Hatching And Incubation Of Eggs


Eggs are of 2 types:- First is egg for consumption and Second one is egg for producing chicks i.e fertile eggs. Fertile eggs are also called as hatching eggs.


Hatching can be defined as the process by which a germ cell in egg is developed into a chick within 21 days which later develops into a adult hen or rooster.


The development of embryo in mammals takes place in mother’s womb whereas the embryonic development of poultry bird takes place outside the mother’s womb i.e. in the fertile egg. The fertile egg provides food to developing embryo.


In this blog we are going to dicuss Hatching Of Poultry Eggs-Natural Vs Artificial Incubation in detail along with their advantages and disadvantages.

Methods Of Hatching Eggs Or Incubation


There are 2 methods of hatching in Poultry eggs. These methods are explained below:-


1.Natural Hatching Of Eggs

Natural hatching or hatching of egg by hen is primitive but most effective method to get high Percentage of success. This method is still popular with small Poultry keepers in remote rural areas of many parts of the world.


Management Practices In Natural Hatching

We should properly care and manage hatching eggs in order to get quality eggs and make profit. Some of the management works are discussed below:-


Selection of the hatching hen

The local hen is ideal for hatching chickens as she is a dose sitter and outing to her light weight there is little possibility of egg being broken.

The hen should be thoroughly broody and she may be tested with the help of dummy eggs for her Interest to site on the eggs.

The hen must be in petted health end have all the feather on her. Hens in moult should always be rejected.


The hen should be thoroughly dusted with a good insecticide, such as INIMMegeol or sodium fluoride. A further dusting ten days later will ensure Its complete freedom from lice and ticks.

✓Best time to set hen

The best time to set hen is at a night as at this time she more likely to settle down to her job. Besides, when eggs are put under the hens at night the chicken are more likely to appear on the night of 21st day and will have the whole night to rest and gain strength.

✓Number of eggs under a hen

Depending on the size of hen, 10 -15 eggs can be placed under one bird. The ordinary hen will only cover eight to nine eggs.


Care of sitting hen

The sitting birds should receive clear water, twice daily and adequate amount of whole grains and lime stone grits. Sloppy foods of all description should be avoided, as they tend to produce loose droppings and consequently soiling of eggs.

The hen should be taken out at least twice a day for about 30 minutes to feed and watered. The temporary changes from the cramped position is good for the hen and the exposure to the air gently benefits the eggs


Advantages Of Natural Hatching


✓Natural hatching is profitable for hatching small number of eggs.


✓There is no need of any implements for hatching of egg by this method.


✓The broody hen will take care newly hatched chicks if they are left to them.


Disadvantages Of Natural Hatching

✓The broody hen sometimes leaves the hatching eggs before the eggs are hatched. The total number of eggs spoiled in this case.


✓The breaking of eggs may occur due to faulty sitting of broody hen. This method is not suitable for hatching large number of eggs at a time.


✓The hen do not lay egg so long they are engaged in hatching of eggs. The total production of eggs may be hampered for this.



Artificial Hatching Of Eggs Or Incubation

The small poultry farmers generally use the broody hen for hatching the egg. The local hen are ideal for the purposes. The broody hen can hatch 10 to 12 eggs. But at present the incubator are used for large scale chick production.


There are 3 types of incubators which are used for artificial hatching of eggs. They are :-


1.Hot water tank incubator

The cabinet of the incubator is made of wood. The wall of the incubator is made with wood, tin or asbestos sheet in such way that there is some space in between them and this space is filled with glass wood or glass fibre.

The insulator preserve the heat inside the incubator have the following compartment:-


Hot water chamber: Hot water is kept in chamber of copper or aluminium, which is placed on upper side of the incubator. The heat radiated from water chamber falls on egg and the embryo develops slowly by getting heat.


✓Flue: Flue remains at the side of the incubator. A oil lamp is attached on the beneath of the flue. The hot air entered into incubator through the flue. This hot air maintains the temperature of water in the water chamber. The upper end of the flue is open and a damper remains on it.


✓Arrangement of automatic heat control: The incubator has the heat regulating arrangement. When the temperature of the incubator rises above the level to which it is previously adjusted, the capsul expands and forces the pus rod upwards and this in turn lifts the damper off the exhaust flue, but as soon as the inside temperature fails below the required point, the damper closes down and all heat goes into the incubator.


✓Arrangement of maintaining humidity: The optimum and uniform humidity is very essential for successful incubation. The relative humidity should be arou –percent during the 18 days of incubation and 70 percent in the last three ch optimum hatchability.


2.Hot air incubator

Hot air incubator is generally used more than that of hot water incubator. The structure and function of this incubator is similar to that of hot water incubator. The only difference is the presence of heat chamber in place of hot water chamber, which is present in hot water incubator. Heat is provided by lamp or electric heater.


3.Cabinet type incubator

Cabinet type incubator is generally used for hatching large number of egg at a time in Government and non-government poultry farm. The demand of this incubator is increasing gradually. The egg tray are fitted in stacks. As a result, the incubator becomes smaller in size. Electricity is used for providing heat.


Management of incubators during incubation



The main object of fumigation is to kill disease-producing organism to decrease the disease infection of the chicken and to control the spread of organism In the hatching house. Formaldehyde is generally used for this purpose. Fumigant is made by mining formaldehyde and potassium permanganate. These chemicals are required in the following rate for fumigation of incubator measuring one hundred cubic foot.

✓Formaldehyde: 45 gm. (liquid)

✓Potassium permanganate: 30 gm.


2.Leveling of the incubator

Leveling of the incubator is very essential. The damper rod will not function normally if the level of the incubator is not even. As a result the temperature regulation incubator is affected. Leveling may be accomplished by the use of a sprit level.


3.Regulating incubator

A trial run of the incubator at the beginning of each hatching, regardless of the incubator new of old is a must. The thermometer of the incubator should be checked. Comparing with a standard thermometer.


Advantages Of Artificial Incubation

✓Large number of eggs are hatched at a time.

✓Hatching of eggs may be done as and when required.

✓The disease of broody hen may transmit to chicks in the case of natural hatching. But there is no such possibility of transmission of disease in case of artificial hatching.

✓There is no need of broody hen.

✓The rate of hatchability of incubator is more.The artificial incubation is profitable from economic point of view.

✓The artificial incubation is most useful for the hatchery.


Disadvantages of artificial incubation

✓Incubator and brooder are needed for artificial incubation and thereby it needs extra cost.


✓Artificial incubation needs skilful management. Otherwise, the whole program will be upset.


✓The machinery defects at any time of incubation period leads to heavy loss.


✓The newly hatched chicks need special nourishment. The broody hen performs this function in case of natural hatching.


Final Verdict

This is whole information on Hatching Of Poultry Eggs-Natural Vs Artificial Incubation.


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