Bucs-Bater After Hatch Report


9 Years
Dec 13, 2010
Seffner, Florida
“Bucs-Bator” First Hatch After Action Report.

I started this adventure well before taking any action by reading up on incubation here on BYC and the web. Once I set my mind to the task I was on the fast track – is there a fast track when incubating????

On Feb 05, 2011, I ordered 10 Black Australorp Eggs from a breeder selling on Ebay.

On Feb 06, 2011, I began working on my incubator (Bucs-Bator). It did not take long to learn I could not maintain the heat levels I wanted; so I turned to the folks here on BYC. BYCer “rickerra” (BTW: THANK YOU VERY MUCH!) suggested I add heat sinks and a thermostat which I did with great success.

On Feb 09, 2011, the eggs arrived. Ten were ordered, 12 arrived, two were cracked during shipping and the rest looked fine. I took advantage of one of the cracked eggs by opening it up and looking for the “bullseye” and it was present. I fired up the incubator; let it steady out. I let the rest for 24 hours.

On Feb 10, 2011, the eggs were set. My temp remained steady between 99.1 and 100.4F, the humidity averaged 44% and the eggs were manually being turned three times a day by tilting the incubator (simulating an automatic eggs turner). I purchased Distilled water for the water tray.

On Feb 18, 2011, I candled the eggs and determined that I had two with no signs of development. I very carefully cracked them open and the yolks looked like they had been scrambled. This left me eight eggs three of which looked really good and five which I marked with a question mark because I simply was not sure if they were viable.

On Feb 21, 2011, I candled again. This candling eliminated three of the questionable eggs. I had two with early signs of life but they were “quitters”. Based on the charts I have seen on the web; they quit on or about day three. The last of the three had a blood ring. This left me with three good and two eggs I was still unsure of.

On Feb 28, 2011, I candled the eggs for the last time. I still had what appeared to be three good and two which I could not determine.

On Mar 04, 2011, day 22, I had one which hatched. I float tested the remaining eggs late that evening and I had zero movement. I opened them all at that point. The questionable egg quit on day 14 or 15 based on the charts and the last three looked as if they made it to day 21 but they had a greenish-yellow mass/ribbon in the area of the yolk sack which others here on BCY identified as bacteria build up.

Today, Mar 05, 2011, I took apart the incubator to make some modifications and removed the water tray. Upon inspecting the water tray I found mildew. I don’t know for sure, but, if mold hurts people I have to believe that it can harm a growing fetus. I wonder if the problem is the Distilled water as there is no chlorination; thus, nothing to stop the mold from growing?

In conclusion: I look at this hatch as a moderate success. The original 12 eggs shipped obviously took a beating during shipment. I believe this eliminated seven of the 12. One made it to day 14 or 15 and died and four died from bacterial growth. All of which I don’t believe I had any control over. I would like to know about the mold issue and if you have any idea how to eliminate this mold problem I would greatly appreciate the advice.

But, once all is said and done I have this chick to show for my efforts and that’s pretty cool:



Today, once the incubator is sanitized, I intend to set 18 Blue Barred Rock eggs today; these eggs were not shipped. I got them from BYCer “Halo”.
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Being a Floridian at heart but no longer location - I was really excited about the Bucs-Bater!!

Did you make a page with instructions on what you did to make it? I am making my first bator this weekend and wanted to do it in a styrofoam or standard cooler as well. I am reading everyone's instructions on homemade bators here.

Congrats on your one cute chick. Good luck with the next set!
I did not keep or make instructions for the incubator - in fact today I basically rebuilt it, fixing things I did not like about the first build. What I did was search the many links here on home made bators and took what I liked and dismissed what I did not like. A couple tips which will help. You'll need some sort of heat sink; I used river rock and filled 16oz water bottles - it really goes a long way at keeping the styro-bator stable. Also, you will need a t-stat; I got one from Ebay and love it, my temp remained constant. Here is the one I got: http://cgi.ebay.com/Incubator-Thermostat-heating-hathching-eggs-chicken-/270608307660?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item3f018315cc

here will tell you to get a Wafer T-stat but this worked well for me. I have never used a Wafer T-Stat so I cannot base an opinion. Another must, in my eyes, is some sort of small hose leading to your water tray, so you don't have to open you bator to refill the water tray.

Good luck on your build. If you have any questions along the way I'll be happy to share what little knowledge I have learned.
Oh wow that does look like a good thermostat - I especially like that it comes with diagram instructions for wiring. That's the only thing I'm concerned about is wiring it all together. I have minimal electrical knowledge!! But there are some really, really good diagrams available.

It definitely seems like tubing is requirement to refill the water rather than opening the lid. I'm also on the fence about an automatic egg turner. It would be good to learn but since we are doing this as a classroom project, it might just make things simpler!

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