First "Dry hatch method" hatch....are large air cells normal?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by k2chickens, May 16, 2010.

  1. k2chickens

    k2chickens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 22, 2009
    New Castle, Indiana
    Well this is my first shot at a dry hatch. I have seen soooo many people here swear by it so i figured i would give it a go. Im on day 8 and candled and the air cells are quite big 1/3 the size of the egg. I guess this makes since but this size already at day 8? Just didn't know if i was freaking out over nothing. I put in about 3 TBS of water each night before i go to bed. I have been managing to keep my humidity between 20 and 30 when normally i always incubated at around 50%
  2. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 30, 2009
    Charlotte, NC
    What is your ambient humidity? That does sound large to me... I love dry hatching because it leads to air cells a third the size of the egg at lockdown--certainly not before. While I'm no expert, I would probably add some water and raise the humidity at this point. You don't want your eggs to completely dry out.

    Perhaps you are working with drier conditions to begin with? So many variables!!
  3. k2chickens

    k2chickens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 22, 2009
    New Castle, Indiana
    that's what i was thinking. I did flip the switch to 3 on the 1588 before i started because my last hatch was on 101 degrees on the factory setting. If i get more people telling me to up my humidity then i will fill that center well up to the brim. I even thought about adding no water at all for the first 18 day's since this "is" a dry hatch.
  4. chickee

    chickee Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:[​IMG] Are your eggs shipped? With my last hatch of shipped eggs a lot of the air sacs by lockdown were way to large, and those with the largest air sacs didn't hatch [​IMG] The first week of incubation I went with the usual 50% humidity, then I read what great results people were having with the dry incubation method and decided to try it. Where I think I went wrong was that my shipped eggs had been packed in sawdust and looked dry when they arrived, plus when eggs are shipped and shook the membranes can develope tears which makes the eggs more vulnerable to moisture loss! [​IMG] I was lucky and had 9 of the 16 hatch [​IMG] Now I have eggs on day four of incubation (I'm taking part in your June 1st hatch thread) and freaked when I candled today and saw that their air sacs are too large already [​IMG] After the dry hatch method didn't work well for me last time I decided to go with an in-between of 45% but after candling today I added water and brought it up to 50%. I figure I can drop it later if it looks like there is too much moisture. I am using the 1588 Hovabator also and have the center well full which gave me 45 % humidity and added about a couple ounces of water to the well next to it and it brought my humidity up to 50%. I'm afraid if you fill up another well your humidity will be too high. GOOD LUCK~ I will be watching your progress. [​IMG]
  5. MiniBeesKnees

    MiniBeesKnees Chillin' With My Peeps

    Evaporation...creating humidity...happens over surface area, not volume of water.
    That means some container of some given surface shape will evaporate at exactly the same rate whether it is full, or half full.

    Say you have a bucket that is ten inches across full of water...
    ...and you have a dinner plate ten inches across full of water...
    They evaporate and create humidity in a closed space exactly the same amount/rate. Ten inches worth times pi.

    A thin rag with a shot glass full of water in it will give off a tremendous amount of humidity whereas a shot glass full of water won't.
  6. k2chickens

    k2chickens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 22, 2009
    New Castle, Indiana
    Quote:thank you for the information, but im trying to figure out if i should up my humidity due to the large air cells on week one. I think i'm going to do it, the air cells just look wayyyy to big to me. All of the eggs were shipped.
  7. MiniBeesKnees

    MiniBeesKnees Chillin' With My Peeps was just info that sometimes to some is not too obvious. It is logical that if there is one cup of water in an incubator that adding another cup will double the humidity but it is not the volume of water that determines the humidity, but the evaporation rate which is controlled by surface size. So you can increase the humidity by taking the same cup of water and putting it in a soup plate instead of a cup.

    I'm probably just a little obsessed by this as I set my first batch of eggs in my first incubator last night. I'm doing a dry hatch which I think is a misnomer as the humidity in my house right now is 97 inside the incubator has to be at least that, and probably much higher. I have to go buy a hydrometer. But...a hydrometer is a little redundant to the hen sitting in the coop on her eggs that has the same ambient humidity.

    All I know is that on lockdown a large air sack is a good thing but like you I'd worry about one that big so early in the hatch...and that if there is condensation on my viewing window then that is too much humidity.

    I read something about them "drowning" and have to research that. That sounds to me like the air sack is too small when they pip...but I don't know.
    Will upping the humidity cause the air sack to shrink? I would not think would just slow down or stop the enlargement wouldn't it?

    I use the very unscientific method of judging the humidity in my house and therefore my incubator by checking how fast, or dishrag and dishtowels dry. If they don't dry, it is high.
  8. MiniBeesKnees

    MiniBeesKnees Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oh, and all my eggs in the bator are mine. So I'm not factoring in the shipping thing.
  9. k2chickens

    k2chickens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 22, 2009
    New Castle, Indiana



    I guess they are not too bad....i was just really tired two nights ago and must have thought they were bigger lol. Sry for the crappy pictures, it's hard to candle and take pics at the same time [​IMG]
  10. Lotsapaints

    Lotsapaints Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 17, 2010
    Paso Robles, CA
    Your air cells don't look too big...don't stress over it keep your humidity between 35 to 40%. What I do is fill the large water channel in mine it is a round one not square let it evaporate which means it will drop to 25% or so then fill it back up sometimes eggs are thirsty and use a lot of water sometimes not and it depends on how many eggs you have in there. I also hand turn mine so I'm checking them 3 times a day as I get close to lock down as I have some that tonite will go into lock down I'm keeping the humidity at 50% and now I will try to get it up to 65% as they hatch it rises to over 70% then as they finish it drops down to 60. Your air cell doesn't look like 1/3 of the egg if it did I would up the humidity it should be the size of a quarter @ 7-8 days @ 16 days or more the size of a 50 cent or a bit larger. Shipped eggs sometimes will have funny shaped ones but you can still go by the quarter to 50 cent piece rule.


    this is what mine looks like it will hold 50+ eggs I did add windows to it so I can see what is going on but mine has a preset temp with a fan I put in a humidity/thermometer so I can check it but I've been going by the instructions that came with it and it holds it just like I've written. When it was cold I made a insulated box for it to sit in to hold the temperature but now I don't need that. I have had batches of eggs that never hatched (2) from shipped eggs but other eggs in there with them have hatched great I had 11 silkies from 14 eggs and 31 from 36, 4 from 4 etc. I started with eggs that the cost didn't break my bank account and now I don't worry too much if the eggs are good they will hatch if not oh well try again.

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