Whether you’re looking to start your own coop or exploring a science lesson with your kids, hatching eggs has never been easier or more fun! With a few tools and a little TLC, you can be the proud hatcher of adorable baby chicks!
Ready to get started? Here’s everything you need to know about hatching eggs.
Everything You Need for Hatching Eggs
Hatching chicken eggs begins, of course, with eggs. If you don’t have a rooster, you can find a breeder to supply the fertilized eggs. Find one close by, as eggs don’t travel well.
Next, you need an egg hatching incubator to keep your eggs warm. An incubator should have a turning rack. Also, you need to equip it with a thermometer and a humidity meter.
Finally, you need a candling device to check that your eggs are healthy and crack-free. A simple flashlight will work, but there are specialized devices.
Hatching eggs can be messy. If you want a cleaner or more hands-free experience, consider getting a cabinet incubator.
How to Hatch an Egg
Chicken eggs incubate for about 21 days. A good egg hatching temperature is around 100 degrees Fahrenheit, and they need high humidity as well. If your eggs begin at room temperature, warm them up slowly.
Experts recommend turning the eggs at least two or three times a day, but four or five can be better. Some incubators and tools can do this automatically, but you can do it by hand as well. Keep track of turnings by drawing a symbol like an X on one side of the egg.
Check for signs of life or damage by candling. In a dark area, illuminate the egg with a flashlight or candler – but don’t take them out of the incubator too often. Checking them every five days is enough.
After 18 days, it’s time to stop turning the eggs and raise the humidity. Watch them carefully for the next three days – they should start pipping soon. Be patient; hatching can take up to 24 hours.
Caring for the Chicks
Once a chick has started hatching, it’s best to leave them alone. Learn when to intervene here. After about twelve hours, they should be dry, fluffy, and ready to move to their next home.
Baby chicks require lots of heat! Keep the temperature at around 92 for a few days, but you can start lowering the temperature week by week.
They also need clean bedding and access to food and water around the clock. Monitor them constantly to make sure their environment is safe and healthy.
After about five weeks, they’ll be ready to move outside.
Become an Egg Hatcher Today
Hatching eggs is fun and simple enough that even a dummy can do it. If you want to join in, get started today! Collect your supplies, find your eggs, and watch them grow into adorable baby chicks that you can raise or sell!
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