How many days does the chicken incubate eggs and how to care for the brood hen?
You can update your chicken stock not only by buying birds at a market or farm, but also by laying eggs under a brood hen. In order to get chickens in a natural way, carefully study the conditions of keeping and hatching.
How many days does a chicken incubate chickens?
The hatching process takes 21 days. To control the formation of embryos, there is an ovoscope, which is taken on days 7, 11 and 18. To study the eggs, they choose the time when the brood hen has moved away from the nest. Starting from day 19, the chicks can already hatch. The quality of the eggs and the way they are stored may slightly change the hatching time.
How to choose a brood hen
Not all hens have maternal instinct. There are 3 types:
- with instinct for incubation and care for chicks;
- with a weakened instinct, when the bird sits on its eggs, but spontaneously can leave the clutch;
- birds that do not have a hatching instinct (leghorns, various crosses and industrial hybrids).
Did you know? Outbred domestic hens, which have a strong instinct and sufficient mass to shelter the masonry, are often the best hens.
- make specific sounds (kvokhchut);
- pluck feathers and feathers, line their nest with them;
- do not want to leave the nest;
- demonstrate a decrease in egg production.
Having noticed such signs, it is necessary to plant the chicken on the eggs, "tricks" and make sure that it does not throw the clutch. If you did not find a suitable bird, you can take a proven old chicken and fix it with a basket or box in a nest with tricks. The chicken is taken out only for food and toilet. After 5–7 days, the brood hen should whine, otherwise they will take another chicken.
Important! The mother hen must be completely healthy! Before planting, you need to make sure that there are no parasites and treat the feathers with preparations or ash.
Before landing in the nest, the chicken should eat well. The optimal landing time is night or late evening to reduce stress.
Video: How to choose laying hens and see if the chicken is flying
The best base for the nest is a wooden box with ventilation or a wicker basket. The nest is located in a calm place where no one will bother the chicken. The universal size is 35x55 cm. To protect against rats, the nest can be located at a low height.
A layer of fresh, clean straw is laid in the nest, which the hen then tamps on its own and decomposes as desired, adding fluff and feathers.In the center, make indentations and lay 10-15 selected eggs. The number of eggs is selected according to the size of the brood hen, since the bird must reliably close and warm the clutch.
When there is no hen, the litter must be inspected and, if contaminated, replaced.
Egg selection and preparation
For effective incubation, eggs are taken that meet the following criteria:
- from healthy and sexually mature (over 7 months) chicken;
- not older than 6–7 days and storage at +15 ... + 20 ° С and humidity 75%;
- clean and whole, medium sized.
Care for the brood during the brooding period
The chicken should not be disturbed at the beginning of the process, because due to noise or irritants, it can leave the clutch. A similar regime is maintained at the end of incubation.
Important! It happens that the chicken separates from the masonry or buries the egg. It should be checked for viability.
What to do with the brood immediately after hatching
It is necessary to prepare a warm box, in which the born chickens are immediately cleaned, and the others wait until they hatch. Nestlings should not be in a draft, so you need to cover the box, put a heating pad down, and put a blanket on top. A small hole is left for ventilation, and the temperature is maintained at +30 ° C. Dry chickens are returned to the brood hen. For the first feed you need millet, boiled chopped yolk and fresh water.
Did you know? Chickens can hatch not only their eggs, but also other birds (ducks, geese, swans)