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Published: 16/05/2017

How to store eggs before incubation

If stored correctly, chicken eggs can be stored for up to 14 days before incubation. This is important as it means that you don’t have to rush your eggs into the incubator, giving you time to build-up a clutch of eggs for maximum incubation success. Storing eggs first also allows you to fully prepare your incubator; so you can clean it thoroughly and check the temperature or humidity levels are just right.



“Don’t rush the eggs into the incubator - You can wait up to 14 days”

 


 

What happens in the wild?

In their natural habitat, ‘broody’ hens and other birds will produce one or two eggs a day, laying them in their chosen nesting place. The fertile eggs are stored in a clutch which the hen will return to often so she can gently arrange the eggs and nest. She ensures that the conditions are perfect before incubation begins.

After a few days she will have developed a large enough clutch to incubate. She will then sit on the eggs, staying in place for 21 days. During this time she will take only small and occasional toilet or food breaks.

 


 

Re-creating nature.

The best route to incubation success is to imitate nature as closely as possible. You can begin to imitate the wild conditions even before incubation has begun. To do this, follow these simple rules:

  1. Build up a clutch of eggs over 7-10 days.
  2. Turn the eggs regularly during storage to keep them fresh.
  3. Store eggs at just below room temperature (15-18C)
  4. DO NOT refrigerate or pre-incubate the eggs.
  5. Preheat the incubator first, then introduce your clutch of eggs.

Following the above method will ensure the best possible chances of success for your eggs.

 


 

Recommended products.

Turning the eggs several times a day during storage can be quite a difficult task. Particularly if you’re short on time. We recommend an automatic egg turner to keep the eggs and contents fresh. View the automatic egg turner here.

Before incubation, it’s important to keep the eggs clean and sanitised. Therefore incubation disinfectant is recommended for gently washing the eggs before they enter the incubator.

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