I, Farm Boy!

I, Farm Boy!

Lesson #1 on Chicken Breeding:
Hatch Clean, Well-Shaped Eggs

There is an eternal debate on which came first, the egg or the hen but in starting this weekly video lessons on backyard chicken raising, I decided to just start with the eggs.


The first thing that must be remembered is that hens which are not mated to roosters will lay eggs but these will never hatch.

Kailangan fertilized ang itlog and this will only happen kung may tandang na kasama ang mga inahin.

The most ideal eggs to be hatched are those which are laid by healthy hens.

In my farm, we practice parental immunization. Ibig sabihin, we immunize the parent stocks from common diseases like NCD and they are expected to transfer the immunity to their offsprings.

Eggs which are laid two days after a rooster mates with the hen are considered fertile while eggs produced five days after the cock is taken out of the breeding pen are not fertilized.

In selecting eggs for incubation, there are certain standards.

1. The eggs to be incubated must have a good shape. The perfect shape of an egg is “asymmetric tapered oval,” meaning the top end is bigger than lower end.

Hindi dapat isalang sa incubator ang deformed and elongated eggs.

2. The eggs to be incubated must not be small and not too big.

Kapag maliit, na ang tawag ay “peewee,” maaring mahulog sa butas ng egg tray, ganoon din ang sobrang malaki.

Eggs which fall from the tray and break inside the incubator could spoil the other eggs resulting in very low hatching rate.

3. Eggs with hairline cracks should not be incubated. These will not hatch and could invite bacteria spoiling the other eggs in the incubator.

4. Dapat hindi masyadong makapal ang egg shell kasi mahihirapan makalabas ang sisiw at hindi din dapat manipis kasi mababasag.

5. Eggs must be clean and you could assure this by collecting the eggs right after the hen has laid, especially if you practice flock mating. Put the egs in a tray with the small end at the bottom.

6. Contrary to common belief and practice, hindi dapat hinuhugasan ng tubig o pinupunasan ng basahang basa ang maruming itlog. This will affect the hatchability. Kung may nakadikit na dumi o putik, just remove it with a stick or knife. Hwag na isalang sa incubator ang itlog na masyadong marumi.

7. Use an egg tray in collecting the eggs. To avoid inbreeding, it is advised that eggs collected from one yard or one pen must be properly marked using a pencil to indicate the yard or the pen. In succeeding lessons, I will provide instructions on how to mark the chicks.

8. Eggs collected and placed in trays should be kept in an egg room with temperature lower than normal, preferably air- conditioned.

9. Eggs have pores and they could absorb water and foul odor, including bacteria. Do not store your eggs in areas where you also keep gasoline, vinegar or other kitchen stuff with pungent smell.

10. Finally, eggs must be loaded in the incubator not later than 7 days after collection. Some breeders say it is still okey at 10 days while others keep eggs in the chillers of refrigerators. I do not practice this so I cannot say whether this works or not.

This is our first lesson on Breeding and Raising Backyard Chicken .
Next week, we will discuss the final preparations before loading eggs in the incubator or allowing hens to sit on the eggs in the nests.


(This video was taken by MinDA consultant Rolly Ramos in one of my breeding pens using a Samsung Galaxy A50s phone camera.)



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