Do hovabators ever go bad? UPDATE 11/24

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by CityGirlintheCountry, Oct 22, 2010.

  1. CityGirlintheCountry

    CityGirlintheCountry Green Eggs and Hamlet

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    Middle TN
    I have a Hovabator 1588 that I purchased back in the spring. It has run constantly since. The first several hatches were great and had no problems. The last three hatches I have done have failed miserably. The first two bad hatches had temps at 99 and humidity at 45-55% days 1-18. Temps for 18-21 stayed at 99. Humidity spiked to the high 90s when I added water and then regulated back into the low 80s/high 70s when I opened the top plug for a bit. I had no chicks the first round and three the second. The remaining chicks in both hatches looked to have died around day 18 when I added the water. They were formed, but had not finished absorbing the yolk sac.
    This last time I tried the dry incubation approach (thinking that perhaps I was drowning them somehow). Temps at 99 and humidity in teh mid to high 30s. On day 18 I added a second glass of water and humidity again spiked to 90s. I took the second glass out and they dropped to mid 50%. Today is day 21 and nothing is happening (and I realize that it is early, but in my earlier positive hatches, chicks started out on day 20. At this point I should have some pips at least or some cheaping. I've got nothing.).

    What am I doing wrong? Why were my early hatches so great and these later hatches no good? The only things different would be that I am not turning these by hand. I've been using the egg carton method and tilting the whole carton from side to side. That shouldn't change who hatches though. Right? This is making me crazy!! [​IMG]

    I have changed batteries in the thermometers and hygrometers. I have cleaned the bator with bleach between hatches. I have run the water cups through the dishwasher on saniwash. The water I add to the cups is always hot and not room temp. The first couple of bad rounds the eggs were from my pen (like all the good rounds earlier in the summer). This set is partially mine and partially eggs from someone else. And according to day 18 candleing, everything in there is developing. Or rather was developing. Who knows what's going on now. Sigh.

    What else could have changed? I am stymied.
     
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2010
  2. CityGirlintheCountry

    CityGirlintheCountry Green Eggs and Hamlet

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    Really? Not a single thought on why my hatches are suddenly going bad? I'm on day 22 and nothing has hatched. I'm guessing they are all dead. [​IMG]
     
  3. rebel yell

    rebel yell Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Alabama
    i would not give up just yet, your temp. at 99 is a little low for a forced air (fan) & also low for a still air which is 101 at the top of the egg, is yours forced air or still air, with the temp running low they could hatch late, your humidity is spiking at 90% ? that is high, you might have drowned them, try not running water the 1st 18 days, then go up to 60-70% humidity. try not to add so much water, humidity goes up depending on the size of the waters surface not how deep your water is.
     
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2010
  4. Sir Birdaholic

    Sir Birdaholic Night Knight

    The Wafer thermostats go bad quite often. get a few for replacements because you'll never know when they will lay down & die.
     
  5. chickee

    chickee Chillin' With My Peeps

    I'm having the same problem with mine! I did have the fan stop during the 2nd to last time I used it and got it to start again by wiggling the wires. Only difference is that I have been hatching shipped eggs, I use an automatic egg turner and my temps run around 100 degrees. I have tried traditional and dry hatch methods. I did notice when my last chicks hatched that the fluff on one was being blown by the incubator fan and that means the fan is blowing down on the eggs instead of out and around the incubator like it is supposed too! [​IMG] I'm thinking about buying a better incubator with humidity control since I'm also wondering if that is also a factor in my poor hatches!! [​IMG] Hope someone jumps in with some advice for both of us!! [​IMG]
     
  6. Sir Birdaholic

    Sir Birdaholic Night Knight

    I hatched with many different incubators over the last many years. I got tired of loosing hatches to this & that so I bought a Sportsman 1502. The best $$ I ever spent! [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  7. chickee

    chickee Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:Thanks birdaholic! [​IMG] I've been wondering what kind of incubator I should get! I'll look into the Sportsman 1502.
     
  8. Sir Birdaholic

    Sir Birdaholic Night Knight

    They're EXPENSIVE, but WELL WORTH IT!
     
  9. CityGirlintheCountry

    CityGirlintheCountry Green Eggs and Hamlet

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    Quote:I went through and candled everything. There was movement (maybe) in one. The others had not developed any further and had no response when I tapped them. They also just looked wrong. The veins weren't their normal healthy color. I pulled out the wellie eggs that looked the worst and cracked them (8 of them). All were dead in various stages of development. I left the one with movement and the four ameraucana eggs (although I think they are dead). Maybe the lone wellie will still make it out.

    The 1588 is a forced air. The 99 is what the directions say to run. It's also what I have run all summer. The hatches in March, April, May and June were great. The three since then have failed, even though the thermometer is reading the same temp. I did replace the batteries in both hygrometer/thermometer units. I'm running two different units in there and checking both. Both were tested back in March before use and were adjusted to match a mercury thermometer and the bag of salt water/75% humidity test.

    Humidity all summer was accomplished by filling up one of my juice glasses and sitting it under the fan. Humidity all summer ran around 40% for days 1-18. I then filled up the water troughs and it stayed in the high 70s/80s through the end of hatch. Great hatches all summer. The two before this one I did exactly the same way. Death for all but one or two eggs. It looked like the others drowned. This time I used a narrower glass for days 1-18. Humidity was in the mid 30s. On day 18 I took out the skinny glass and added two juice glasses with hot water. Maybe I didn't wipe the glasses off thoroughly? The humidity spiked up high. I rechecked it after 10 minutes, realized it was too high and took out one glass. Humidity eventually stabilized back down to mid 50s and has stayed that way.

    Why would all my earlier hatches work and these last ones fail? I am using a mix of my eggs and eggs from others. They are developing to a certain point, so clearly they are fertile. The only thing I am doing different is putting them in cut out egg cartons and tilting the cartons instead of hand turning them. Surely that's not what is killing them. What else could it be?
     
  10. CityGirlintheCountry

    CityGirlintheCountry Green Eggs and Hamlet

    6,950
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    Jul 7, 2007
    Middle TN
    Quote:Sadly, I can't spend $600 on an incubator. I just don't make enough profit to justify an uber expensive incubator. Truthfully, spending $150 on this one seemed like a lot. Plus, this one is only 8 months old. It shouldn't be failing at this point. I just can't figure out what is wrong.
     

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