Candling during incubation

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Leaguinea, Aug 18, 2017.

  1. Leaguinea

    Leaguinea Songster

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    I am curious about candling eggs during incubation. How do you candle the eggs without allowing them to cool too much?
    Is it harmful to them to be picked out of the bator and candled and then air hole marked before replacing in the incubator? Does this temp fluctuation affect them? and also how often is it recommended that they be candled?
    I have been told to place eggs in the bator and don't touch until lock down, at this time remove from the turner, candle and lie flat in the bator, lockdown and don't open again until hatching is done.
    others have said to monitor and candle once per week, but I'm thinking this might affect the temp too much and cause stress on the eggs?
    Interested in hearing the opinions of others.
     
  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician

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    When I first started incubating :old, I was instructed to allow the eggs to cool for 15 minutes twice a day. Wasn't necessary, but think about it. Some hens will leave the nest once or twice a day for as much as an hour. Slight chilling of eggs causes no harm whatsoever. Many folks report incidents where the incubator was inadvertently unplugged for as much as 24 hours resulting in only a slightly delayed hatch. Candle , mark do as you choose - they are tougher than some give them credit for being.
     
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  3. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

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    Broody hens regularly leave the nest to get food, water, and take a poop. Brinsea, an incubator manufacturer, at one time marketed an incubator that cooled off a spell every day, mimicking the broody hen leaving the nest as if it were a good thing. In my opinion that was just a marketing ploy, but it would not hurt the eggs.

    The egg is pretty dense and it takes a while for the inside of the egg to cool off enough to do any damage. Sometimes the power goes off or a kid accidentally unplugs and incubator so it cools off for hours. People normally still get good hatches when that happens.

    As long as you don't get ridiculous about how long the eggs are out of the incubator, like don't go take a nap or go see a movie, the eggs will not be harmed by you candling them.

    The things I would worry about is that your hands need to be clean when you handle the eggs. Don't drop one and crack it. Things like that.

    You do not need to candle an egg to make it hatch. I never candle eggs under a broody hen. It's fun to candle and can be quite educational, but it's not necessary. I sometimes candle around day 7 just to satisfy my curiosity as to how many are developing, but I never toss an egg at that time. I always candle on day 18 when they go into lockdown in the incubator and remove the clears. I'm not worried about them exploding in the incubator, I just want to remove the ones I know will not hatch to reduce the congestion in the incubator when they start to hatch.
     
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  4. Egghead_Jr

    Egghead_Jr Crowing

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    The only worries of candling are one if you don't wash your hands can contribute to bacterial contamination and two if you drop an egg in the process. Other than that candle as much as you want.
     
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  5. abraga

    abraga Songster

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    Some people can't help themselves and candle every few days..especially 1st timers. I hand turn my eggs so the bator has temporary temp drop. I start to candle after about a week. I only check a few at a time and mark air cells so I can follow development in case i need to adjust humidity. If I come across infertile as I do random checks..i toss them. It does not hurt the eggs if they expirence momentary cooling to check fertility/air cells. Hens leave the eggs naturally to eat/drink. Some people advocate a cool off period for that reason. However...i think doin occasional handling dies the same thing. So...candle ur eggs...don't fret over a bit of a cool down..they will be fine and give u the opportunity to become more expirenced in incubation...plus...its so fascinating watching what happens as chicks grow!
     
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  6. abraga

    abraga Songster

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    I have one of those brinsea bators that have a cool down mode! Never used it.
     
  7. Leaguinea

    Leaguinea Songster

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    Thanks so much for the information, everyone!
    I was thinking along those same lines that the broody mama gets off to eat/drink/poop etc. But my last batch, I candled 3 - 4 times and only had 3 of the 13 hatch so I thought maybe I messed something up by opening the incubator. Temperature fluctuation and humidity dropping.
    I always wash my hands prior to and after handling eggs and chicks
     

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