To incubate or not to incubate...

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Mountain Sunshine, Jan 1, 2010.

  1. Mountain Sunshine

    Mountain Sunshine Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yes I am new to the chicken world and I am learning. I have done so much reading and researching. I have read all of you talking about incubating the eggs and how to go about that. But, what about the natural way? I haven't read anything on letting the hen just sit on her eggs and letting them hatch like nature intended.
    Can anyone elaborate on this for me? Thanks a lot.
     
  2. OwensMom

    OwensMom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am new as well but I do know a few things. First, not all hens will sit on eggs. That would be the easy to get chicks!! Most people don't want broody hens because those hens Lay fewer eggs. am I right on that? So breeders are breeding this triat out. Again right? I am trying to decide how to get new chicks this spring and am considering an incubator. Which mountains do you live in. I am on the western slope of Colorado. Lynn
     
  3. Mountain Sunshine

    Mountain Sunshine Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:I am in the North GA mountains. (long way from you) I have so much to learn when it comes to chickens. but, I am loving every minute of it!
    What you said makes sense.

    Melissa
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2010
  4. davidb

    davidb Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I always keep a few game hens to put eggs under when they sit to me the feed is a lot cheaper than have a incubator and the hen will raise them until there 2 or 3 months old
     
  5. OwensMom

    OwensMom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    davidb-what breed are game hens? Do they always go broody? sounds better to me than aan incubator!!

    Melissa, chickens are the best. When our kids were little we grew all of our own food and they loved gathering eggs!!
     
  6. clarkai

    clarkai Out Of The Brooder

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    I prefer using a broody hen when possible, because it's soooooooo much easier and I don't have to worry about temperature, humidity, turning or any of that. I also can let the hen take care of feeding and watering once they are hatched, and I think that's so much easier (and less smelly) than using a brooder box. As mentioned, breeds which have been selected for laying eggs aren't going to go broody. Don't expect a leghorn or sexlinks to go broody is what I'm saying. On the other hand, there are breeds that do go broody quite often and are good mothers: cochins, silkies, old English games to name a few.
     
  7. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

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    In order to have a hen sit, you would need a breed that regularly goes broody.

    One of those is the Old English Game Bantam and it comes in many, many varieties.

    Some of the large fowl that go broody are any of the Orpingtons including Australorps, Partridge Rocks and many varieties of Cochin.

    Good luck!
     
  8. SilverPhoenix

    SilverPhoenix Bantam Fanatic

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    I've got a broody serama hen right now ([​IMG] for a successful hatch!), and I absolutely love watching broody hens do their thing. They're such great mothers! [​IMG]

    As others said, though, not all hens go broody, and even the hens that do, there's no way to predict or guarantee when they'll go broody. Hence why so many people use incubators. I'm getting an incubator myself because I can't rely on my hens to always feel broody or to be broody when I want them to be. That said, it's great when the hens do hatch their own.

    Best of luck with your researching and learning! It's amazing how deep and interesting the world of chickens is. I've been raising chickens for ten plus years and I'm constantly learning new things!
     
  9. Mountain Sunshine

    Mountain Sunshine Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:We just got some Opingtons...so that's good to hear!
     
  10. OwensMom

    OwensMom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    OK, so you can't leave some eggs in a box and have a broody hen sit on them? Hens go broody because of what? Daylight, hormones etc. but not necessarily a number of eggs? Can you induce broodyness? How can you order eggs if your hens are not predictable? Lynn
     

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