Difference between incubator and hatcher?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by qooqoomom, Mar 3, 2009.

  1. qooqoomom

    qooqoomom Out Of The Brooder

    Feb 4, 2009
    I thought I just put the eggs in the incubator until they hatch, but some people on here are talking about moving them from the incubator to a hatcher. What is a hatcher? Why use one?
  2. Mojo Chick'n

    Mojo Chick'n Empress of Chickenville

    Quote:a hatcher is just an incubator that is used just for hatching - some of us have no patience and set eggs at different times, and a hatcher that is seperate from the incubator is handy for this - that way when you have to stop turning, you put those into the "hatcher" and the eggs that still need to turn can be left in the other incubator.

    I have two incubators, and a third as a hatcher. The hatcher doesn't have the auto turner in it, but I do have fan in there.
    This way I can set eggs in the incubators, and put them into the hatcher as they need to hatch. As an example - right now in one incubator I have both chicken and duck eggs (hatch at different times) and in another incubator I have chicken eggs, duck eggs and quail eggs (all three hatch at different times, even if set on the same day).

    Most (read "normal") people won't need a seperate hatcher - they can just set eggs and hatch in the same incubator. However, if you are highly addicted to hatching and/or are incubating different species, then a seperate hatcher comes in very handy.

  3. BuckeyeDave

    BuckeyeDave Overrun with Buckeyes

    May 27, 2008
    Minster, Ohio
    My Coop
    Great analogy Meri I'd just like to add a couple quick points. The first 18 days the egg needs to be turned 3 times daily and the humidity level needs to evaporate 14-18% of the moisture content of the egg. The hatcher is for the last 3 days of the process, the eggs aren't turned because it could kill the chick and the humidity is much higher than the incubator so when the chick tries to leave the shell the shell and membrane dry out too quickly and attach to the chick making one difficult and sticky situation. This is why I have both for the above reasons. I also made a large box with waterer in the bottom of my hatcher for the chicks I don't ship (I call it the nursery) so they can recover from the hatch and take a week off before they are introduced to the general chick population.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by