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PostPosted: Wed Jul 20, 2016 11:30 pm 
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Dapper Duck
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Firstly, I hope I have placed this in the right section, Husbandry is the closest heading I could think of.

I have a multi pronged, multi barreled, multi faceted question/s please bear with me.

Background.
We have a small flock, 2 x black leghorns, 1 x ISA brown, 1 x Wyandotte + 1 wyandotte cockerel (that is being re-homed). The initial aim was to have around 6 chooks, 1 per kid (4 kids) plus a couple extras. As the cockerel will be moving on we will be back down to 4. For no other reason than because we have come to like the Wyandotte breed & wishing to bolster the flock with extra Wyandottes. Both Wyandotte hen and cockerel are young birds (approx 7 months old).

It appears that the cockerel is servicing both the ISA and the Wyandotte hen. I know i need to get several things (fertile eggs, broody hen etc etc) to fall into place before progression can be made but I am considering collecting eggs from the Wyandotte and place under a broody hen. Believe it or not my leghorns (1 more than the other) went broody at the drop of a hat, regularly, last spring/summer/autumn. I have been attempting to do plenty of research before asking these questions but some I need advice, cant find the answer easily, or just unsure if I am heading in somewhat the right direction.

Questions
1. How long after being serviced does a hens eggs become fertile & how long does she remain fertile? (need to move on the cockerel pretty soon, placated the neighbors saying a home is being found and I have knocked up a rough and ready rooster box) I do have some photos of current eggs and will need some help determining if they are fertile or not.
Apparently i can get access to Wyandotte fertile eggs down the track through a "friend of a friend" approx 1hr45min away (driving doesn't worry me)

2. Continue with current plan and try and encourage a hen to go broody now, even though not optimal time?

3. Reading in several places that egg viability drops after around 5 days? If I was to collect for a week (7 days) for a reasonable clutch would that be too bad?

4. Should I not bother at this stage as both birds are reasonably young?

5. Am I better off waiting for spring and attempting to get (from the friend of a friend) fertile eggs under a broody then?

Any additional thought and comments would be welcomed. I am sure I had more questions but that's all I can think of atm.


Cheers
Gavin


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 21, 2016 6:45 am 
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Fiesty Fowl
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Eggs up to ten days will still be viable, but without a hen being broody now will be futile, you could save them up and then place in one of the layer boxes as sometimes when the egg number builds up a hen will decide to go broody, i have had this happen when been on holidays and the relly looking after them couldn't be bothered with collecting the eggs. If you try whats the worst that can happen you waste 10 eggs , no big deal.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 21, 2016 11:05 am 
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Old Mother Goose
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Hi Gavin and welcome.
If the rooster has been working then the eggs will b fertile. I generally assume that 3 days of action is sufficient for a hen to be laying fertile eggs. Providing they are stored properly and turned regularly, fertile eggs should stay viable for up to 2 weeks although up to 10 days is the general rule of thumb.
A hen can continue to lay fertile eggs for about 3 weeks after mating so if you are prepared to discard eggs as they age and keep the freshest for a couple of weeks (mark the older ones and return them to the nest - at this time of the year they will not 'go off'), in the hope of a broody you may have a chance. A hen is programmed to lay a clutch (no. varies from hen to hen), and then to go broody.
Wyandottes are notorious for being committed broodies so if all else fails you should be able to bring is fertile eggs in the future.
Be warned that if you take on Wyandottes as a breed you will need a plan to 'break them' of regular broodiness.
You may not need a Rooster Box but you WILL need a Sin Bin :aaargh:


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 21, 2016 2:12 pm 
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Old Mother Goose
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In Wyandottes the rosecomb sperm aren't long lived, so for me the hen will only be laying viable eggs for 6-10 days after the rooster is gone,






Ron

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 21, 2016 4:03 pm 
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Golden Robin
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I doubt a seven month old wyandotte is going to go broody in the short term. She needs to be in full laying for a while before the broody hormones kick in. Five months will take you through to December but if its hot where you are Dec/Jan are not good brooding months. March is a likely time for her to go broody.

Funny thing about chooks (wyandottes especially) is that when you want them to go broody they wont, when its not a good time for you they will be stubbornly broody. Leaving some plastic eggs the nesting box encourages them to lay in the nest and sometimes helps to encourage broodiness if all the other factors are right but its still a hormonal change that needs some triggers beyond our normal control.

Mike

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 21, 2016 9:38 pm 
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Dapper Duck
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Cheers for the responses so far

I'm not expecting a broody, it's more live in hope [emoji4] this is currently really one of those projects if it all falls into place good, if not, no dramas.

Also tbh I was thinking of trying to encourage one of my leghorns to go broody as they seemed to go broody easily.

Good to know about the eggs and fertility.

Already had to incorporate a broody pen last season, so got the broodiness covered lol. Also already have a dodged up rooster box to help keep the neighbours a little happier until he is moved to his new home.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 25, 2016 4:34 pm 
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Golden Phoenix
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Broodiness in those hens prone to going broody tends to be triggered by extended light hours, warmth, and a nest full of eggs. In the cooler areas of Australia, right now is the wrong time to be looking for broodies (not impossible, of course, but much less likely).

There's always the chance that your Wyandotte will go broody before the Leghorns, which may cause issues with collecting enough eggs to set under her. You can always hatch the Wyandotte x ISA or Leghorn eggs though (it's most likely he's servicing all the birds, even if you haven't seen him on the Leggies). Not pures, of course, but will be very pretty crossbreeds.

Note that if you hatch your own eggs, you are going to get more roosters, and so will need a plan for dealing with them. Even purebred Wyandotte cockerels can be difficult to shift, depending on your location and the needs of the people around you.

You could always just try to buy a couple of Wyandotte pullets when the time's right ...?


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 25, 2016 5:18 pm 
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Dapper Duck
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Cheers infoaddict

Realised chances are low, nothing ventured nothing gained, I am not perturbed if nothing falls into place was just trying to make the best out of a less than ideal situation.

Hadn't considered the crossbreeds, I know he is servicing the ISA, considering it's only an internal project, might just think about that.

Regarding chicks & future cockerels, fully aware of those chances and would have no issues moving them on as their future would be fully explained to the kids, I'm just trying to avoid the pot for our current boy as he is a fully integrated pet.

All in all buying another pullet (or two for flock integration) in the future is not off the cards. Thought I'd give it a try & give the kids another education on the circle of life.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 28, 2016 3:24 pm 
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Dapper Duck
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Ok, I have spent some time googling, but as a nervous beginner into this area, I would like some confirmation either way about the following two eggs, are they fertile? I'm reasonable confident they are.

Image

Image

I appreciate your patience and advice, thank you.

Cheers
Gavin


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 28, 2016 3:42 pm 
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Old Mother Goose
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:yess :chickbounce :chickbounce :chickbounce


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 28, 2016 4:07 pm 
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Dapper Duck
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:woot: :wee :nuts :th


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 28, 2016 9:45 pm 
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Golden Swan
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:wee :woot: Yes they look good to me too!

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 28, 2016 10:45 pm 
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Dapper Duck
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Well that is 1 box ticked, now lets see if I can encourage a broody :clnava :mmaad :laughing


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 30, 2016 11:54 pm 
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Gallant Game
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An alternative to the broody is an incubator.

if you are just looking to get a few chooks each year to keep you stocks steady a small incubator should be adequate.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 31, 2016 12:35 am 
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Dapper Duck
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I have considered that option but I'm under the false impression that this is going to be a one time thing. I don't really wish to fork out for a cheap incubator that can have varied success & don't have the coin for a decent one, even if it was for more than a one time thing.


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