So I am going to stick my nose in here because I can tell you that humidity is very important the ENTIRE incubation.
Originally Posted by suburbanfarmer
Hi I am completely new to incubating.
This is my first time and I have researched on the humidity needed and at what time it needs to change to what humidity, but I seem to be finding very different answers. When I set the eggs 24 hours ago, I did so thinking they needed to be at 50-60percent humidity. then I read the hatching 101 on this site and it says 30-40 percent! I am worried. I tried to reduce the humidity by opening it up and I was going to take some liquid out of the liquid channels, but when I opened her up, I found the channels empty. The water I added 24 hours ago had already evaporated. My humidity is at 57 percent currently and has been as high as 65 percent and I am not sure how to lower it of if I need to. I am using the Little Giant 9200 Still air Styrofoam incubator. I have 39 eggs loaded.
Another thing I learned today that has me worried is that you are supposed to turn your eggs while you are storing them before you even set them in the incubator. I collected from my chickens over days before I loaded the incubator, but I did not turn them, because I didn't know you had to. Am I wasting my time trying to hatch these eggs? Any help is sooo welcome. Thank you!
Don't worry about turning during storing. Some people do and some don't and both sides claim they have wonderful hatches. As for humidity, if you are running dry and your humidity is reading 57% and you are not in a tropical or very humid region, then I woud say check your hygrometer cause it sounds like it is off. I use the LG9200. Using LGs are and can be very frustrating and they are a lot more work than many other bators. I get 90%-100% hatch rates with mine, but I am very hands on with monitoring.
I highly recommend that you monitor the air cells to make sure that the growth is adequate. I have helped many new hatchers that have had their humidity over 45% for the first 17 days and awful hatch rates because they were literally drowning the chicks at hatch time because the egg did not loose enough moisture, and while there are people that can incubate with greater humidity levels, it seems the majority (unless you are in a high elevation or have eggs that are extremely porous), fares much better with a lower humidity for the first 17 days, especially in the styro bators. At lockdown if you are hands off you can get by normally with 65%. If you are NOT hands off (like me) 75% is going to be better. I'm going to give you a link you might be interested in. I use this method and know many others that do as well and regularly have high hatch rates: http://letsraisechickens.weebly.com/blog/throw-away-those-incubator-manuals-understanding-and-controlling-humidity
Originally Posted by kyzerc
I am probally wrong,but I never turn mine while storing.I have 2 little giants also,and have had a time with humidinty I was filling all channels till I read directions the 15 th time.I bought a digidal humidinty gage,and it is about 10% difference.MY little giant gage will say 39% and the windows will be fogged over.I just switched to a genesis 1588.What a dream.The little giants have done me a good job though.I added a fan to one,and haven't been to happy with it.I can put 5 theromenters in one in all 4 corners and one in middle.The one by heater is always 4 or more degrees higher
I usually use 3 thermometers in mine. Under my heating element it is 2-3 degrees hotter than the outside, corners and center of my bator, and I have the fan installed. I will never use less than 2 thermometers for a hatch no matter what bator I am using. I am looking to switch to the hovabator as well. Rarely does anyone complain about them.
Originally Posted by suburbanfarmer
Thank you so much! I guess I will leave it alone and hope for the best. Kyzerc, I am glad to hear you don't turn yours. That gives me hope. My kids are really excited about this and I would hate to see none turn out. I will candle at 7 days and see what is going on. Right now my humidity is at 51 percent with no water in there so I don't think I could lower it if I tried. Also, I have the red ventilation plugs in, should I have them out?
I keep my plugs out for the entire time, many people don't. Some leave them in for the first 10 days. Some people just leave one in. Whatever you decide, make sure they are out for the hatch. Those babies need the air.
If you find that your humidity readings are right and your humidity is that high and your air cells are not growing you can try to add a container of rice in the bator to absorb some of the extra moisture or un popped pop corn. I have heard people say they work and people say they didn't, but it would be worth a try.