Starting a new set this Saturday, 12/08/2012

Discussion in 'Incubation & Hatching' started by castillofa, Dec 7, 2012.

  1. castillofa

    castillofa New Member

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    Our first attempt at incubation, using eggs purchased from Efow.com and from an Ebay auction resulted in only two eggs hatching. One healthy chick and one that did not have well formed legs and had to be culled.

    I do not believe that the source of the eggs was the issue, but we will be trying to hatch some of the eggs from our flock.

    In a previous post, I mentioned that our dogs had been killing our birds. By the time I we rehomed them, we were down to less than ten birds, down from 35.

    That is why we ordered eggs to try to restart from hatching. I ordered some replacement pullets from Ideal just to make sure that we up and producing before summer.

    Wish us luck, we will post pics over the next three weeks. :)
     
  2. eqstrnathlete

    eqstrnathlete Member

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    I know how frustrating it can be with the dogs and birds. When my lab couldn't get to my hens anymore, he stated killing my barn cats. He killed 6 before I figured it it it was him leaving their bodies for me to find. Nevertheless, I rehomed him. I have been incubating eggs for a few years, and have brought my success rate for. 0% to 95%. So if you need any advice, let me know. Don't listen to the Internet when it comes to humidity. I keep y humidity at or just below 25%. When the eggs come off the turner, I add a wet wash cloth, bring the humidity up to 45%. If you get any wetter in there the chicks will get too big and drown before pipping through the shell.
     

  3. castillofa

    castillofa New Member

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    Thanks for the info. When I cracked a few of the eggs that didn't hatch, I noticed a lot of moisture, almost dripping out of the egg. I will keep the humidity lower this time round.

    :)
     
  4. eqstrnathlete

    eqstrnathlete Member

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    I am positive you will have a better hatch rate this time around. I learned the hard way with my first set of eggs. Now when they hatch at 45% they are perfect, not too wet, not too dry.
     

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  5. kaufranc

    kaufranc Junior Member

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    Eq, I love your picture with baby ducks and chickens ! Did you hatch them all together? Will you keep them together? Do they think they are the same bird? Curious if they are raised and kept together will they hang out together?
     
  6. castillofa

    castillofa New Member

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    Did a quick candling on day 3, just couldn't wait any longer. Two of the seven eggs were clear and were removed. The remaining five had blood vessel structures, so cross your fingers. I have maintained the humidity in the 35-45% range. After doing some research, I have found more information on "dry" incubating and hope that this will be the answer.

    I have also read a lot of opinion on the styrofoam vs non-styrofoam incubators. Like many people nowadays, funds are tight. As such, I was not able to afford a Brinsea product or a nice wooden incubator. Since both GQF and Little Giant are plentiful, I believe that they must be at least moderately successful in their purpose. How long did it take any of you to get the hang of incubation. I learn from my mistakes, but the lovely bride has reminded me that I am way over budget in trying to get our little chicken farm running. Hopefully, I can get the hang of this soon, so that I can get better hatch rates from our own eggs.
     
  7. eqstrnathlete

    eqstrnathlete Member

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    Yes I have hatched them together. Even my ducks that I didn't hatch hang out with my hens. They are even housed together.
     
  8. dfwquiltr37

    dfwquiltr37 Junior Member

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    Thanks for this tip

    Thanks for this tip. I have usually had good hatch rates in the past but lately not to good. I had been thinking my humidity was to low with the hatch I have going on now, it is at 20% I think I will bring it up another 5%. Love the idea of a hot washcloth, I use sponges but now that a friend gave me a GQF I put a plastic container in their for the water. So keep it at 20% till it is time to stop turning then you go up to 45%?
     
  9. castillofa

    castillofa New Member

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    Question for ya'll? When you've set your eggs for lock down, on day 18, have you seen any of them move? What I mean is that, if the chicks are ready to go, do the eggs move?
     
  10. eqstrnathlete

    eqstrnathlete Member

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    Yes. I keep it around 25%. Then once the eggs are removed from the turner (or you stop turning them), raise the humidity to 45%. I wouldn't go any higher. I have had near perfect hatches with these numbers.the reason for raising the humidity is so the chicks don't stick when trying to kick free from their shells.
     
  11. eqstrnathlete

    eqstrnathlete Member

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    I Wally don't see the eggs moving until they are really starting the hatch process. But once they pip into the air sack, you will hear the peeping! It is awesome.
     
  12. eqstrnathlete

    eqstrnathlete Member

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    Oh and when they start to hatch, do not keep a bowl of water in there. Put a wet washcloth in a bowl. Otherwise the chicks can drown.
     

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  13. castillofa

    castillofa New Member

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    Well, today was day 7 and I candled the remaining 5 eggs. They all looked healthy and vibrant. Good vessel structure and movement of the embryos. Humidity has been holding steady between 35 - 38% with an average temp right at 99.5. I am feeling good about this batch.
     
  14. eqstrnathlete

    eqstrnathlete Member

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    Well let me know how the hatch goes and attach pics. I have some set to hatch dec 25 and ducklings a week after.
     
  15. castillofa

    castillofa New Member

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    Did a final candling today. All the eggs had good air cell structure and movement. The kids are excited and can't wait till Saturday. I will post pics as soon as they peep. Thanks again everyone for the helpful info regarding lower humidity.
     
  16. Energyvet

    Energyvet New Member

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    Holding my breath in anticipation! Good luck on this great winter hatch!
     
  17. castillofa

    castillofa New Member

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  18. castillofa

    castillofa New Member

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    This morning was a great surprise. Let me recap - Got our first incubator GQF 1602N in November. Ordered eggs from Efowl.com and an Ebay.com auction. Total of 38 eggs. Set per incubator instructions. Only two eggs hatched. One was healthy, but one had be culled. The eggs that did not hatch, but looked good when candled, were full of water when I opened them. Chicks formed, but died.

    Researched dry hatching. Posted help from the forum. Received great advice. Set seven our own eggs, we had just started getting eggs during the first incubation run. After first candling, one was infertile and one died. Using the lower humidity process, the remaining five eggs hatched as follows - 1 on day 19, 2 on day 20, and 2 on day 21. They all look healthy and are moving around. They will be going into the brooder later today or tomorrow. This was an awesome experience and the kids were so much happier that we did not have the dead chicks.

    Happy New Year to all. :D