First Time Incubating Chicken Eggs/Questions!

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Patchesnposies, Oct 16, 2008.

  1. Patchesnposies

    Patchesnposies Chickens.....are my ONE weakness!

    Mar 5, 2008
    Southern New Mexico
    Dh and I are trying our hand at incubating chicken eggs for the first time. We have an old still air incubator that is very reliable as far as temps and keeping the humidity stable.

    We have been incubating duck eggs and had our first duckling arrive last week! It was so exciting that we (stupidly) ordered some black Langshan eggs (24) because we wanted to try chicken eggs.

    I say, stupidly, because we also ordered another incubator that is taking its sweet time about getting here. If we were smart we would have made sure the incubator was here and stable BEFORE we ordered the eggs!

    We have room to put the chicken eggs in with the duck eggs, until the new incubator arrives. The duck eggs are due to hatch on the 25th. We are thinking we could move the ducklings to the new incubator and let them hatch there, and let the chicks in the old incubator, is that a good idea?

    What is the best temp for hatching chicken eggs and how much humidity do they need? I have read a lot about this, but was wondering what folks who have done this for a while feel works best.

    Our Langshan eggs arrive today. I know we need to let them settle with the points down. How long should we do this?

    Also, I have read a lot of posts that say not to open the incubator very much. We try to turn our eggs at least five times in 24 hours, is this opening the incubator too much?

    I know we should not turn the duck eggs during the last couple (2-3?) days, is this true for chicken eggs too?

    Any and all advice as we try to hatch our first chicken eggs would be so appreciated!

    No need to tell us that we rushed into this foolishly unprepared.....we know this!!!

    Deb
     
  2. lockedhearts

    lockedhearts It's All About Chicken Math

    Apr 29, 2007
    Georgia
    I think for a few days they would be ok to put in the other bator. I have never done ducks but I think the humidity for hatching needs to be higher, but if the chicken eggs are in there for a few days you should be fine.

    I think you could go either way with hatching the ducks. I guess it depends on when the other bator gets there and how quickly you can get it up and stable.

    I just moved some last night , as I needed to return a borrowed bator and they had been incubating over a week in the one.

    Chickens should be at 99.5 in a forced air and about 101 in a still air. Recommended humidity is around 35-40 for incubation and 50-60 for hatching.

    Personally I have had issues so I keep my humidity a bit lower. But that is based on my house and personal experience.
     
  3. KellyHM

    KellyHM Overrun With Chickens

    7,096
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    Sep 10, 2008
    Lakeland, FL
    A lot of people use one incubator for incubating and one for a hatcher during the last 3 days, so you should be fine doing that.

    Chicken eggs should be around 100 degrees and 35-40% humidity, then up the humidity to 65% the last 3 days. You also stop turning them the last 3 days. They only take 21 days.

    You should let the eggs settle 6-12 hours after they get there, small end down.

    I turn my eggs 3 times a day, partly b/c I don't have time to do it 5 times, and partly so I don't open the bator too much.

    Other than that you should be good to go. There's a sticky at the top of the incubating forum page that you can read also.
     

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