Some people drink. Some people smoke. Lots of people have addictions. I am addicted to chickens. I fully admit it, and I don't care who knows it. ;)
Sometimes, when it is cold and the days are short a few chicks to boost my mood til Spring is just what I need.
I really was going to let the hen set on the eggs, but I wanted her to be protected and in a little cubby nest I put in the pen. She wanted nothing to do with it, went and sat down as close to where those eggs had been, outside the box. :( Then she just came out of her broodiness in the snap of a finger by the next day. Sooo....
I did something I try not to do til Spring. I got down the incubator. I am not going into a full hatch or anything...but these eggs were already started! I had to hatch them, right?
Out of seven eggs I have four healthy embryos growing in here now. It makes me so happy when I candle (putting a flashlight to the egg to check progress, this done in the dark to get maximum viewing)them to see their little bodies swishing around in the fluids in the egg...living and growing.
Shelby is looking forward to having these four babies in the house over the winter too. She cant wait to be able to play with the new little ones. Besides, they are Serama, they wont take up much room over the winter. By the time they are big enough to go outside it will be SPRING! That is something to look forward to for sure.
Lets take a quick peek inside, just for a second.
You may be asking...why didnt she wash those eggs before putting them in the incubator. Well I will tell you why.
When an egg comes out of a hen it has a natural protective coating on the egg. It keeps bacteria from seeping into the porous egg shell. If you wash the egg, it can subject it to bacteria and if bacteria gets in the egg it will kill the embryo, so the egg is actually "cleaner" being left in its original state though it may not look so.
If the eggs are too dirty...I mean really nasty, I wont try to hatch those though.
The hen was setting for about three or four days on those eggs...I have had them in the incubator for at least a week, so we are at least half way there to hatch time. I am so egg-cited, its like a special treat to have these babies now.
Yes, I am addicted to chickens...but I am okay with it. :)