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We found a secret love nest.... now we wonder if they're viable eggs?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by JeepChicken, Nov 25, 2009.

  1. JeepChicken

    JeepChicken Hatching

    Jan 6, 2008
    Charlotte, MI
    Turns out, one of our hens has been laying all her eggs in a secret spot outside the coup and now she's brooding (is that right? she's sitting on them). Its a lovely old grain bin full of old hay and straw. But we're concerned that she may not have had access to them during the night. She's in the coop for evening chores. If she flew the coop after dark, she could get to them through another door, but would she be brave enough to do that? We've never hatched chicks before. Anyway, my questions are these: If she hasn't been sitting on them at night, is there any chance they'll still be able to hatch? And if so, how many days does she have to sit on them? Plus, its late November in Michigan.... things are going to be getting pretty cold around here for the next few months. Would she be able to keep the chicks alive in the grain bin on her own?
    I always get great answers to my questions from this group. I'm very thankful. Happy Thanksgiving!

  2. rebelcowboysnb

    rebelcowboysnb Confederate Money Farm

    If she is not on them almost 24/7 she is not trying to hatch them. When you find her in there at night then she is trying. It take 21 days to hatch an yes she should be able to keep them alive.
  3. farmin'chick

    farmin'chick Songster

    Apr 13, 2009
    Rocky Mount VA
    THey collect their eggs for a while before they really start "sitting" on them -- keep an eye on her or put her in a broody nest with her eggs and see what happens.
  4. Megs

    Megs Songster

    Aug 19, 2009
    agree with other posters, the hen will stockpile eggs until shes happy with the ammount, once she decides she has enough to incubate (go broody) on them she wont get off (expect maybe a few mins a day to eat, depends on the hen)

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