Saturday, January 29, 2011

Incubation Summary

Apparently there was some surprise at my 100%* hatch rate. All 14 fertile eggs hatched into 14 beautiful chicks with no problems.

*I didn't count the three duds that I threw out in the beginning.

I'm sure it was just beginners luck but here's what I did.

  • only used clean eggs (so no dirty ones that required cleaning)
  • used a hygrometer from CT to monitor the humidity in the Hova-Bator
  • added foil covered plastic bowls of water to keep the humidity up
  • during lock down the humidity was kept at 75% minimum but was usually 85%
As expected, there were the occasional large fluctuation in temp and humidity.  One morning we woke up to find it was 105 in the incubator.  Right at the beginning of pipping the temp dropped to 60%.  When the temp dropped I dripped in more water through the holes in the top.

I also did a big no-no.  I opened the incubator after pipping.  I had peeled back the foil on one of the bowls to up the humidity.  I didn't think the chicks would be able to climb up the bowls.  I was wrong.  One of the chicks got the onto bowl and fell through the hole in the foil.  I popped the lid on the incubator long enough to move the other chicks off the bowl, remove the wet chick and recover the bowl.  The humidity was around 90% when I started and dropped to 85% by the time the lid was put back on. No shrink wrapping occurred. 

Yesterday I put in some newly purchased easter egger eggs as well as some older australorp egg I had in the fridge.. I also broke my own rule.  The eggs were very dirty and required cleaning.   I should be able to see how many are still viable in about a week.

They're green!

5 comments:

  1. 100% is a pretty impressive hatch rate. It is usually around 80%. Good job!

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  2. Thanks! Hopefully the next batch does as well.

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  3. My first hatch I got 18/24,3 were duds and 3 had chicks that didn't hatch.So you did very well Limette!
    I don't know about the three eggs from the fridge.....how long were they in there?
    I read soooo must with my first hatch it made my head hurt! LOL I had to open my incubator to add water and I did open it on lock down because once you have a half a dozen chicks out they were rolling the other eggs all over the place,so once they were dry they went right in to the brooder.I also had to help two out of their shells......the earth did cave in when I did that! LOL
    So,waiting again! LOL I love it!

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  4. Have you done any candling with this lot?

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