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breaking all the rules

so im really keen on getting another cockerel and against my better judgement decided the best way would be to hatch one .
so Sally has been broody for past 10 days or so so i bought 6 eggs off ebay
problem number one ....i cant cull or rehome any cockerels so if i end up with more than 2 males ive got problems
rule break number one ....just gave 2 eggs to Sally so ill end up with either 2 cocks or 2 hens or one of each or none at all...... i can cope with any of those to one degree or another
problem number 2...daughter now wants more silkies !!!!!!!!!!!!!!
rule break number 2 ...give in to daughter and agree to silkie eggs if my 2 dont work at all
problem number 3 ...little silkie goes ultra broody and keeps going UNDERNEATH Sally who miraculously isnt getting annoyed . My Georgie would never have put up with this cheek.
rule break number 3....move Sally and the eggs ....didnt work as first chance she got Sally was back in the original coop and Misty had found the eggs and taken over in the new coop
problem number 4... Sally isnt squatting firmly on the eggs but rather hovering over them as though shes afraid they will over heat whilst Misty is squatting fast on them ...Sally is an experienced broody as she used to be breeding stock in the farm i bought her from whilst Misty is a novice  ....so the heat is fluctuating too much for the eggs
rule break number 4 is about to begin ...im going to start candling from day 3 so if they are duds i can swop with 2 of the 4 i have left ...trouble is my candler is broken and the new one ive ordered is coming from China next month
guess i need lots of luck [-O<
xx kath


  • undautriundautri Senior Member
    How come my plans always go sooooooooooooooooooo wrong ??????????????
     ive got a cockerel
     no , the eggs didnt hatch in 2 days - theyre still under Misty whos under Sally
    no i didnt buy a cockerel or get given one or find an abandoned one ............................one of my hens is on the change ...in every sense of the word - she was crowing well this morning
     weve all heard croaky noises the last few weeks but put it down to my old age hens but today there was perfect crowing on 3 occassions
     i dont know who the culprit is nor whether or not they will turn anymore masculine or just stop at crowing but it brought back lovely memories of my boys
    x kath
  • sandiesbrahmassandiesbrahmas Super Moderator
    Crikey, Kath......you're pining for cockerels?.....I'm sure I can send you a couple. Two of the chicks my daughter hatched are behaving like males (don't ask about the feathers....8 weeks old and very few  feathers due to a double dose of one of the late-feathering genes, but chest/bumping and strutting their stuff.

    Some more eggs in the 'bator, too....and I'm good at hatching cockerels.

    Strange how they can change in old age, isn't it? They generally really do have to be near the end of their lives, unless they have 'lashed' their ovaries.

    My huge Naked Neck, Blackchops, passed her ovaries last summer and hasn't laid since (of course). She was a hen who regularly laid huge double-yolked eggs etc. so probably had an inherent problem anyway. A few days back she started to make a strange croaky noise and I thought she was trying to crow. However 2 nights ago I heard a croaky noise coming from the coop, sure enough, Blackchops.She was a very unhealthy shade of purple, too, with breathing difficulties.Having checked there was nothing obvious stuck in her throat, I called OH to 'do the needful'. I autopsied her and found she had a large cyst on her thyroid (filled with a clear fluid....not a cancer) which was squashing her trachea. She presumably had had a recent fluid build up in the cyst to cause the sudden deterioration. Other interesting things......weight 9lb 4 oz ( ! ), lots of abdominal fat, no egg-making equipment to be found at all. 

    Being a practical soul, and as Blackchops (apart from being enormous and fat) was otherwise healthy, I plucked her few feathers and cooked her for the dog. Even after several hours of gentle cooking, the meat was as hard as shoe leather and was SOOOO difficult to cut from her huge old bones (aged 8). The dog is thoroughly enjoying the meat....he never bothers to chew anything in any case.

    So, hens brooding hens and eggs in the 'bator which may or may not be fertile...exciting stuff. My candler IS working, and I have (day 11) got some embryos. but I'm not going to 'count my chickens before they hatch'. Still, I am down to a record low of 4 hens and one cock (Gordon, of course),with probably 2 pullets and 2 cockerels ...so hatching more is pretty obligatory,

    How many do you have now, Kath?


  • undautriundautri Senior Member
    wow Blackchops was some size !!!!!!!!!!!! so sorry to hear you lost her
     ive got 4 chickens and 5 bantams at the moment so only just room for 1 or 2 at most
     im not holding out much hope for my 2 eggs but it doesnt matter now anyway as ive got a cockerel - well half of one anyway :)
    not seeing much with a torch at the moment but its early days still, ill know better next week .
    glad to hear everything is going well with your hatching
     pics please :)
    xx kath

  • sandiesbrahmassandiesbrahmas Super Moderator
    How's the hatch going?

    I have two chicks out and some more 'pips'.

    My daughter's 4 are growing like weeds and still look like 2 pullets and 2 cockerels.

  • undautriundautri Senior Member
    Hi Sandie
     well done on your hatching success
    im about to chuck my 2 eggs ....my candler reealed one clear on day 14 and one just a black blob with no veins
    i havent given up yet ...... i decided against trying another 2 from the 4 left over which was just as well as i opened them to find 2 infertile and 2 with broken yolks
     ive bought different ones off a breeders site and am hoping Sally will hold on ...shes been broody 4 weeks already so im taking a chance 
     the little silkie snapped out of it last week but i think itll be really easy to get one of the silkies into broody mode if needs be
     pics please ;):):)
  • undautriundautri Senior Member
    well my candler arrived and things arent looking too good
     one egg seems to be a yolker - nothing to see. the other had a black spot but it doesnt seem to have grown and no signs of a blood ring but no veins either so im thinking the yolk is rotting
    all 6 eggs looked very porous (i only gave her 2 but hung onto the other 4)and ive just opened one of the 4 and not fertile so i think ill give up and get fresh eggs
    meanwhile one of my girls is still crowing but no signs of any of them looking different.
  • undautriundautri Senior Member
    edited July 2017
    New eggs arrived yesterday morning so i let them settle overnight and gave them to Sally this afternoon ...she immediately took to them and when i checked on her later shed been busy plucking out feathers to line the nest so touch wood is still very broody
     the old rggs have been binned - i just had to open them - one just hadnt moved and the other as i expected was starting to rot ...so much for eggs off e bay :( although i expect the posting had a lot to do with this bad luck.
     the new eggs are different breeds - i bought 3 crele araucana bantams and 3 silkies ....to shut rachel up , well i did promise :)
    x kath
  • sandiesbrahmassandiesbrahmas Super Moderator
    Good luck with them, Kath.

    Eggs through the post can be very dodgy, though I have had success with some.Here's hoping that the new eggs will be fertile and hatch.

    I had 7 hatch.....3 Brahma, 3  who are 3/4 Brahma and a little Naked Neck. They are doing pretty well.

    3 of the bigger 4 suddenly turned on the fourth (a cockerel I'd say).They would have killed him. I have taken him out and he is being integrated with the adults...apart from a cursory 'shoo' from Gordon all is well so far. The other 3 are also integrating with the adults....they are spending most of their time in the sheep shed and the area just in front of it. Gordon struts around from the house to the sheep shed (about 200 or more yards) with his ladies in tow  and the 'shed 3' seem to be integrating OK as well.

    Meanwhile tiny chicks are in the house......that's another hurdle to jump in a few weeks.


  • undautriundautri Senior Member
    Gordon is such a good boy and great at keeping order
     my lot of squabblers could take lessons from him
    x kath

  • undautriundautri Senior Member
    update - i candled day 10 and Rachels silkie egg is looking good - full of veins - but my crele araucana nothing ...zilch ..go figure !!!!!!!!!!!!!
    x kath
  • sandiesbrahmassandiesbrahmas Super Moderator
    Good luck with the Silkie egg.....very pretty birds.

    I still have the same arrangement here. Solitary cockerel (Teddy) is with the adult birds....they largely ignore him, but he knows his place (keeping well away from Marv a very feisty Naked Neck hen).

    The other 3 hatched by my daughter (Jeremy, Sandy and Darth....named by the children at her school) are resident in the sheep shed (barn) overnight and free range by day Darth and Sandy look much like cockerels now, whilst Jeremy could be a Jemima.

    Of the 'house' chicks, now 2 weeks old, I'm currently guessing 4 pullets to 3 cockerels (based on feather in), but that is subject to change!

    They all seem pretty healthy and lively..


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