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Going away for a few days but what about the eggs in the incubator?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by mark22, Aug 9, 2014.

  1. mark22

    mark22 Hatching

    Jun 22, 2014
    Suffolk, England
    So, like many others out there I have been bitten by the 'hatching bug'! Still being new to incubating and hatching my own eggs and reading up a lot about the various techniques I am still having a lot of teething problems. Out of 12 eggs in 2 separate incubators only 2 chicks hatched which was a little disapointing but at the same time rewarding as the ones I now have are a couple of weeks old and doing well in their brooder box. I also have another 6 in an incubator but it looks like none of those will hatch as it's now day 25 and not even a pip, what a shame. As I have my eggs posted I guess it's all down to pot luck right from the start as to whether the eggs are still fertile when they arrive all the way to ensuring that the temperature and humidity are right, but that is the chance when you have to take. Also I have not been using the dry hatch method and from what I have read that does seem to be the popular way to do it, I will certainly try that method next time.

    Anyway, my question now is this; I would like to get some more eggs and hopefully have better luck learning from my mistakes but the problem I have is that I will be going away for a few days in a couple of weeks so therefore I have the problem of turning them. Both my incubators are manual so I currently rotate them 3 times a day but what do I do when I am away? I will be having a friend coming in a couple of times a day to feed and collect the eggs from my fully grown chickens and also check up my 2 chicks but I don't think they will be able to turn my eggs for me as I am more worried that they may break them! Would it really hurt if the eggs were not turned for a few days? If so then the other options are that I should wait to get the eggs from when I return, but I am a little impatient and want to start incubating again as soon as possible, or, do I invest in buying an automatic incubator which would turn the eggs for me and solve my dilemma? The problem is that I don't exactly have that kind of money to start buying another incubator, they are kind of costly. I have only had my Brinsea mini eco for a couple of months if that, in hindsight I should have bought the mini advance instead. I suppose I could sell it and put the money towards a new one, but then again is it really worth it?

    The final option is to buy the eggs and use the natural method of putting them under a broody hen, even easier. The only problem with that is I don't think any of my hens are broody,what would happen if I just put the eggs in the egg box one day whilst they are out and the chickens come back to the coop to find the eggs, do you think one of the hens (I have 4) would start sitting on them or would it be more likely one or more of them would start pecking at them and destroy them?

    What would you do? All suggestions are kindly appreciated, thanks!

  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Free Ranging

    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    To answer the turning question. The first 10-14 days are critical that they get turned. You could put the eggs in an egg carton and put something like a block of wood under one side or end and let your friend just swap ends twice a day.

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