first timer

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by ChickieKeeta, Mar 25, 2009.

  1. ChickieKeeta

    ChickieKeeta C'mon C'mere Fluffa Feathers

    Feb 16, 2009
    Cumberland County NJ
    I saw the build your own incubator contest. I had never even seen an incubator and knew nothing of how they are made. I used a 40 gallon column aquarium. I zip tied 2 small kitchen racks together. You know, you put the plates under it & the bowls on top. I cut and bent hardware cloth & zip tied it to the racks. It covered the racks and separated the top & bottom of the tank snuggly. It went halfway up one side of the tank. I used a small heat lamp with an incadesent bulb. A walmart thermometer with the humidity reading. I clipped the lamp onto the hardware cloth up the side. I Taped bubble wrap around the tank & cardboard onto the bubble wrap. I laid a divider from a dog crate over the tank. I folded a blanket & covered the tank. The eggs were pointy side down in cartons and I turned them.

    The temp seemed to hold steady at first. The range ended up going from 94 to 131. I quit. Threw the eggs away. I gave my Ameraucana rooster away because the neighbors didn't like him. I decided I'd like to see the babies he could make with the Ameraucana hens & the buff orpingtons. So I tried again with eggs laid on the sixth & seventh days after roo went away. I tried 60, 52 and 40 watt bulbs. I covered more or less of the tank with the blanket trying to find the correct recipe for the temp. There was water under the racks.
    The temp has fluctuated between 96 and 106. My cat would sleep on it & bring up the temp.

    2 days ago I was in TSC. I bought a LG still air without turner. The eggs are in there. There have been temp fluctuations and I am thinking no babies from this roo. I candled today and 9 of 10 eggs have large dark areas. Only 1 was mostly clear.

    I set the eggs 11:30 PM on March 13. I count March 14 as day one. I guess I will see around April third the outcome of this roller coaster of temp ranges.

    Thank you BYC and members. I would not have even tried
    if I had not come here when I did. Whether this works or not I will buy hatching eggs & try again.

  2. katrinag

    katrinag Songster

    Good luck.
  3. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

    May 14, 2008
    North Phoenix
    My Coop
    Be certain to post pics of your new babies when they hatch.

    Mother nature is nice sometimes even with temp fluctuations etc..
  4. dustysangel

    dustysangel In the Brooder

    Mar 20, 2009
    I have a batch due about the same time!! April 4. I had a mess too but not as drasticly as you. I didn't run my new incubator very long before putting in the eggs in and found the temp very high. I have the same mix of chickens you do. I bought a dozen hatching eggs (barred rocks) and 14 of my own. Looking pretty promising looks like all but 7 are doing something! This is my first time out with an incubator and feel pretty fortunate! good luck with yours! Ang
  5. ChickieKeeta

    ChickieKeeta C'mon C'mere Fluffa Feathers

    Feb 16, 2009
    Cumberland County NJ
    Thank you all for the encouragement. I hope I will be posting chickie pics:)
    Good luck with your hatch, Ang!

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