About to attempt first hatch, I have some questions. .


8 Years
Aug 26, 2011
Newark, DE
How long are fertile eggs good for before they must go in the incubator? whats the proper amount of time to let shipped eggs settle before putting in the incubator? is the temp in the incubator supposed to be diff if you use still air compared to circulating air? my still air has been plugged in and set up for 4 days now and ats at a solid 99.5-100 constant with the thermometer setting right where the eggs will sit. Is this what I want? I have a digital temp/humidity meter that I hope arrives today too. what should i go for in humidity?


9 Years
Jun 15, 2010
Halifax, Nova Scotia
Fertility starts decreasing rapidly from around 7 days sooner if they are not stored correctly. Leave them to settle big end up for 24 hours at room temp. Still air temp should be 102 forced air 99.5. Your thermometer is placed perfectly. I aim for 30% humidity for the first 18 days


Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast
Premium Feather Member
13 Years
May 14, 2008
North Phoenix
My Coop
My Coop
1. 10 DAYS.
2. some folks say let them set for 12-24 hours. I put mine in right away
3. Still air, 100, circulated 99.5
4. That's what you want.
5. Humidity for first 18 days, 30-35%, last 3 days 65-70%

Good luck.

I'm putting eggs in tomorrow as soon as they arrive.


8 Years
Aug 26, 2011
Newark, DE
Thanks alot. I let the eggs sit pointy end down for approx 8 hours to get to room temp after receiving them in the mail. Then into the incubator, still pointy side down till this afternoon(to finish settling), then I will put them on their sides and begin the process of turning them roughly every 8 hours(3 times a day). The "hygrometer" i was supposed to have received came, and was only a thermometer ?? time to send it back, but in the mean time I have placed water in the center ring on the bottom of the incubator only, leaving the 2 outer water rings empty. I am hoping this is enough to get me to the 30-40% humidity range. Any other suggestions? I believe these eggs are 5-6 days old


Crossing the Road
12 Years
Feb 2, 2009
Southeast Louisiana
What you are doing sounds good. If you want, you can read this article. It's got pretty good information about storing eggs for hatching, plus good general incubating information.

Texas A&M Incubation site

In a forced air, you should have the temperature the same thropugh out the incubator. What you want is 99.5* F. In a still air, hot air rises. It is surprising how much difference you can get in one of those based on elevation. You are looking for 101.5* F at the top of the eggs.

As far as humidity, I don't use my hygrometer to tell me exact humidity. I use it to tell me when the water reservoir is dry and I need to add more water. I'd suggest for your first hatch you read the instructions that hopefully came with your specific model of incubator and follow that. Try to be fairly consistent in what you do and make changes to future incubations depending on your results.

My instructions said to fill a specific reservoir during incubation and fill others during lockdown. When I do that, I get between 40% and 50% humidity during incubation and 65% and 75% during lockdown, depending on time of year and the conditions in the room the incubator is in. Once the hatch starts the humidity goes up a lot further. Those work for me, but you may get different results.


The Silkie Villa
8 Years
Sep 28, 2011
Byhalia, MS

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