I will never consider myself an "expert"...

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Dread Pirate Roberts, Apr 21, 2009.

  1. Dread Pirate Roberts

    Dread Pirate Roberts Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 20, 2009
    NorCal
    ...but this is what works for me.

    This is my second consecutive 90% hatch after dismal failures in prior attempts, so this thread is my attempt to "pay it forward".

    These are three dozen Cuckoo Marans eggs from a local organic farm/vineyard/winery. Yes, I used a Sharpie.
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    I weigh all eggs on Days 1, 10 and 18. The goal is to achieve a weight loss of ~12% on Day 18.
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    It's my belief that there is no "magic number" for humidity (until Days 18+). Humidity is merely a tool used to manipulate weight loss and the ideal humidity for you will be something for you to figure out based on how much weight your eggs are losing, not based on what somebody on the interweb tells you. For me, in my 'bator, in my climate and at my altitude, I aim for the following:
    Days 1-17: 35-40%, drop to 25% for a few hours before adding water.
    Days 18+: 58% and I allow it to rise as it may when the peeps start hatching. This increased humidity on Days 18+ is essential in keeping the membraned slick and pliable, otherwise the peeps will be shrink-wrapped and they will die.
    Ventilation: as much as possible while still maintaining humidity.

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    Day 18: Out of the turners and into the cartons. These silly little styrobators don't hold enough water for my climate, thus the extra dishes and sponges.
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    In the holding cell...
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    Marek's vaccine...
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    In the brooder...
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    A cute little feather-legged poulet...
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    Final result: 27 of 30 hatched. There were 6 duds which I left in there because they were not stinky, but I ain't counting those against my hatch rate. [​IMG]
     
  2. Panther Creek Poultry

    Panther Creek Poultry Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 5, 2008
    Clarksburg, MO
    Excellent observations. Can you tell us how much the eggs should have lost by each weighing interval, in your opinion. Do they lose more in earlier or later stages?
     
  3. daisychick

    daisychick Incubator Tetris Master Consultant

    Feb 8, 2009
    Colorado
    yes, could you give us a sample egg weight loss. Like how much it weighed on day 1, 10 and 18. I think you have it figured out! That is great! [​IMG]
     
  4. Dread Pirate Roberts

    Dread Pirate Roberts Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 20, 2009
    NorCal
    This batch only lost an average of 10.5% by Day 18 and at Day 10 they had lost 5.7%.

    Next time, I'll try to be a little more aggressive with the humidity.
     
  5. daisychick

    daisychick Incubator Tetris Master Consultant

    Feb 8, 2009
    Colorado
    So does that mean the humidity was a little too high? Is that was causes them to not lose weight they should?
     
  6. Dread Pirate Roberts

    Dread Pirate Roberts Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 20, 2009
    NorCal
    Quote:Egg #4
    Day 1: 69.2 grams
    Day 10: 64.6 (-6.6%)
    Day 18: 61 (-11.8%)

    Egg #21
    Day 1: 61.7
    Day 10: 58.7 (-4.7%)
    Day 18: 56.1 (-9.1%)

    These are from the higher and lower end of the weight loss spectrum and both hatched.
     
  7. gabrielle1976

    gabrielle1976 Overrun With Chickens

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    Feb 21, 2009
    Columbia river gorge
    Thank you that was very imformitive, I think guildlines really help people but you are right a 45% Humidity for somone in washington and one in nevada are very very diffrent things ect .
    THanks again [​IMG]
     
  8. Dread Pirate Roberts

    Dread Pirate Roberts Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 20, 2009
    NorCal
    Quote:Yeah. They lose the weight through evaporation, so higher humidity inhibits weight loss. It appears that higher humidity is required at higher altitudes in order to keep the weight loss from becoming excessive. There's a real Hoss of a thread here in this forum about that. It's like 24+ pages and was started by kryptoniteqhs.
     
  9. tryingtohaveitall

    tryingtohaveitall Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 17, 2009
    SW Ohio
    GREAT thread! Thanks for the pics and information. It's very helpful and interesting for us newbies. [​IMG]
     
  10. daisychick

    daisychick Incubator Tetris Master Consultant

    Feb 8, 2009
    Colorado
    I am trying to watch my aircells a lot better this time around. I am at 5800 elevation and really dry climate. I have had good hatches but no where near 90%. I am on day 4 in the bator and now I am wishing I would of weighed them all! [​IMG] I read the higher altitude thread and think my humidity the last half of incubating has been my problem. Thank you so much for sharing this with us! I really want to try it! Do you think it is too late to weigh mine now??
     

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