Monday, 7 March 2011
The weekend saw the 10 day mark for the Exchequer Leghorn eggs under the Indian Game broody. As an untried broody she is behaving remarkably well but so far she has had little to no disturbance. I wasn't sure how she would react to me removing the eggs from under her, albeit very gently and for a minimum of time to enable me to candle them, but she took it in her stride with just a token peck of my hand in protest and then snuggled the eggs back under once they were returned.
All 10 eggs are fertile - 100% - I couldn't ask for more. 100% hatch rate is another matter, there is a while to go yet.
As the eggs are white every detail inside the egg can be seen when they are candled, so unlike the Welsummers, their dark shells making it almost impossible to see anything more than shadow and light.
This morning I also candled the eggs in the incubator. Once again all the Exchequer Leghorn eggs are fertile. It is hard to tell with the Welsummer eggs, a few look as if they may have died in the first few days. I have marked them, returned them to the incubator and will candle again on Day 18.
I had the same problem with the Barnevelder eggs, as they are also dark. These eggs came through the post and despite being very well packed several have ruputured air sacs. Normally I candle posted eggs before incubating but failed to do so this time. I have returned the eggs with the 'dodgey' air sacs back into the incubator, sometimes if they aren't too bad they have a chance of hatching, we'll see. One of the eggs was clear and has been discarded, a few more I am unsure about and will again candle them on day 18.
All of the Indian Game eggs were clear. I know the cockerel is fertile and think the problem arises from having him free ranging with a number of birds. In the next few days I will reorganise the runs and place him into a smaller grass run with just 3 or 4 hens. An excuse to set more eggs in a couple of weeks time.