Incubation Stress

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by marie_martin, Apr 16, 2007.

  1. marie_martin

    marie_martin Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 21, 2007
    Grenada, MS
    I am beginning to think that incubation is not for me. I am so stressed out about my eggs in the bator. They will be on day 18 this evening and I can't keep the temps straight and the humidity up. I tried raising the humidity a little today to see if I could get it up some, I got it to 60% this morning but DH just called me at work and said it is at 45% now. And the temp is dropping some too. This morning it was 99 and right now it is 99 but if I adjust it at all, it goes too high during the day. It has been cooler and so it is cooler in the house, especially at night. I just don't know what else to do. Everything has been fine until the last couple of days. Are these eggs going to hatch like this? I have one sponge in there and water in the bottom. I am going to wipe out the bottom tonight and fill it back up and then put several sponges in to see if I can get the humidity up and then leave them be. I know I can add water through the hole in the incubator (still air little giant). Any other tips? I am so afraid that these eggs wont hatch and it will be my fault. I have seen lots of movement up to this point but it is hard to see movement now, it is dark in there. The air sack is getting larger like it should. Am I worrying for nothing? Are eggs pretty resilient? Thanks.

    Marie
     
  2. pipermark

    pipermark Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 26, 2007
    Arkansas
    Marie throw a pan of water and all the sponges that will fit tonight, and then dont open the incubator again.

    I would warm the water up to 100 degrees before putting it in the bator or soaking the sponges, (this way the incubator dosent have to warm them up. The drop in temp you are speaking off shouldnt be that bad, what you dont want is a spike over 102, so be careful with the thermostat, remember it is not measuring the temp inside the egg , so short term flucuations means very little IMHO.
     
  3. marie_martin

    marie_martin Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 21, 2007
    Grenada, MS
    Well, my hygrometer shows inside and outside temps so I am using the water weasel to show what the temp would be on the inside of the egg and that is the reading I gave you. And it was about the same as the inside of the bator, so obviously the temp had been lower for a while. I think it is just getting cool in the house at night. I may have to put it in my bathroom and turn on the heater in there for the next few days. It only just barely warms up the bathroom, not like a real heater, just a warm air fan. What do you think? That is where I am going to put the brooder too because no one really uses that bathroom except for me, it is a half bath. I just wish I could be home more during the day. But I guess you do what you can. Thanks.

    Marie
     
  4. Juliechickens

    Juliechickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 7, 2007
    Memphis, TN
    Hey Marie,
    I don't think you have anything to worry about either. My Brower incubator is not good at holding in humidity at all. I added a wet rolled up wash cloth to mine filled with warm water. I worried like you with my first hatch but my eggs hatched with probably around 50-60% humidity. I didn't have a humidity thermometer the first go round some how I managed. The most important thing I learned with my first batch is how important it is once the first chick has pipped the egg is to KEEP that lid CLOSED at that point!!! I did not do this....I kept adding more warm water and I ended up having a chick get stuck in it's egg after it had completely pipped around the whole egg. Talk about stress trying to little by little help him out of his shell with an eye dropper of warm water and tweezers! You don't want to go there!
    So my best advice is to leave the lid closed after the first pipping. Also,,maybe warm your house a bit with the heater if it's cold in there to help maintain the temperature.
    One more thing I did during the hatch,,,,if you are realllllly worried about low humidity is to take a water spray bottle and warm up the water in it( not too hot) and through the top air holes in your incubator, the ones that you remove the plugs from,,,point that nozzle in and give it a couple of sprays from time to time. That will really cause your humidity to go up quickly! It will gently mist the eggs if your incubator is having trouble holding in the humidity. Make SURE you use WARM water! I'm curious to know what kind of incubator you have...?? Good luck! Julie [​IMG]
     
  5. marie_martin

    marie_martin Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 21, 2007
    Grenada, MS
    I just have the still air little giant. Thanks for the info. I will definitely remember to keep it closed. I have not taken out both plugs, just one. I think I read on the instructions that I don't need to have the second one out unless the temp and humidity are too high. So I think I am ok with that. I am going to put the sponges in tonight and will put them right under the hole, that way I can add warm water to the sponge through a straw as needed and wont have to lift the lid. Thanks so much for all the advice. I guess I just feel responsible for those babies. And I have gone from 17 eggs in the beginning, 14 shipped and 3 of my own, down to 9, 7 shipped and 2 of mine. So I just want them to be ok. Thanks for your support. It is hard but it is encouraging with you guys support, I mean it.

    Marie
     
  6. SkeeredChicken

    SkeeredChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 27, 2007
    Orlando, Florida
    Quite honestly, I think foam incubators, or the like, are a slight bit under powered. They do seem to have a bit of a problem holding temps or even getting up to temp. The problem is, room temperatures do fluctuate some. The best thing to do is put it somewhere where it doesn't fluctuate alot. Yes, keep it closed, too. Another trick would be to stick a blanket or something similar over it to help it hold. I home built an incubator, and it seems to keep the temps, no matter what it is outside of it. Two 60 watt bulbs were a bit over powering (maybe), but that things rarely fluctuated much.

    Good Luck
     
  7. marie_martin

    marie_martin Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 21, 2007
    Grenada, MS
    Well, I agree that this thing won't hold a temp when the temp in the house drops, but when the temp in the house is stable, it holds pretty good and has tried to go too high but I caught it. It was very stable for a while, but lately started to drop, because we have had a cool spell and have tried to not run much heat at night because it makes us stuffy. So I think that is the problem. I will just have to keep the house temp stable and a bit warmer. If I cover it, would that not cover up the holes and cause the air to get stagnant? I also wondered about the sponges I am putting in there wet, wont they sour? Will that hurt? I never thought of that before. Thanks for your tips. Maybe one day I can afford a better bator, but for now, this is what I have.

    Little Giant Still Air
    No egg turner
    No fan

    Thanks,
    Marie
     
  8. skeeter9

    skeeter9 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Marie,
    Make sure to let us know what happens with your hatch. I know it's hard waiting and not knowing what's going on inside the eggs. Right now I have a hen setting eggs and they are on day 22 - no chickies yet!!!

    Best of Luck!!


    SkeeredChicken,
    How did you make your incubator so that it holds temp and humidity well?
     
  9. Juliechickens

    Juliechickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 7, 2007
    Memphis, TN
    Marie,
    I have all my eggs in the Little Giant incubators up until day 18 and then they go in my Brower incubator. I like it because it has a full clear lid so I can view everything as they hatch. However,,,my little giant incubators hold heat and humidity wayyyyyy better! I lost electricity a couple times during my incubation and those little giants kept the temp with my eggs in it nice and cozy. Mine are also still air incubators. Only my Brower has the fan on it during hatching.
    I would not open another hole on top of yours if you are having trouble with the heat and humidity for sure. After everyone has hatched though and before they dry,,I might open another one just so they can get some more air.
    Good luck to you and your babies....you'll do fine!
    Julie
     
  10. marie_martin

    marie_martin Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 21, 2007
    Grenada, MS
    Thanks guys. I mean it. I will let you know what happens. I am probably over reacting. But that is pretty common for me. I will let you know what happens as it happens. Good luck to all of you and thanks again.

    Marie
     

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