Saturday, May 14, 2016

Hatching Update

We are hatching up a storm this year. My incubator is filled with turkey eggs. There are 244 eggs in there right now, with another 41 in the hatching tray. My inside brooders are filled to the brim, my outside brooder has a few birds in it, and we have already taken some to their forever outside home with the big birds.

My hatching rates are way up this year, as are my fertility rates. I'm not sure what made the big change but I was even super successful at hatching ducklings. I ever have been in the past!

Here's some stats...

My chicken fertility rate was 85%, and hatch rate was 90%.  That fertility rate was lowered, as I discovered my Speckled Sussex rooster would not fertilize his Speckled Sussex ladies, but instead, took a liking to a couple of Rhode Island Reds. I have a few mixed breed chickens out there now.

My ducks this year had a fertility rate of 85%, and hatch rate of 72%. Keep in mind, in past years, these numbers were in the 20s and 30s. AMAZING. And my drake, what a trooper!

For the turkeys, so far, I have a fertility rate of 91% and a hatch rate of 86%. Best year ever. I also have the most hens to lay this year, so I have more eggs than I can get into my incubator, there's a several day wait period before they can even get in. 

Now let's look at the numbers.  I sold about 300 chicks last year, so I thought I would try that again. I hatched about 100 chicks this spring. I didn't sell very many, so I've got a solid start on my replacement flock, as well as some meat roosters for the fall.

For ducklings, I hatched 87 ducklings! Wow, I did sell a few. And Aside from Paddles, most of the drakes will be sold as meat in the fall.

Now, onto the turkeys. that incubator is going to run until they stop laying mid-summer. So far we have hatched 210 turkey poults. HOLY MOLY.  I may start selling them soon, and we have lost a few along the way. Turkey poults are way more fragile than ducklings and chicks.