Incubating question (Some didn't make it.)

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Litewings, Dec 3, 2008.

  1. Litewings

    Litewings Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 25, 2008
    Summerfield, NC
    Hey guys, I've just turned off my GQF 1500 and cleaned it up. I had 23 eggs that didn't hatch. [​IMG] I checked the eggs and 17 were not fertile. Six had developed to what looked like the final stage before pipping. [​IMG] I was wondering, after moving the eggs to a hatching tray and the first three chicks hatched, could they have knocked the other eggs around and caused them to not hatch? Two looked like they had been cracked on the side of the tray. I'm thinking of trying to put in some type of small wooden dowel rods in the bottom of he hatching tray to help keep the eggs more stable and from rolling around. Also, how long can I leave a chick in the hatcher before I need to remove it and place it in the brooder with water and food? It really bothers me that six didn't make it because of my inexperience.
    Thank you all for any help you can give. This forum is the greatest. [​IMG]

  2. LilRalphieRoosmama

    LilRalphieRoosmama Officially Quacked

    Oct 15, 2007
    Elyria, OH
    It happens and it's a learning experience - don't blame yourself. It is quite possible, and that's what happened to me, so after learning from others on here, I hatch in egg cartons. There's no knocking of eggs and it seems to go much better.

    I think the chicks can last around 12 hours, but I never leave them in there that long. I wait until they are dry and fluffy and as long as no other chicks are hatching, I reach in and grab it.

    Practice makes perfect - and [​IMG]
  3. swtangel321

    swtangel321 ~Crazy Egg Lady~

    Jul 11, 2008
    Sorry about the crapy hatch [​IMG] [​IMG] We have all learned from our mistakes, dont be to hard on yourself.
    Check out this site in regards to why they didnt hatch...

    can leave a chick in the bator up to 48 hours without food and water, But if you know your hatch is done I would take them out now!!

    Check this out also, something to think about for your next hatch. might help, ive had much better hatches doing it this way.....

    your worried about the eggs being moved/rolled around to much you could try the carton method, do a search (top of the page) on
    "egg carton method"
  4. Litewings

    Litewings Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 25, 2008
    Summerfield, NC
    Thanks, I had thought about using egg cartons to hold the hatching eggs in. Do the eggs still need to be laid on their side with the large end tilted slightly up?
    Litewings [​IMG]
  5. Buck Creek Chickens

    Buck Creek Chickens Have Incubator, Will Hatch

    Nov 26, 2008
    Neenah, WI
    Did your humidity leavl ever get low? or even run out? moving eggs and bumping for the chicks doesn't seem, for me, to be a problem unless they were roughly handled at the end of incubating. If you stop the eggs from moving the chicks will have a harder time hatching. I've left chicks in the 'bator for three days but 24 hours is all you need you get a better servival rate the sooner you get them out.and if you do it quick you can take them out as soon as the are dry. just don't put the food and water in the 'bator. those 6 might not have hatched ever if you had years of experance.
  6. swtangel321

    swtangel321 ~Crazy Egg Lady~

    Jul 11, 2008
    Quote:Ive never done it (dont like the idea) but no you just put the eggs in the carton big side up pointy/small side down, tilt the carton 3x a day (from side to side) and then when hatch time comes stop tilting up the hum and let chickies hatch !!!
  7. Litewings

    Litewings Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 25, 2008
    Summerfield, NC

    In hind sight it looks to me like I had a multitude of errors.

    Trying to incubate in an unheated garage.
    Temp flux between 52 and 62 degrees.

    I didn't clean the poop off of any of the eggs that I was given before putting them in the incubator.

    Humidity was too high.
    (Humidity was at about 59-61 for 18 days then up to 72-73 for hatching.)

    One of my internet readings said to not open the incubator for 5 days after putting the eggs in the hatcher. (I had one egg hatch early (20th day) and I removed him after 72 hours.) (Also I opened the incubator several times to put the wick on or off of the themometer because the instructions said not to leave it on for more than 6 hours.)

    I'm using the GQF 1500 for a incubator and hatcher.
    (I basically stop the turning and remove the eggs from the racks and placed them on their sides in the lowest tray. I should probably get a second bator for a hatcher.)

    (It was very cold the morning that I opened up the incubator to move the eggs from the egg trays to the hatching tray.)

    This sounds to me like a "Key-Stone-Cop" trying to incubate eggs!

    But, I'm going to get this right. (I've got Marans coming some months down the road, (maybe years) and I'm going to get it right before they get here!) [​IMG]

    Does this sound right?

    Temperature @ 100 degrees
    (The hard part is going to be finding a stable room temperature in the cold months. I don't have a basement.)

    (Humidity level at 54 - 59 percent (wet bulb @ 85-87) for first 18 days and 66 - 80 percent for the last three days in the hatcher.)

    Second incubator for hatching.
    (I'm thinking about the 1588.)

    After moving to hatcher on day 18 don't open again for any reason for 5 days. (What about adding water for humidity?)

  8. Jamie821

    Jamie821 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 26, 2008
    Niota, Tennessee
    I add water with a syringe and fish air hose right through my vent hole. If you put a sponge in just put the sponge under the vent hole. You can also add water to the trays this way. Your humidity is too high for the first eighteen days. The eggs need to evaporate a certain percentage. You ordered you eggs from Buddy right. I am his neighbor. I hatch his eggs for him so I would say it wont be years.
  9. LilRalphieRoosmama

    LilRalphieRoosmama Officially Quacked

    Oct 15, 2007
    Elyria, OH
    I have LG's and Hovabators, and I poked a hole through the base with a pencil, and fed aquarium tubing into the wells. I fill it with a syringe. I also use the auto turners, so I never have to open for the first 18 days.

    Jamie's right though - your humidity is too high. I usually go anywhere from 35-45%, trying to stay closer to 40%. On day 18, I up it to 65-70%. I don't like to go any higher than 75%, and that's only when they are pipping.

    On day 18, I take the eggs off the turner and put them in cardboard egg cartons (with holes in the bottoms for ventilation). I add a wet piece of sponge with a paper towel folded over the top (also dampened) to get the humidity up. I've had eggcellent results with the egg cartons because when the chicks hatch, they aren't knocking the other eggs around.

    You also definitely need a room with stable temps. Anywhere from 100-102 is fine - no higher or lower. Drastic fluctuation = disaster.

    Alot of people say not to open the incubator, but I've found it's ok IF your humidity is over 65%, the chicks are dry and fluffy, and you are fast. If the humidity is low, forget it - don't even try.

    It takes a few times to learn your equipment too, so don't be hard on yourself. Good luck!
  10. erin0415

    erin0415 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 22, 2008
    North Texas
    I've used the egg cartons to hatch with no problems. My eggs are on the egg turner the 1st 18 days, then I place them in the hatcher in the egg carton. The only problem I have seen is that it takes a bit of work for them to get their bodies out of the bottom of the shell, but I have not had any adverse effects from this. I figure all that struggling makes sure they have absorbed the yolk completely. This way they aren't knocking around everywhere and it keeps the mess contained nicely. I use IV tubing and a syringe to add humidity. I would assume aquarium tubing would work just as well. When I have dry fluffy chicks I remove them as long as no one is zipping. I usually squirt a syringe of hot water on one of the sponges when I do this which ensures that the humidity won't drop.
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2008

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