How would YOU do it??

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by BerrytangleFarm, Jan 3, 2011.

  1. BerrytangleFarm

    BerrytangleFarm British and Scandinavian Poultry

    I have 12 eggs being shipped from two different places (both in-state or close to it) today. I expect them to arrive in the next day or two at the latest. I just got some eggs locally taken out from under the chicken as she was laying them (fresh!) that are sitting in a carton being turned twice a day. There is a possibility of more eggs coming from across the country (thank you ChickyChickyBaby!!!) possibly within the next week or so, not sure.

    HOW WOULD YOU SET THEM??

    Put the fresh ones in now, the close-by shipped ones in after they arrive and rest, and the further shipped ones when they arrive and rest?

    Let the fresh ones sit until the close-by shipped ones arrive and rest and put them in together and put the further shipped ones in when they arrive and rest?

    *I can't really trust the freshness of the close-by shipped ones, so they should be set as soon as they arrive and rest.*
     
  2. GreenGoddess

    GreenGoddess Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 6, 2009
    St Pauls, NC
    Honestly, I would go ahead and hold off on the fresh eggs and set them with the nearby shipped ones and then when you get the ones next week, just let them rest and set them also.. My thinking is it would be much easier with a double staggered hatch than a triple staggered hatch.. Less risk of temp and humidity changes affecting the growing embryos..

    Goddess [​IMG]
     
  3. enggass

    enggass Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Do people stagger hatches without using 'separate' hatching bators? If so, how is that handled heat and humidity wise?
     
  4. SundownWaterfowl

    SundownWaterfowl Overrun With Chickens

    Quote:Im sure people do, but I wouldn't do it. Just looking at how dirty and stinky the incubator can get during the hatch, I wouldn't want to keep the eggs in their without cleaning it first.
     
  5. enggass

    enggass Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Good point. The whole notion seems a bit risky...
     
  6. saladin

    saladin Chillin' With My Peeps

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    the South
    First, it depends on the type of incubator you have. For example, mine has 4 drawers. I started setting eggs the first week of Dec and will continue to set and hatch until nearly June with a hatch coming off every single week.

    As to the original question. Don't hold eggs longer than 10 days. Have you ever rec'd hatching eggs before? As you may know they are a crap shoot. One time you'll get maybe (and I say MAYBE) a 50% hatch. The next time you may get one to hatch. There is just so much uncertainty with hatching eggs.

    As for the fresh ones: was the hen already broody? If so, then you needed to have found out for how long? If she had just started within the last 24 hours the eggs would have probably been fine until you made it home. But if she had been on them a few days and you let them sit out for more than 3 or 4 hours.... well then, you might as well toss them.
     
  7. BerrytangleFarm

    BerrytangleFarm British and Scandinavian Poultry

    Quote:I have a still air Hovabator. Sounds likes it's not a good idea to stagger a hatch in that.

    I don't believe the hen in the henhouse was brooding the eggs. It was my impression that she had been in there to lay an egg and we ended up taking that one and the others that were there from other hens that day. At least, that's what I thought. I sure hope they weren't being brooded......darn...hadn't thought of that [​IMG] But they weren't all THAT warm, really. HMMMMMMMMM......
     
  8. Petej

    Petej Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I've done two slightly staggered hatches with my Hova-Bator. It works, but it would be best to do separate hatches only.

    Keeping the dates straight gets a bit confusing....
     
  9. BerrytangleFarm

    BerrytangleFarm British and Scandinavian Poultry

    Quote:Are dates the only real problem?
     
  10. Petej

    Petej Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Not really a problem per say with dates other than they can get a little confusing, but Humidity becomes an issue once the eggs get close lock down time. Eggs on lock-down require higher humidity. Too much humidity for a developing egg can actually be bad for the chick inside. The same goes for too little humidity. If you rmanually turning your eggs, this means opening the unit several times a day, which in turn lowers the humidity in the unit, which could lead to problems.

    Do research here on the forums and on the internet on "Dry" hatching, meaning no added humidity. There is some good, useful information to be found. I was going to try it, but I'm too nervous!

    The best way IMHO, to do staggered hatches is with two incubators, each with the hatch date written on a sticky note. I wrote my hatch dates in Sharpy on my eggs directly, which works, but I was worried the entire time about poisoning the chick inside. [​IMG] This way the humidity can stay at an even level in both units 24/7.

    I have cleaned the incubator between hatches (man does it stink after a hatch [​IMG] ), this means of course the eggs must come out. Eggs can be out of the 'Bator for a little bit without issue, which I think simulates the chicken going to eat and poop....

    When I cleaned my 'Bator between hatches, I put my eggs on the hearth in a warm (90 degrees or so, I did it by feel, just getting close to "bator temp) but not hot spot. When I was done cleaning the unit, the eggs had cooled slightly, but not much. I still had moving embryos. [​IMG]

    I have a third and fourth hatch incubating right now. The time span between them is about a week, so I think they should be good to go in the respect of to much/little humidity for the respective age of eggs. I have 8 Chicken and a dozen Quail incubating right now. This Quail hatch will be the last Quail hatch as they are too fragile for me. Chickens are hardier and can handle the temps of our house a bit better than Quail can.

    I'll let you know how the Staggered hatch in a still air works out. [​IMG]


    I wish you luck with your hatches! [​IMG]
     

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