Turkey egg incubating timing.

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by doubleyolks, Jan 3, 2013.

  1. doubleyolks

    doubleyolks New Egg

    Mar 31, 2008
    Winchester Ohio
    Would like turkey eggs to hatch in groups, how do I preserve the eggs until I have a batch to start incubating. Last year I just put them in each day and I kept a journal. 23 out of 25 hatched. My Tom was killed by coyotes so the last couple probably didn't hatch as I keep collecting up to a week after his murder. Yes I was upset. Coyote got some shot in his butt a couple of days later when he went after my chickens. Haven't seen him since but the damage is done. Thanks for any help.
  2. Celie

    Celie Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 23, 2012
    Tickfaw, Louisiana
    Sorry to hear your tom got killed. We have fox and wolves around here, so I always keep a couple "Spare" toms and roos. I use bullets on these kind of varmint that even a wound will eventually kill the beast! I don't like anything to suffer, but I am tired of feeding predators. Coons and possum, are easy to kill with one shot, but a large wolf or similar large predator, sometimes needs more than one shot, unless you use ammo that will do the job with just one.
    If your hen was laying before your hen got taken, or shortly after, you can hold them for up to 10 days at 50 to 55 degrees or thereabouts, but they need to be turned several times a day. I suggest an odd number, like 3,5,7, so they will not stay in the same position every night while you are asleep. I put them into a carton, larger side up, and secure it well with rubber bands, just in case, and lean the carton against a surface like a wall, and just turn it to the opposite end 180 degrees every few hours. I personally prefer to write the expected hatch date on the larger side of the egg and put it into the incubator as soon as it is gathered, because I think the fresher the egg, the stronger the hatchling. But that's just me.
    I had my first turkey egg hatch out today and have about 50 more to follow. I don't think all of these are fertile, because I have not separated the extra toms yet, and they are still getting their pecking order straight. I also had 3 chicks hatch and 3 more poults, peeping, in their shells. I use a Sportsmen 1503 with 3 incubating shelves, 2 trays to a shelf and 30 or more eggs to a tray. I keep putting in eggs by date order and when it gets to 2 days before the date on the egg, I move it to the bottom hatching tray. When it gets 5 days past the date on the egg, I throw it out. I have never tried to hatch an egg older than 5 days old, so I can not tell you how long the actually stay viable, but all the books say 19 days and I know a hen will lay for about 10 days or so, turning the eggs every hour or so, before she stays on them and starts to hatch them. My chicken hens, when they go broody, will steal all the eggs she can from other hens she gets to lay in the same nest and may start hatching in a couple days when she has 20 to 30 eggs. I hope this helps! Others may do it differently, but all I can tell you is this is the way I do it. I get about 96 to 98 % hatch rate with chickens and ducks and about 80 to 90% with turkeys.[​IMG]
  3. ProfTi

    ProfTi Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 30, 2012
    Minneapolis, MN
    Sorry about the Tom :(. I would be devastated. The hatching loses about 2%/day after 3 days. I have had great luck with eggs as old as 16 days. I hope you get a good hatch.
  4. mamawolf544

    mamawolf544 Unbreakable Heart

    Apr 29, 2009
    alvarado, Tx
    Sorry about your tom.

    I keep all the eggs from chickens, guineas, turkeys and only fill the incubators every Sunday. That way I have a week in between hatches.
    I just keep my eggs in turners, in a dark room, where it is cool.
    But Egg cartons tilted from side to side will work just fine.
  5. frank53061

    frank53061 Chillin' With My Peeps

    I have heard this story time and time again some one blogging about having there one and only Tom dieing and I am very sorry for the loss of your Tom.
    At this time I have too Meany Toms right now but I will reduce my numbers to 2 Toms for breeding purposes because of the stories of people loosing there one and only Tom.
    This does not mean that Murphy's Law will not kick in and a disaster happens and I loose both Toms but may be not [​IMG]
    I am so care full that when I let the Turkeys out to free range I keep a few in the pen this does two things the roaming flock does not go far from the ones in the pen and and the ones in the Pen are safer than the ones roaming.
    If a heard of vicious Turtles come stampeding threw and wiping out the free rangers at least I would have a few left safe in the Pen Hens and Toms.
    At night they get locked into Fort Turkey Knox.
    Again I am very sorry for the Loss of your Tom I hope you are able to replace him or maybe 2 more.

    Best of luck with the Hatching of the Poults.
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2013
  6. doubleyolks

    doubleyolks New Egg

    Mar 31, 2008
    Winchester Ohio
    Just wanted to thank everyone for their help. I am going to try incubating chicken eggs first by holding them at 50-55 degrees and adding them to the incubator every week like suggested.

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