My success rate in the past has been satisfactory, but not fantastic. Usually, out of 40 eggs I get just under 50% hatch ratio. This has been sufficient & I believe the hatch would be more successful if my ratio of roosters to hens was better.....I usually have way to many hens for any single male to service. No wonder my roosters have been tired!
This year my rooster hen ratio is a bit better, 2 roosters & 6 hens. A few of these hens are older, so the ratio may be even better. We have original names for the roosters (from last years hatch), Blue & Red. "Blue" wears a green leg band & is the head rooster, while "Red" is simply because of his strong red coloring.
My incubator is made by Farm Innovators and is a small 41 egg capacity unit with a turner tray, temp control & humidity monitor. It usually holds the temperature well at 100 degrees & I try & keep the humidity around 60 degrees. My eggs are within the 10 day period for collection. I do candle the eggs as I go along to remove any that are not fertile, etc. I try to keep this as simple as possible to not add to my work load, though maybe trying hen hatching is an even better idea in the future.
We get new chicks of our own breeding choice, the roosters & at least 6 hens are pure Ohio Buckeyes....with some Buff/Austrolorp mixes thrown in. Our family has tried many breeds over the years and have been very happy with this duel purpose bird. It is very winter hardy, great layers, good temperament, good size for eating, & we've had our fair share of broody hens for future hatching. The roosters were both hatched by our sister farm from very good breeding stock, not bulk hatcheries.
After researching the conditions and practices of commercial hatcheries, our family decided that finding privately hatched stock was best & then to hatch our own from that. We can choose the best stock to breed & the size of the birds has increased with this. Commercial hatcheries are like factory farms and we choose to vote with our dollars who we support.
Thanks for visiting & I welcome all comments & questions.