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I'd love to try hatching eggs. I've done some research but wondering if you guys can simplify it for me. I'd like to just hatch a small amount just to see what all happens first hand. I don't wanna do the whole food coloring in the vent thing right now. I'm just gonna take the eggs that I know for sure come from my silkies rather then my other birds. Any suggestions from experience would be greatly appreciated
 

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tjbrend said:
I'd love to try hatching eggs. I've done some research but wondering if you guys can simplify it for me. I'd like to just hatch a small amount just to see what all happens first hand. I don't wanna do the whole food coloring in the vent thing right now. I'm just gonna take the eggs that I know for sure come from my silkies rather then my other birds. Any suggestions from experience would be greatly appreciated
Just make sure you stabilize the temps for a few days before placing the eggs in. Have a t least two different thermometers in there. Know your humidity and temp requirements based on if you are using Still Air, or Circulated (fan) air in the incubator. Only open when absolutely necessary. And, if you are building your own bator, have spare parts on hand, build in redundancy for fan and heat source. Don't bump the incubator. Other than that, have fun, count your days, know hen you Gino into LockDown, and know what to expect on hatch rates, such as 40-50% on shipped eggs.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you. I was thinking of picking up an incubator today n setting up so I could put eggs in there in a few days. I had thought about making my own but decided I wanted to try hatching first with a small one and once I know more about it then maybe try to build a bigger one.
 

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tjbrend said:
One last question. I live in North Dakota. Brrr. When should I stop hatching.
Not sure how to answer that, I guess it depends, if your incubator is kept in a warm draft free area, and you are ready to keep those brooders nice and warm, as long as they are fertile. For me I. South Texas, we are able to hatch year round.
 

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Jim said:
Not sure how to answer that, I guess it depends, if your incubator is kept in a warm draft free area, and you are ready to keep those brooders nice and warm, as long as they are fertile. For me I. South Texas, we are able to hatch year round.
Well, not far south, but Galveston, tx.
 

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The first time hatching, I had a hard time keeping my hands out of the incubator. I was constantly opening it and candling them. Also we had a hard time keeping the humidity and temp at a good level. Due to all this we had a really low hatch rate. The next time we put eggs in the bator, we didn't wash the eggs and we let the bator warm up for 2 days before we put the eggs in. We candled the eggs only 2 times on day 7 and right before lock down. Day 15 I think. The hatch rate was almost 100%. It is really tempting to be in the incubator but Jim is right it is bad to keep opening it up. By the way, it never gets old to see chicks hatch!
 

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kaufranc said:
The first time hatching, I had a hard time keeping my hands out of the incubator. I was constantly opening it and candling them. Also we had a hard time keeping the humidity and temp at a good level. Due to all this we had a really low hatch rate. The next time we put eggs in the bator, we didn't wash the eggs and we let the bator warm up for 2 days before we put the eggs in. We candled the eggs only 2 times on day 7 and right before lock down. Day 15 I think. The hatch rate was almost 100%. It is really tempting to be in the incubator but Jim is right it is bad to keep opening it up. By the way, it never gets old to see chicks hatch!
So true. It is the reason we decided to be a breeder, I just love hatching, an chicks, I just can't keep Em all!
 

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Lockdown is the last few days. You take the eggs out of the turner (or stop manual turning) and raise the humidity. At this point, you don't want top open and you are basiclly on lockdown. If you have a broody hen ever hatch eggs, she does the same, the last few days, she won't even leave the nest to eat.
 

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Thanks, Jim! I'm hoping in the future I have broody hens & don't need to use the bator, but it was free & my 12 year old REALLY wanted to give it a try! So, we're trying! Fingers crossed!

Tj, did you hatch anything yet? I just set our first batch in the incubator on Thursday! We're pretty excited!
 

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RickaRae said:
Thanks, Jim! I'm hoping in the future I have broody hens & don't need to use the bator, but it was free & my 12 year old REALLY wanted to give it a try! So, we're trying! Fingers crossed!

Tj, did you hatch anything yet? I just set our first batch in the incubator on Thursday! We're pretty excited!
Good luck. If it is a styo one, I hear mixes
D results. I built my own and it has not let me down yet!
 

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Yes, I'm having a difficult time keeping the temp steady. But, I live in an old cinder block house & the temp in my house fluctuates a lot, too. We'll see, I'm just keeping my fingers crossed! I may see of my hubby can build me one. ;-) Do you think it's cheaper to build your own? Or better function? I'm new at this, so I'm trying to figure out the advantage to building your own v. buying a better quality incubator. Thank you!
 

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Yes, I'm having a difficult time keeping the temp steady. But, I live in an old cinder block house & the temp in my house fluctuates a lot, too. We'll see, I'm just keeping my fingers crossed! I may see of my hubby can build me one. ;-) Do you think it's cheaper to build your own? Or better function? I'm new at this, so I'm trying to figure out the advantage to building your own v. buying a better quality incubator. Thank you!
If you have the money then a quality professional incubator is the way to go. I built my own and it works for me. The better your incubator is, the better your hatch rates will be.

To help keep the temps more stable, try putting a jar of water with a lid on it in there to hold the heat. I have heard of people putting in stones or ceramic tiles to help also. Anything dense that will hold the heat will help.
 
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