getting the best eggs for hatching

Posted by: Frank

getting the best eggs for hatching - 02/04/14 10:36 AM

Now that its time to start with the breeding pens, and it is still winter(short days). Is there benefit to turning down time on light so that laying stops, and hens get a rest? I dont plan on starting the incubator until end of March or maybe later.
Last years slow spring cost more than need to be. So I was told for My Hobby.
Thanks Frank
Posted by: Altair

Re: getting the best eggs for hatching - 02/07/14 10:29 AM

I don't use any artificial lighting, it is good imho to allow their bodies to regain some condition, especially for breeding animals.
Posted by: CJR

Re: getting the best eggs for hatching - 02/07/14 11:47 AM

I used to hatch year around, when I could ship young birds. Can no longer ship, and so do not use lights. For a long productive life of best hens, that resting from producing eggs, is important for their health. Two 10 year old bantam hens, sisters, produced a few eggs last summer, hatched some lovely chicks, and doubt they will lay this year, but at least they are in good shape now! A 20W bulb, properly located will do the job of a lighted coop--not costly, but now, for me, no eggs is better.
Posted by: Uno

Re: getting the best eggs for hatching - 02/12/14 12:53 PM

I also do not provide winter light. However, I do run a 250 watt bulb, a red one, for heat. I hang it low so it does not light the place up. I have to heat the hen house otherwise the eggs are frozen solid by the time I gather them.

Despite some unusually cold temps and no extra light aside from a glowing red heat bulb, I have almost 100% fertility in the 15 eggs I put in the bator. I just hope it warms up by the time these eggs hatch or I'm in trouble!