Another failed hatch - anyone have some good advice?

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by Shaun, Aug 13, 2010.

  1. Shaun

    Shaun Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 24, 2008
    SW Central Michigan
    Have four eggs that appear to have fully developed that should have hatched on Monday. Weight wise, they were spot on at two weeks. Had some egg rocking going on Monday, so was very hopeful. Had lowered temp to 98.5-99.0, and raised humidity as much as I could with lots of water and paper towels in the corners to wick up more water. Got up to about 60-65%. These were blue slate eggs out of my lavender hen, really wanted a lavender Tom. Would it have been better to put these eggs under my broody hen at 25 days?

    Have another batch in my new (to me) Brinsea - at one week they are all developing nicely. Can anyone give me some advice (other than raising the humidity higher, which I should be able to do in the Brinsea) on how to have better luck this time? My turkeys should be well fed - they have free range and good feed. Can't figure out why I have so many fail at hatching. The poults just don't make it out of the shells.

    Any of you out there that have successfully hatched turkey eggs in an incubator - please help!![​IMG]
     
  2. Steve_of_sandspoultry

    Steve_of_sandspoultry Overrun With Chickens

    I use a GQF Sportsman and don't change the temp settings at all. The temp runs about 99.8 to 100 so the eggs hatch about a day early. That has never been a problem. The RH% is about 40 to 50 until they stop turning then raised to about 60 or 65%.

    So Monday was day 28? Have you opened the eggs? If they fully develop and die right at the end that usually means your humidity was to high during incubation and they didn't draw down enough. The air cell was to small and the egg had to much fluid, when they pip the drown.

    Steve
     
  3. gobblecluck

    gobblecluck Out Of The Brooder

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    well the guy i got my turkeys from was using a sportsman cabinet bator and i built one just like it so i could have one so i could breed turkeys. this guy was hatching about 30 eggs a week all spring and summer. i went over there one day to get a look at his bator for some measurements and he had a batch of about 30 eggs that pipped and 2 that hatched (the rest died in the shell) and i asked him what happened, and he said an old timer told him to quit helping them get out because only the strong survive.( he would break the egg a little at a time with a small screwdriver to help them zip the egg if they were taking too long) if it meant my hatch going from 30 a week to two because " only the strong survive" i think i will help the weak ones too. i would get them out and let them dry off and walk around and give them a chance to live (every chicken i have helped out lived and was a perfectly normal chicken) than just say only the strong survive and let them die in their shells.
     
  4. Steve_of_sandspoultry

    Steve_of_sandspoultry Overrun With Chickens

    Our hatch rate runs 90% range and I don't help any out. I do support the "only the strong survive" method. After a few generations you will really see a difference in the overall health of your flock.

    Steve
     
  5. Tunastopper

    Tunastopper Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 9, 2010
    I know it sounds crasy but I don't raise the humidity at the end. I keep it the same and found that was what worked better for me. I have hatched about 400 turkeys this year that way. When the humidity was high I had chicks fully formed that never hatched. Some peeped but did not get out.
     
  6. Shaun

    Shaun Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 24, 2008
    SW Central Michigan
    Okay, I'm confused!

    At two weeks the eggs had lost 7% weight - just about half the 13% you need to lose, right? My humidity was in the 40's during incubation, and I was only able to get it up to 60-65%. Yet some of you say this should have been about right. I'd been told I needed higher humidity.

    In my current batch, I'm keeping the humidity at 45% in the Brinsea, and 99.5 degrees. Is this right? That's very close to what I was attaining in the other incubator. Should I be changing anything?

    As far as letting only the strong survive - that would mean SOME would survive - and I'm batting zero here.[​IMG]
     
  7. Denninmi

    Denninmi Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 26, 2009
    Shaun -- I think you posted a few weeks ago, and got a Brinsea Octagon 20 Advanced EX (with the humidity pump).

    Yes, the temp should be 99.6 (which is the factory preset), and the book says between 40 to 50 % RH, so I split the difference and set mine at 45 during incubation.

    I had the same problem you did -- a lot of them fully formed but dead in the shell. I was setting my humidity at 65 % to 70% at lockdown, once again pretty much based on what the manual said. But I am honestly beginning to think that is just too high. The next incubation I'm going to go like 58 to 60 % RH at lockdown and see if that makes any difference.

    None of my hatches were total busts like yours (sorry, by the way, I hope this goes better this time), but I had like 20 to 25% success rates overall.
     
  8. Shaun

    Shaun Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 24, 2008
    SW Central Michigan
    Yup, that was me with the Octagon. I set it for 99.5 and 45%, so am hopeful things will go better, but since I thought it finally had it almost right in the other incubator, I'm feeling pretty uncertain about the whole thing. When we couldn't get the humidity high enough before some of the eggs pipped but they didn't seem to be able to get out of the shell - like the membranes were too tough. So we've been trying to raise the humdiity.
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2010

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