Incubating at home for newbie do it yourself in Tennessee

Discussion in 'Hatch-A-Longs' started by BrownTown, Mar 20, 2017.

  1. BrownTown

    BrownTown Just Hatched

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    Mar 20, 2017
    Attempt 1-Fail
    So instead of giving up after my first batch I decided to make a journey out of it and document how everthing goes both right and wrong. Our weather here is Bipolar seriously it cant choose between hot and cold.So here we go! We started with a Styrofoam cooler we got the medium size since this is our first ever batch, next we had a old light that we had not used in years with a 25 watt bulb. We got a white bulb but i dont know if it makes a difference.

    We added water and paper towels for humidity until it was perfect.
    I have read 55-70 from day 1-17 then from 18 till 24 hours after hatch it needs to be 65-70

    I have also read the Temp needs to be between 97-101f
    With my first set I do not know what I did wrong but this was the home and by day 10 almost all had the Blood Ring as you can see. I had 2 that i couldnt tell and of those 2 only 1 have a live baby chick still it was itty bitty.
    [​IMG]

    T
    [​IMG]




    Attempt 2
    Today I took the advice and tried to change up the incubator (well my husband did) I placed water in the bottom and covered it with chicken wire. The temp has been changing all day but i did get 2 eggs today. I have 3 rhode island reds and i wish they where broady. Ill be monitoring the temp and humidity for the next few days.

    [​IMG]

    Good News!!
    We are on day 7 I was having quite a bit of trouble with my incubator for 2-3 days before my husband decided to take matters into his own hands. He went to my grandparents and got some junk (a old thermostat, cooler, light, laptop fan, glass) and let me just tell you his incubator is perfect. I watched it almost all day and the temp finally stabilized. I then transfered my eggs to the new incubator. Today I candled my 7 day old eggs and GUESS WHAT?? VEINS!! Its still going to be a long run but there is hope! [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2017
  2. br0nc0

    br0nc0 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 14, 2017
    Slovenia
    I'm afraid this doesn't look good... what kind of incubator/settings are you using (temperature, humidity)?
     
  3. BrownTown

    BrownTown Just Hatched

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    Mar 20, 2017
    My husband made a still air incubator. We tested it for 2 days prior to putting eggs in it and the temp stayed around 99-100 and humidity 55-60. I did candle them daily so I have a feeling that was the cause. Out of 11 eggs only 2 had even started to Form but had a clear ring and the other I questioned and did last and it was tiny as a pebble but I could see the heart beating. [​IMG]
     
  4. br0nc0

    br0nc0 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 14, 2017
    Slovenia
    Well now that I see your incubator, two things come to mind. First thing is turning - I know you probably read about that, but still... Turn for an odd number of times each day so the egg doesn't rest on the same side during night (and minimum of 3 turns per day). It helps to have the eggs marked on both sides (x and o for example) so you know they are properly turned. Second thing is ventilation, do you have any holes at the bottom so the air circulates properly? I wouldn't blame it on the candling, as long as you're not doing it for an hour straight with the lid open.

    Other than that, poor flock nutrition (which I don't find likely) or bacterial infections are a possible cause.

    I personaly use around 50% humidity (45-55) for days 1-18 and 60%-70% for the lockdown.

    If I were you, I would put some wire mesh on the bottom (elevated about 3-4") and pour the water in the bottom, make holes slightly above water level and put the eggs on top. Then try taking temperature in different areas to see if it's uniform and maybe check with another thermomether, some are faulty from the start.
     
  5. BrownTown

    BrownTown Just Hatched

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    Mar 20, 2017
    How much water and holes would you recommend?
    I have hols thruout the box to keep the temp controlled and what do you mean right above the water?
     
    Last edited: Mar 21, 2017
  6. br0nc0

    br0nc0 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 14, 2017
    Slovenia
    Well the ammount of water you put in depends on what humidity you want, For me, less humidity usually works better. Remember that humidity is controlled by surface area of water not by depth.

    What I mean by vents above the water is this:



    ___________________________ top lid
    |
    | <- vents
    |
    |
    |
    |
    | OOO eggs
    |- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - wire mesh
    | <- vents above water level
    |___________________________bottom - filled with water


    That is how I would do it atleast, it still might not fix the problem though.
     
  7. BrownTown

    BrownTown Just Hatched

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    Mar 20, 2017
    I tried to do it this way yesterday till midnight and it wouldnt work my humidity wouldnt come up past 32 and my temp was 109 i tried leaving the lid up, plugging holes, opening holes and had no luck. So I ended up adding a bowl of water also and a rag and eveything is finally been steady for 24 hours. I decided to try with only 3 eggs. [​IMG]
     
  8. br0nc0

    br0nc0 Out Of The Brooder

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    Slovenia
    well, I wouldn't worry too much about humidity not being over 30%, some people do "dry hatches" and 30% is normal for that, just make sure there's plenty of humidity on the last 3 days. Do you think the bulb might be too strong for a small space like that?
     
  9. BrownTown

    BrownTown Just Hatched

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    Mar 20, 2017
    I have a 25 watt bulb and lots of holes in the container is there a lower watt bulb? The temp has been semi stable today, at night it dropped and i had to cover holes then today i had to take the lid off because it kept staying at 102.
     
  10. br0nc0

    br0nc0 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 14, 2017
    Slovenia
    Well I guess those temperature changes are what went wrong with the first hatch. Short periods of +-1 degree aren't a really big issue, for still air incubator you should have 101°F or 101.5°F anyway - measured at the top of the eggs. I don't know exactly how you could accomplish that, but the most important thing to do is to get the temperature as stable as possible. Also make sure the room temperature stays as constant as possible - unstable room temperature ruined a couple of hatches for me.
     

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