First Time Hatching Eggs....any advice appreciated

JAK Rabbitry

10 Years
May 22, 2009
Freedom, PA - Pittsburgh area
So I have a nice little flock of various laying hens, and after my RI and Silkie roosters passed away, a local breeder gave me a nice Aracauna roo to woo the ladies. She had kept him solitary for a long time so that her better rooster would be breeding the hens, so needles to say as soon as I put 'Romeo' in with my hens, they were all rather happy to see each other. So as of Wed Mar 3, he'll have been in there playing Casanova for a week.
Is this long enough to have fertile eggs on my hands? I don't want to waste a perfectly good omelet.

I have purchased a Little Giant still air incubator and egg turner from TSC for starters. And I'm cheap. Both parts come with a lengthy instruction manual, and I figure if I buy something and I HAVE to read up on how to use it, then I'm doomed. I'm going to follow the directions best I can, but if there's anything that may not be mentioned in the book that you may want to add, I'll eat the info like candy.

So i'm thrilled to have BYC around to help walk me through the whole process and hopefully I can be a peep-making machine by the end of summer.

This will be my first hatch too. I got a 1588 genisis.
Here's a link to my post. Maybe you can get answers there too.
A week is plenty of time for them to be together if he is as active as you said. Important things with incubators is to get the temperature consistant, measure it at top of eggs, not floor, and if you dont keep the humidity consistent and correct for what you are hatching, there will be problems, including deformed chicks that hatch. But it is one of the most rewarding and funnest things ever, so hope you keep going.
Are you using a still air or fan? Do you have a turner in it or are going to manually turn them? I was told to throw the book away! LOL, Don't just wing the humidity by following the instructions you will more than likely either drown your chicks or have sticky chicks. here is what I am following for incubation and 40 of 43 eggs are developing, and they was all shipped eggs! Basically I ran my incubator long enough before to get the humidity around 40%, then I dont fill it up with water until, it drys up which means the humidity drops to around 25% then fill it back up. I do use water that is at room temp. I started out with a container of water that I left set out for 3 days to distill it and let it get to room temp, now I just refill with a big cup of water as it is ready to add. You should test your hygrometer with the salt water test If you dont have one you can get a combination digital thermometer/hygrometer by accurite at wal-mart for $8, (but make sure you test it every time before you start a new set of eggs d/t bumping or weak batteries it can make it be off) Both of mine was off when I first bought them by 8 & 10 % now i just add that to the reading it gives. If I hadn't checked it they would have drowned. They say to not use the thermometers that come with them b/c they are off by at least 2 degrees. hints why I bought a combination. Good LUCK!
From the original post: "I have purchased a Little Giant still air incubator and egg turner from TSC for starters"

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