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Slap your eyes on these.
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Bodger



Joined: 23 May 2006
Posts: 13510

PostPosted: Sat Feb 23, 13 8:54 am    Post subject: Slap your eyes on these. Reply with quote
    

As you may know, Karen and I have been down in Herefordshire for the full week. As you will definately know, my OH has always been the brains of the outfit, so I booked her in for a cider making course, and while she's been on it, I've been doing a spot of sight seeing. I don't do courses.
On my travels, I managed to pick up a full tray of these (36), what do you think? Theyre darker than any of the eggs that my own Welsummers lay. They'll be going into the incubator on Tuesday,they'd go in earlier, but we have a scheduled powercut on Monday.





chez



Joined: 13 Aug 2006
Posts: 35931
Location: The Hive of the Uberbee, Quantock Hills, Somerset
PostPosted: Sat Feb 23, 13 8:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

Very pretty!

I am experimenting this year with setting eggs that are six to eight days old; apparently you get more hens than if you set really fresh ones. No results to report yet though!

jamanda
Downsizer Moderator


Joined: 22 Oct 2006
Posts: 35044
Location: Devon
PostPosted: Sat Feb 23, 13 9:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

Chez wrote:
Very pretty!

I am experimenting this year with setting eggs that are six to eight days old; apparently you get more hens than if you set really fresh ones. No results to report yet though!


How does that work then?

Bodger



Joined: 23 May 2006
Posts: 13510

PostPosted: Sat Feb 23, 13 9:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

It mimics nature.

Eggs remain dormant until the female starts to incubate ( sit on them) A lot of hens only lay every other day, so in a clutch of a dozen, some of the eggs can be three or four weeks old before incubation starts. Eggs can remain viable for an amazing length of time and good hatches be achieved.
Its amazing how many people think of fertile eggs as a ticking time bomb that start as soon as the eggs are laid and some of those people, are 'country' people too.

Last edited by Bodger on Sat Feb 23, 13 9:54 am; edited 1 time in total

Lorrainelovesplants



Joined: 13 Oct 2006
Posts: 6521
Location: Dordogne
PostPosted: Sat Feb 23, 13 9:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

As long as you turn the eggs twice daily and keep them in a low (but not freezing) temp you can keep them quite a few days.
Im happy to set eggs up to 6 days old, but the longer you leave it fertility decreases gradually.
I never set a fresh laid egg.

OtleyLad



Joined: 13 Jan 2007
Posts: 2737
Location: Otley, West Yorkshire
PostPosted: Sat Feb 23, 13 10:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

Love the dark brown colour. Do you think the hatched hens will also lay that dark or just some of them?
Or is it down to luck?

chez



Joined: 13 Aug 2006
Posts: 35931
Location: The Hive of the Uberbee, Quantock Hills, Somerset
PostPosted: Sat Feb 23, 13 10:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

Dunno, Jamanda; but I understand there was some research done in the fifties about it. I keep meaning to track it down; but in the meantime I'm giving it a go in a practical sense.

Mithril



Joined: 22 Jul 2011
Posts: 1755
Location: wessex
PostPosted: Sat Feb 23, 13 10:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

Very nice! Good luck with them.

Bodger



Joined: 23 May 2006
Posts: 13510

PostPosted: Sat Feb 23, 13 10:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

OtleyLad wrote:
Love the dark brown colour. Do you think the hatched hens will also lay that dark or just some of them?
Or is it down to luck?


They are pure Welsummer eggs, so they should lay a brown egg, but although they are known as dark egg layers, there will be a lot of variation. Hopefully, if I have some hatch, then a number of them will go on to lay similarly dark eggs.

SandraR



Joined: 22 Oct 2006
Posts: 2346
Location: Devon
PostPosted: Sat Feb 23, 13 10:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

I think they are as near perfect as you could wish for, dark and matt.

What is the average size of the eggs? Did you see the stock they came from? Were they good layers ?

Good luck ...keep us updated.

chez



Joined: 13 Aug 2006
Posts: 35931
Location: The Hive of the Uberbee, Quantock Hills, Somerset
PostPosted: Sat Feb 23, 13 11:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

I assume they are the same as Barnevelders in the egg colour thing? I have a number of hens who lay very dark eggs at the start of the season and then lay lighter ones as the season goes on. I am trying to breed from the ones that lay dark consistently. The payoff tends to be that they lay slightly fewer eggs.

One of the reasons I justify hatching late and early is that if you have older hens that have a long laying season, it's probable that their daughters will also have the trait and therefore you start to build up a flock of better layers.

SandraR



Joined: 22 Oct 2006
Posts: 2346
Location: Devon
PostPosted: Sat Feb 23, 13 11:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

I've just been reading the website of the breeder Bodger bought the eggs from. His stock come from respected Welsummer breeders and he says he is trying to breed from birds whose eggs maintain colour throughout the season...I know many of mine fade as the season goes on.

Late and early hatching for extended laying season of future birds makes sense.

I also work on the theory of hatching from the most prolic layers to hopefully provide followers who lay a good amount.

Bodger



Joined: 23 May 2006
Posts: 13510

PostPosted: Sat Feb 23, 13 11:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

They do lighten off as the individual hens laying season progresses. The egg size is really good and the birds that laid them were fantastic. The eggs are from a well known Welsummer breeder. I've just got to keep my fingers crossed now that I get some to hatch.

chez



Joined: 13 Aug 2006
Posts: 35931
Location: The Hive of the Uberbee, Quantock Hills, Somerset
PostPosted: Sat Feb 23, 13 12:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

Good luck. I am just about to fire up the brooder in the hope that the dozen I set to test-hatch are going to get out of the egg tomorrow ...

Bodger



Joined: 23 May 2006
Posts: 13510

PostPosted: Sat Feb 23, 13 1:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

I'm still useless at candling dark eggs. I had some a while ago and I couldn't see a dicky bird. Any suggestions?

Last edited by Bodger on Sat Feb 23, 13 2:32 pm; edited 1 time in total

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