anyone done a staggered hatch in the same bator?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Kelpie, Feb 8, 2009.

  1. Kelpie

    Kelpie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 20, 2008
    Charles Town, WV
    Hi folks! I have a forced air hovabator. I got 15 silkie eggs on the 6th that were shipped on the 3rd so they are probably 5 or 6 days old right now. I've got them in the turner in my basement at about 55 degrees.

    The challenge is that I ordered more eggs that have not arrived yet. Two more packages will probably arrive in a day or two. I tried to order them so they'd all arrive at the same time but then I saw the proto-onagadori eggs on here and I just HAD to have those too since I've coveted them for years. Those will arrive late in the week at the very earliest.

    Obviously I'm concerned about my 6 day old ones losing viability but I am also concerned about the effects of having eggs at different stages of development in the bator at the same time if I stagger the hatch and how it would work when I have to increase humidity and remove them from the turner.

    So I'm left with two questions for you folks more experienced than I:
    1) Has anyone done batches a few days apart in development in the same bator and how did you handle it the few days prior to the first batch hatch? Will the extra humidity at day 18 damage the later batch?

    2) Should I start incubating the ones I've got and am hopefully getting tomorrow or should I wait until I have all the eggs I'm going to get?

    Thanks for your guidance!
     
  2. sewincircle

    sewincircle Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 19, 2008
    Central New York
    I just did a staggered batch. It was not intentional. I ended up buying a second incubator as a hatcher. I used the still air I bought as the hatcher and the forced air as the incubator. When it was time to stop turning I put them over in the already warm hatcher with humidity up already. I was trying to avoid opening the incubator to turn other eggs when the others should be in with higher humidity. I hope this helps.
     
  3. Farmer Kitty

    Farmer Kitty Flock Mistress

    Sep 18, 2007
    Wisconsin
    The problem is the bacteria from the eggs that are hatching are harmful/deadly to the ones still incubating.

    I have done staggard hatches in my bator until it's day 18 and then I moved the day 18 eggs out into my electric skillet (see signature for directions) to hatch.
     
  4. thecochincoop

    thecochincoop Chillin' With My Peeps

    iIf you don't have a whole lot of eggs then you can take a few of the turner rails out and put up a little cardboard wall to keep the newborns out of the turner. I put the eggs that are getting ready to hatch in the open area and let the other ones turn. This is what I have done when I needed to set a few more, but I don't have a whole lot of eggs at once usually.
     
  5. moduckman

    moduckman Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 2, 2009
    Cairo, Missouri
    I just finsihed one. I would rather not but I used two incubators this time, (I have three others, but did not want to get them out). After the first hatch (13 chicks) from both incubators, I placed the next hatch into one of the incubators and the later hatch in the other. I did this because I really wasn't sure how it would go. I had a poor hatch this fall with one of the bators and was afraid bacteria was in it. I always bleach, but Iwanted two incubators to make sure. After the first eggs were in both, we had a couple of days with above freezing temps, so I put them in the bators.

    Staggered hatches do work, but again, I don't recommend it.
     
  6. jvls1942

    jvls1942 Overrun With Chickens

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    Oct 16, 2008
    wausau,wisconsin
    first off , If he had two bators he would not be asking this question.

    Now, you can do it.. Just treat your first eggs as priority one. go with the high humidity when it is due..
    then drop the humidity after the hatch and continue with the second batch as normal.. a couple of days of humidity should not hurt the second batch..

    I have already let the eggs keep on turning right up to hatching too.
    those hovabator turners are so slow the chick doesn't even know it is being turned.. I let my cabinet turner go also and that is a lot rougher than the hova.......
     
  7. LilBizzy

    LilBizzy Chicken Storyteller

    May 20, 2008
    Maryland
    I just did a staggered hatch in a still air hovabator . It was my very first time hatching.I hadn't planned on it,but our rooster died and I wanted his babies. But after putting in the first 4 eggs, I worried that if they didn't hatch, I wouldn't have the babies. So I put in 6 more for a backup after a week. 2 out of the original 4 hatched last week, and 3 out of 4 ( 2 were not good from the start) hatched Saturday. I wasn't sure how the raise in humidity would affect the 2nd hatch. Maybe I got lucky, but they were fine. I removed most of the trays from the turner at day 18, leaving 1 tray for the 2nd hatch. When the first ones hatched, they had problems getting over the "speed bumps" from the turner.
    You can see the speed bumps and part of an egg on the turner in this pic
    [​IMG]

    I think there are probably bad points to staggered hatch. But you don't want to lose the eggs you have waiting, either. Oh, the choices we have to make . Good luck with whatever way you go.
     
  8. Kelpie

    Kelpie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 20, 2008
    Charles Town, WV
    That skillet bator is fascinating! I have both a bread warmer thing that is similar and a crock pot. I'll have to finish reading your thread. i'm going to set them up and measure the temps. I do have another incubator but it's an old metal clunker and the temp has a deviation of 30 degrees vs 3 degrees for the hovabator. It goes up to 117 and down to 77.

    So you all seem to think I should stagger instead of wait?

    I am kicking myself because I was visiting a friend in NJ yesterday and he had two bators sitting around for snakes and I said "Oh I have the same model!" But I didn't ask..... and now I'm back in WV and he's on his way to Bali. [​IMG]

    Thanks.

    ETA: LilBizzy- i'm so glad your hatch worked! Sorry about your roo.
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2009
  9. jvls1942

    jvls1942 Overrun With Chickens

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    wausau,wisconsin
    Quote:I think one of the bad points might be that you had to open the bator to take the picture???
     
  10. LilBizzy

    LilBizzy Chicken Storyteller

    May 20, 2008
    Maryland
    Quote:Nope, I was very good and didn't open the bator. That picture is thru window. I was very surprised at how clear it came out
     

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