us! :)
     
  8. Urban Flock

    Urban Flock Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Welcome to BYC! I agree with waiting until warmer weather to hatch any. If you can hold on just a few months that will make a big difference. When your hen does go broody there will be no doubt about it. She will puff up and scream at you to get away. LOL
    Good luck with your new adventure, just one word of caution....its addictive. Have fun and enjoy!
     
  9. CherriesBrood

    CherriesBrood Chicken Photographer


    Yes I mean that. :)
     

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