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Incubating

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by anjaneep, Oct 8, 2012.

  1. anjaneep

    anjaneep Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 6, 2012
    what is the huminidy have to be to not drown my eggs? what is the tempeture have to be to not over heat? please help!!!![​IMG]
     
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    First calibrate your instruments so you know what you are dealing with. Don't trust a thermometer especially unless it has been calibrated. I don't worry too much about the accuracy of the hygrometer since you have a lot of lattitude with the humidity, but temperature needs to be right.

    Rebel’s Thermometer Calibration
    http://cmfarm.us/ThermometerCalibration.html

    Rebel’s Hygrometer Calibration
    http://cmfarm.us/HygrometerCalibration.html

    If you have a still air incubator, you need to neasure the temperature right at the top of the eggs. Hot air rises so you can get quite a difference in temperature depending on where you measure. Right at the top of the eggs the temperature should be 101.5 degrees Fahrenheit in a still air.

    If you have a forced air incubator, the temperature should be the same anywhere in there. You should aim for 99.5 degrees Fahrenheit.

    If you are off a bit, your eggs should still hatch. If the incubator is a bit warm, the eggs will hatch earlier than expected. If it is too cool, they will be late. I've had eggs pip and hatch three days early with the incubating temperature a bit warm. They can be just as late if it is cool.

    There is no magic number where the egg goes from everything is fine to all eggs have cooked. Part of that depends on the toughness of the individual egg and part depends on how long it is at those temperatures. Hot is worse than cold, but it takes a while for the center core temperature of the egg to change. Just do the best you can.

    Humidity is harder to talk about because there is so much difference in what works for different ones of us. You'd think that what is going on inside the incubator would be the same for all of us but that is clearly not the case from what different people post. The humidities I use don't work for some other people. We have different kinds if incubators, we are at different altitudes above sea level so air pressure is different, and who knows what else is different.

    If you got instructions with your incubator, I suggest you follow those and see what happens. Youi may find that they work find for you. You may find you need to adjust them based on your hatch.

    I try to keep my humidity during incubation somewhere between 40% and 50%, then raise the humidity during lockdown to 65% or higher. When the chicks start to hatch, that humidity often goes up to 85% and the rest do fine. You'll find that other people have to use totally different humidities to get good hatches. All I can suggest is that you try something and try to be consistent so you can better judge what you might need to change.

    I'm not sure you can get it too high once they actually start to hatch, but you can get it too low. But during incubation, it needs to be low enough that they lose enough moisture. Some people weight them during incubation to make sure they are losing the right amount of moisture but I just shoot for somewhere around 45%.

    Sorry I can't be more precise, but I don't think there is one right answer for all of us.

    Good luck!
     

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