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Very much a newby question about incubating

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Smile, Apr 21, 2008.

  1. Smile

    Smile Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 27, 2007
    Bonner Springs, KS
    I have had chickens for about 2 years (well, we bought day-old chicks 2 years ago)...and I was thinking about eventually incubating. I have read the stickys here and done a little googling on the subject. But, I still have a few questions.

    1) How old is the hen that lays the fertilized eggs? I have read the egg should be not "too small and not too big", but what does that mean? Our oldest hens are 1 year old. (The 2 year old, compeltely free-range hens got carried off by a racoon.) For that matter, how old is the roo? Does age matter in that department?

    2) Genetic line. How do I know the roo is not a brother of some of the other hens we have? I think he probably might be...we got a bunch at a feed store of the same breed on the same day, so do you think he is from the same parent as the other hens? So how do would I keep the genetic line ok as continue to incubate once I did find an appropriate roo? For instance, if I got a new roo however often? How long does a roo "last"?

    3) Why don't incubators look like nests?

    Thanks in advance!!![​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2008
  2. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    If a hen is mated by the roo and lays eggs, in theory they can be fertile. Just pic eggs that are uniform and aren't itty bitty pullet eggs to give the chicks the best chance at hatch. Age shouldn't be too big of an issue as long as the bids are healthy.

    You don't know if the roo is a sibling, and in the short term, it's not that big of an issue... in the long term, in breeding can bring out bad traits too. If they are feed store bids, unlikly to be brother and sister due to large number of eggs and chicks hatched. A roo will last as long as they are healthy and can woo the hens.

    Probably because humans like squares as it is an efficient use of materials to make things out of. Easy to make, easy to ship, although there are some exceptoins to the square bator thing, such as the R com and octagon. Humans have a propensity to like things "sterile" even if that's not the best thing.
     
  3. Smile

    Smile Out Of The Brooder

    10
    0
    22
    Jun 27, 2007
    Bonner Springs, KS
    Thanks so much! That was very helpful.
     

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