So we purchased an incubator and automatic egg turner right after Christmas with the thought that we would hatch out our own eggs and not have to wait for the hens to go broody. That way we could try to control the meat production cycle. Rob put our first batch of saved eggs, collected the week before, 41 eggs in all, into the incubator on February 1. And yesterday I heard peeping coming from the incubator! No cracks in the eggs at that time, but when I got up this morning, there were 5-7 eggs with cracks in them and this afternoon the first one hatched, as you can see by the pictures below. It was very cool!
The little guy kinda got stuck like below for a few minutes. He couldn't seem to get the top of the egg shell off his head, but he finally did.
And when I got home this evening, there are now two hatched out. The first one is at the top of the picture below and is almost dry so I can take him out and put him the brooder Rob built.
They are gonna be a cross between a Delaware and Maran. Mostly black, the first chick has a little bit of white on him. I am excited to see if there are any other colors. Will keep you posted!