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I have just accidently killed a chick embryo

(9 Posts)
MillyR Fri 14-Oct-11 18:55:30

I have just cleared out eggs from an old coop. I thought they were old eggs, but when I threw them out I found that one of them had an embryo in it. A hen has just gone into the old coop and appears to be intending to stay in there for the night.

Now I feel really bad because it must have been sitting on some eggs, although I am half glad I have thrown them out because some were old and rotten.

Will it now start all over again, laying and sitting on them, as it seems to have moved in there? If it does, what I am going to do about new chicks in November, by which time it might be snowing?

I am thinking that if we do end up with new chicks, I could move chicks and hen down to our cellar (it has a window and heating).

Daveschooks Sat 15-Oct-11 22:45:30

Please discourage h from sitting. Take the eggs daily and do not allow her to brood them. They will be hatched and growing during the coldest period of the year. Growers need natural light and ranging in order to develop well. Let her sit when it gets to April.

Check out the hatching checks section of the omlet forum for more info.

mummymeister Sat 15-Oct-11 23:51:13

I agree a brood late on in the year nearly always ends in tears for one reason or another. now you know where she lays go and take them every day. shame i know but you can encourage her back to the same spot in the spring with china eggs and the chicks will have much more of a chance. and don't feel guilty about the embryo's. if you have hens and cockerels then this is always a possibility even with ones that you take and eat every day. sorry not meant to sound brutal but there it is. good luck - spring is only a few months away ( i say this to cheer myself up!!)

Daveschooks Sun 16-Oct-11 08:50:49

My current brood were very late, but it was too late to stop her (I candled the eggs I found her on and they were well developed). My little lot are currently 5 weeks oldandcosy with their mum in a sheltered spot. I also have someone who will take only cockerels, I'm sure that you have considered this. In my last two hatches there has been a 70% cockerel rate!

mummymeister Sun 16-Oct-11 16:16:01

Dave that is about right for boy girl ratio. once we had 12 hatch all boys! last time i had 6 hatch - one died at 2 days, and 2 outside in the broody coop. the remaining 3 are all girls - 2 buffs and a lilac aracuana/poland.

Daveschooks Sun 16-Oct-11 18:59:31

Sounds gorgeous meister. I've out mine into their more shelttered winter run accommodation today with their mum. They look so cosy.

MissBeehiving Mon 17-Oct-11 20:07:05

I hatch from February onwards using incubators and inside brooding until the weather warms up. I stop around the end of September because it's just easier to breed coming into the warmer weather if you are limited on inside space. BUT one of the most successful breeders of exhibition poultry I knew started in November and bred through to about June. You need the inside space though and the chicks would need to be on heat for so much longer.

MillyR Tue 18-Oct-11 14:34:50

Thanks everyone for the replies. I really do not want chicks right now because this would be our first lot, and I would rather have everything on my side in terms of weather.

Dave, why does the person you know take only cockerels? I have been pondering the cockerel situation, and I think we could only reasonably keep one cockerel in addition to the one we already have, given the number of chickens.

mummymeister Thu 20-Oct-11 15:51:23

We either give our cockerels away to people who have lost theres or the only other option is to give them to someone for their pot (couldnt eat them myself!) Have not yet resorted to shooting them but no somone who does. at the risk of upsetting dave this is all your spare boys are useful for i am afraid.

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