Hatching in egg cartons--I love it!

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by iamcuriositycat, Sep 7, 2009.

  1. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 30, 2009
    Charlotte, NC
    Okay, so I only have three out of their shells so far, but that's how many I hatched total last time, so I thought it would be an appropriate time to compare the standard "on their sides on the wire" method with the "large end up in an egg carton" method. And the winner is... egg carton hatching!

    Benefits I've noticed:

    1. I can arrange the eggs in such a fashion that I am almost guaranteed to see the pip when it occurs.

    2. Hatchlings can't kick the other eggs around so much, preventing damage as well as ensuring I can still watch the pip & zip process

    3. Ducklings actually seem to push the cap open faster

    4. It's tidier--less mess all over the incubator, and the eggs stay lined up neatly, and the egg shells stay in one place instead of getting tracked all over the incubator

    5. The ducklings seem stronger when they get out of the shell. I suspect the reason for that lies in the fact that it takes them a little longer between pushing off the cap and actually exiting the shell. Because of the upright position of the eggs, they have to work pretty hard to get out of the "bowl" of the bottom part of the shell. I suspect that by working hard to do that, and also taking a little longer, by the time they are all the way out, they have simply built up more strength. As a result, they don't seem to go shooting spastically all over the incubator making messes, hurting each other, and rolling over onto their backs and getting into predicaments like they do when they are hatched on their sides.

    Did I miss any benefits?

    Disadvantages:

    1. It takes a little longer for the duckling to exit the shell after popping the cap off. But, as already stated, I don't think this is necessarily a bad thing.

    2. Ummmmm.... I can't really think of anything else...

    Okay, so I do NOT have a scientific sampling here--six eggs total is hardly a sample at all. But combined with everyone else's experience, I hope it's at least a little helpful.

    Now, mind you, the ducklings *do* still get on top of the eggs. It is Harry's favorite place to sleep, as a matter of fact. But it doesn't seem to negatively affect the hatching eggs--certainly it's no worse and probably better than the eggs getting kicked all over the incubator.

    So, I like it. How about you?
     
  2. Katy

    Katy Flock Mistress

    I've been sold on egg carton hatching for the last couple of years.
     
  3. poultryhaven

    poultryhaven Addicted to Seramas!

    Jan 19, 2009
    Ocala, FL
    Does egg carton hatching apply to chicken eggs too? I'm worried that they will get stuck in there and the fall from the egg carton would hurt them. Also couldnt the cartons cause spraddle leg?
     
  4. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 30, 2009
    Charlotte, NC
    Yup, I think the folks who originally recommended it to me were hatching chicken eggs. I was worried at first too, because it seems counterintuitive to make them work *against* gravity by hatching out the top. But it really works very well. I cut the bottoms of the carton out so that the bottom of the egg is actually resting on the wire of the incubator--as a result, the "fall" when they hatch is not very far at all.

    I'm not sure about spraddle leg... someone else will have to answer that one. Sorry!
     
  5. 2txmedics

    2txmedics Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 5, 2009
    Manvel Texas
    interesting topic...pictures??? this might be something to consider, what about feet getting stuck under the bottom of the egg carton opening???

    Or maybe they get turned over and there necks get cauhgt? sorry its the medic in me I have to think of all I can...but since some said they've done it for years now, Im wondering...

    PICTURES!!! lol
     
  6. Katy

    Katy Flock Mistress

    I've never had any issues with the chicks getting out of the egg cartons, or being hurt in the process. Spraddle leg hasn't been an issue either. I don't cut the bottom out of the egg cartons....I just cut the lid off and put the eggs in.
     
  7. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 30, 2009
    Charlotte, NC
    Pics! Here we go:

    [​IMG]

    What I did was take a cardboard egg carton and cut the top off. Then I cut the bottoms off each cup, so that the edges basically just act as supports for the eggs--the eggs themselves sit with their bottoms (the pointy end) on the bottom of the incubator.

    I had an even dozen, so it worked out well, but others say they cut portions of egg cartons to accommodate odd numbers.

    Large end up, of course, and I leaned mine as much as possible while still allowing them to be held in place by the carton.

    I have been marking the air cells, so I could easily see which side they would pip in, and I was correct--they all pipped on the left side of the air cell. Very convenient.

    What else? I can't think of any problems I've seen. Again, once they work their way out of the bottom portion of the shell, they've already gained considerably strength and coordination, so they actually have seemed less prone to accidents. But, obviously, three ducklings is not enough to really be sure.
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2009
  8. 2txmedics

    2txmedics Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 5, 2009
    Manvel Texas
    gotcha, thanks for posting...so, not cutting out a hole in the bottom...as Ive seen in some home made turner for home made bators...it doesnt cut off the air flow to the bottom part of the egg...this is awesome...

    thanks for sharing..might have to try that one day.
     
  9. KDbeads

    KDbeads Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 20, 2009
    East Central VA
    I think this is how I'm going to be hatching my first run. Already have them in a low sided paste board carton, pretty sure I'll leave them in it.
     

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