Incubating eggs first time


In the Brooder
8 Years
Feb 26, 2011
Have 13 eggs in Hovobator still air. Eggs started over 4 day period 2/11, 2/12, 2/19 and 2/20. (The 2/19 and 2/20 eggs are from a hen that was predated and were taken from refrigerator). All have candled fertile all but one of the 2/20 eggs shows movement. Temperature has been keep at 99.5 to 100.5. Small amount of distilled water kept in rings and both red vent plugs are in place. No condensation. I thought I was doing well but started reading on this forum and paniced! Four of the eggs are from the hen we lost and thus a lot is riding on their success. I would appreciate any advice on giving myself the best chances of success.
Well you should have a still air bator running at 101.5 degrees. The lower temp is not bad, they just may take a day or two longer to hatch. Good luck.
Thank you for the advice. I realize if they hatch they will be staggered from what I read humidity should be increased in the last three days. I didn't realize I should measure humidity. Should I leave well enough alone and continue keeping a small amount of water in the rings under the eggs? The four important eggs are from a Sebright hen the others are all from standard hens.
GENERALLY speaking... generally... the set "trays" for water work out just right. Now, if you are in a humid enviorment or season where you live... the outside humidity effects the inside of your incubator. That said... I hardly EVER measure humidity and do just great... but then again.. I set it and forget it. And I use 8 still air hovabators... no fans. Don't care for it. A hen doesn't have fans.

If you feel you want to do the absolute best for these eggs... go get a "acurite" thermometer/hygrometer from walmart... it has a temp sensor on the end of a cord.... put that sensor right perfect between two eggs... so that is the "center" of the egg from top to bottom. THAT is where it should read around 99.5 in a still air. (remember, hot air rises and a still air is hotter the higher you go) You can leave the mercury flat thermometer that came with the incubator on top of the eggs for good measure and it should read about 100 (slightly higher but not yet 102).
If you place the bottom of the handheld part of the acurite barely over a vent hole (without covering the vent) then you will get a pretty darn accurate reading of the humidity level.

Like I said... never had to add or subtract water from the set "trays". I live in SE TN and hatch nearly year round... only taking a break durring the holidays.

Good luck! You'll do fine!!! Just don't fiddle... set it and forget it!!
You guys are great. Thank you for all the encouragement. I'll keep posted re progress. Ready for lockdown for the first 7 in 1.5 days. I'll install hydrometer tomorrow. I like "hens don't have fans" love it, true enough. Whick brings me to how does the hen increase humidity and to stop turning eggs?
I am a newbie right there with ya! Mine are due to hatch on 3/3 and I'm hatching them in little giant still-air incubator. Only about half of my eggs have developed so I have lots to learn apparently. My hatch can be seen on ustream since I'm streaming live for my 2nd grade class to see. Google Sycamore Chick Hatch to join us!!
I just have encouragement for you, others have more experience then I do, but I lost all 18 of my hens just over 3 weeks ago. I took the eggs out of my fridge (with encouragement from here) bought an incubator and turner and as of today have one hatched, three more pipped and who knows from there but I've got at least a bit of one from my girls back. So far we're calling her the $100 chick since that's what the bator cost!

Good luck to you and with the help from all these nice people who answer the same questions and calm the nerves of all of us newbie's over and over again like it was the first time anyone asked it, you're sure to have some success!
We have 9 out of 12 caqndled in home ade bator so far so good I WAS HOPING FOR AT LEAST 1 to ;)HATCH I may end up w/ more . Also just ordered the rarest of rare for oldest daughter 26 of who knows what kind of chickens . My wife asked what are (YOU going to do w/ ALL these chickens and EGGS!!!!)

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom