Raising chickens is an increasingly popular hobby as more people are looking for ways to get eggs and chicken meat that are healthy and hormone-free. When raising chickens from eggs, perhaps the most important factor to consider is choosing the best eggs for hatching. From choosing where to purchase the eggs to selecting the best eggs, there are many aspects to consider to ensure the best possible chickens are hatched.
Eggs found in a grocery store are generally not fertile. Therefore another source for eggs must be found. The best options are either a chicken hatchery or a poultry farm. All of the eggs to be hatched should be taken from the same source to prevent the spread of diseases among the eggs and baby chickens.
The breeding chickens the eggs come from should be well-developed, mature, and healthy. They should be proven compatible with their mates, have a high production rate of fertile eggs, and they should be disturbed as little as possible during the mating season. Breeders should also be fed a complete breeder diet.
If the egg source does not have the full amount of eggs desired, chicken eggs can be stored for about seven days before incubation. They should be stored in a cool humid location. The ideal conditions for egg storage are a temperature of 55 degrees Fahrenheit and 75% humidity.
If the eggs are being stored for more than three days they must be rotated once a day. To ensure the eggs are rotated properly, mark one side of each egg with an X and one side with an O. Turn them daily so all of the eggs have the X facing up one day and the O facing up the next day.