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Brand New Incubator

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by champers44, Feb 15, 2016.

  1. champers44

    champers44 Out Of The Brooder

    Feb 15, 2016
    So I just bought the 4250 model Farm Innovator Incubator with the automatic egg turner at Tractor Supply because I am wanting to hatch eggs for an agricultural project. I have had chickens all my life, I have just never hatched my own. I ordered some hatching eggs offline and I am also going to use some from my own coop. What I wanted to know was:

    ~What temperature is ideal for incubation?
    ~What humidity(s) are ideal?
    ~How long can eggs sit before they are considered infertile?
    ~Should eggs be cleaned before incubation?
    ~Does the incubator need to be cleaned if it is brand new?
    ~Do eggs need to sit before incubation? (I have heard that ordered eggs need to 'settle' before you place them in the incubator..)

    I have tried to research all this information, but every website seems to say something different.
  2. Yorkshire Coop

    Yorkshire Coop Moderator Staff Member

    Aug 16, 2014
    Yorkshire UK
    My Coop
    Congrats on your new incubator :clap

    Shipped eggs do need time to settle prior to incubation. They may also have detached misshapen air cells. Have a read of this article ~https://www.backyardchickens.com/a/hatching-eggs-101
    It has lots of great information on incubation that you will find most helpful.

    Good luck with your eggs :fl
  3. JetCat

    JetCat Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 26, 2015
    Southeast Alabama
    they all say something different because many of them base their information off what they've heard/read rather then what actually works. take all their comments that say ALWAYS or NEVER and toss all of that out the window as BS to start with and you're off to a much better start. although you stated you've already ordered some using your own is always a cheap way to learn for yourself what works, or doesn't, for you.

    ~What temperature is ideal for incubation? 100° F is ideal for most everything chicken related till you get into the very large breeds like emu/ostrich.

    ~What humidity(s) are ideal? here's where your own experience is going to come in to what's best for you both during incubation and hatching. some people dry incubate and some don't, some dry hatch while some will swear against it. me personally i dry incubate (that's about 30% in my area depending on time of year mostly) everything but quail eggs and i hatch everything at 65%

    ~How long can eggs sit before they are considered infertile? again personal experience is priceless. i've hatched eggs that were over 4 weeks old as well as eggs refrigerated at near freezing temps for same length of time with mid 90% hatch rate. if they were expensive eggs or from some of my demanding breeds i would NOT let them sit any longer then absolutely necessary but my own experience shows that it's not as critical as some make it out to be.

    ~Should eggs be cleaned before incubation? here's where you'll get a LOT of those ALWAYS and NEVER comments. i wash 90% of the eggs i set, i have excellent hatch rates, on some (quail especially) i don't wash and have excellent hatch rates so try either and see for yourself what works best for you in your particular situation.

    ~Does the incubator need to be cleaned if it is brand new? i know people who incubate and hatch in the same incubator and NEVER clean it period, their incubators are disgusting and they still have good hatches and healthy chicks, myself i don't hatch in my incubator and i keep my hatcher clean (warm soapy water) and then spray it out with hydrogen peroxide between hatches. if i have any down time on my incubators (not very often) i do wipe them down but most of the time i just keep adding eggs as trays are moved to the hatcher.

    ~Do eggs need to sit before incubation? (I have heard that ordered eggs need to 'settle' before you place them in the incubator..) personal experience here again, i do not rest eggs before incubating BUT, if for instance shipped eggs, if they have detached air cells i do set them in the hatching tray of my incubator so they aren't on the turning racks for the first 3 days.
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2016

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