Malaysian Serama Bantams

Malaysian serama, Serama bantams, World's smallest Chicken

                           Incubation & Hatching

 

The serama is a relatiely good little layer considering its body shape and small size, my females at home lay usually every day or every other day  when in full lay.  

As the body size of the serama varies vastly from A to C class weights as does the egg size. Most larger A class birds lay small eggs which usually prove to be viable, B class birds can be productive breeders with C class birds usually laying the most eggs which in general are the largest and usually have higher hatch rates.Tiny A class birds often fail to lay or lay eggs too small to prove viable, however this is not always the case, as I personally have had excellent results from females weighing as little as 235gramms. The same can be said of males as particularly small males are often infertile. 


Picture1878.jpg picture by showgirl1

 

A normal bantam hen egg seen pictured next to a true bantam egg and the serama egg pictured far right with a UK one penny piece for size comparison.

 

 

Choosing eggs for hatching

  • It is always advisable to hatch serama eggs which weigh between 18g and 24g.
  • Never incubate deformed eggs
  • Incubate the cleanest eggs but do not wash them as this reduces viablility
  • Avoid setting eggs from birds who are undergoing treatment as fertility/viability will be low
  •  Check eggs for cracks or flaws etc
  • Eggs which appear mottled or opaque are often unviable
  • Soft eggs are not viable

 

Once you have chosen the best eggs for incubation it is time to either set under your broodie hen or in the incubator. In the case of the broodie hen please ensure that she is sitting solid and not merely having a sit down. A solid broodie hen can be aggressive, she will be defensive and will fluff up her feathers and usually drop her wings and raise her tail when you touch her. She will usually position herself in the nest box or in the corner of a pen. Make sure she is in a safe draught free position when setting the eggs. A hen will do all the leg work so once you have set the eggs just leave her alone to do her thing. Always ensure she has plenty of food and water and peace and quiet. You can candle the eggs to see if they are fertile after 10 days if the hen will allow you to. 

Artificial incubation is not so simple, but once you become accustomed to it, it becomes easier. 

I personally use an Rcom50 incubator to set in weekly cycles and an Rcom20 to hatch.

    Temperature - 37.5'C
    Humidity - 45% - 50%
    Stop turning day 18
    Increase humidity to 60% on day 18
    Reduce temperature to 36.5'C on day 18
    Increase humidity to 65% once 50% of eggs have pipped
    Hatching can take place between day 18-21
    Once chicks have hatched move to the brooder
 
 
 Serama chick hatching in Rcom20 incubator
Picture1453.jpg picture by showgirl1
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     Serama chick just hours old