Our first incubation attempt!

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by coops gone crazy, Jan 11, 2012.

  1. coops gone crazy

    coops gone crazy In the Brooder

    Jan 4, 2012
    Hi all- this is my first 'real' post other then the new member one. We have raised our hens from 3 day old chicks last spring. One of the silver laced wyandotte hens went broody on us and I was trying to get her over it and finally decided....lets let her hatch some chicks. That led to concerns she would quit part way....which led to building an ice chest incubator as a backup plan thanks to the BYC webpages. Now we are going to hatch some in the incubator (hopefully) and (hopefully) a few under her. We are working the kinks out- just redesigned the 'cat litter bucket turned nest box' in her dog kennel home in the existing coop. Worried she may not stick but I gave her one of our unfertilzed eggs today and she has been mothering it all day. Fingers crossed. The incubator seems to be holding at around 100 +/- 1 and about 40% humidity. We picked up our eggs today and they are sitting next to me as I type......into the incubator tonight.....hopefully a hatch on my oldest son's birthday night or close. We are going to watch the broody hen for a day or two then if it looks good sneak a few under her. The dozen eggs are: 2 lavender ameraucana, 2 black/blue/splash ameraucana, 4 delaware, 4 lavender orpingtons. Wish us luck!


  2. Kevin565

    Kevin565 Crowing Premium Member

    Dec 22, 2009
    Hope it goes well [​IMG]
  3. weimarmama

    weimarmama Crowing

    Jun 4, 2010
    My Coop
    Good luck and hope you have a great hatch [​IMG]
  4. nicola86

    nicola86 In the Brooder

    good luck :) i have my fingers crossed for you

  5. Sharisr32

    Sharisr32 Egg Killer ;)

    Jan 14, 2007
    OH/PA Boarder
    Hope it goes well Hatching Dust ************************
  6. Want Less

    Want Less Songster

    Mar 24, 2010
    New Bern, NC
    Good luck! We're half through our first too... countdown to hatch day has begun and we're excited! I like your homemade incubator [​IMG]
  7. silkymom1986

    silkymom1986 The Silkie Villa

    Sep 28, 2011
    Byhalia, MS
    Good hatching vibes to you!!! [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] Keep us updated on your hatch!!!

  8. coops gone crazy

    coops gone crazy In the Brooder

    Jan 4, 2012
    Thanks- the incubator seems to be working well so far. The broody hen- not so much! Not sure what I'm going to do with her. She doesn't like being in the kennel but if I let her out she runs right back and sits in her old nest box. I tried locking her out of the coop for a few days in a row and it didn't break her broodiness (spelling?). So- I can't get her settled enough to put eggs under her but I can't get her to stop brooding and am worried because she barely eats or gets up when she's in her nest box. Maybe in a couple more days she will settle?
  9. Pocket Money Poultry Farm

    Pocket Money Poultry Farm Chirping

    Dec 10, 2011
    Matthews, IN
    I have the same digital thermometer and hydrometer as you. Mine too has different readings on the outdoor & indoor temps even though it’s in the same air. Mine has a difference of 8 degrees higher on the indoor temp. Upon calibrating it I found that on mine the outdoor temp was closes to the correct temp. The humidity was off by 6% on the low side.

    Wyandotte’s usually make good setters & mothers. I have a Columbian Wyandotte that went broody at 8 months of age. I too, wasn’t sure about her so I let her set on 4 eggs. She hatched out all four and mothered them until the chicks where two months of age.

    Good Luck to you on your first incubation and with your Wyandotte Hen. Keep us posted on their progress.

  10. IroquoisEgg

    IroquoisEgg Songster

    May 30, 2010
    Fair Oaks, CA
    Just let her sit on the eggs in the nest she chose..I went through this same thing last spring. I was so worried the other hens would hurt the chicks when they hatched and the nest was high off the ground in the coop. But the others didn't really care at all..in fact we had a couple "aunties" who would look after the eggs when mama wanted to eat or drink. I also put a little dish and water in for her and then took it out when she was done eating. Hubby built a ladder...and actually thinking back-the chicks hatch but don't come out from under mama for 2-3 days and she was vicious if I tried poking around trying to get a peek!! If another hen came around while out in the yard she would puff up spread her wings around babies and make an awful noise-pretty much scaring the daylights out of the poor hens! I finally calmed down after that first broody and realized this has been going on for hundreds of years and mama knows what she is doing-a heck of lot more than me! It is amazing and so much easier than incubating-let her do the work and she has picked her nest and just try to accommodate that location. Try not to worry it will all work out beautifully.

    Wanted to add that yes, she will lose weight, but she will get up and eat when she has to and in our case others would go and sit on the eggs usually laying one too..so make sure yours are marked! Lesson learned...
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2012

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