incubator vs. hatcher

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by as110, Mar 24, 2017.

  1. as110

    as110 Chillin' With My Peeps

    94
    19
    51
    Feb 16, 2017
    Falkland BC
    I just watched a video where they made a point that the incubator is different from a hatcher. We have a home made incubator and we thought chicks could hatch in there. What is the difference between the incubator and the hatcher?
    Can we make adjustments to the incubator or do we need to build a separate hatcher?
     
  2. AmyLynn2374

    AmyLynn2374 Humidity Queen

    15,019
    2,496
    416
    Oct 11, 2014
    Gouverneur, NY

    Your chicks can hatch just fine in the incubator. A good many of us only have one incubator that we use for both incubation and hatching. Incubators are designed for the whole process. Some, especially those who do staggered hatches have a second incubator or hatcher so that they aren't having to play with the humidity and have it affect the eggs not ready for hatch conditions. Your large scale incubation places do have separate equipment for incubation and hatching as well, but us little table top hatchers only need one.
     
  3. PD-Riverman

    PD-Riverman Overrun With Chickens

    5,000
    1,197
    366
    Jan 14, 2012
    Conway SC
    NONE! Except the hatcher does not turn the eggs. Example---if you take a Styrofoam incubator and turn the eggs several times a day either by hand or using a turner----you got a Incubator, now remove the turner or quit turning the last 3 days---you got a hatcher. Nothing different except for described and you need to raise the humidity higher in the hatcher.
     
  4. as110

    as110 Chillin' With My Peeps

    94
    19
    51
    Feb 16, 2017
    Falkland BC
    I typed up a long response last night and the screen refreshed and I lost it all. So this is my 12 year old kids' school project. The idea was to make an incubator that works with items we had at home so there was 0$ spent. We expected two chickens out of the 18 and that would have been an awesome outcome. This is the first time they are hatching eggs. I am monitor and turned the. 24/7 in my bedroom. However we have 17 of the 18 moving. We never expect this kind of success the firt try. We were able to keep the temperature at the same level. We do not have a hygrometer. We checked the size of the air cell and since it was a good size we assumed humidity was at the right level too. Is that the correct assumption?

    Now that we have all these eggs hatch potentially, I would really like this to work out. I have to find the hygrometer packed somewhere in storage. it would be a sin to ruin the experiment, but until we find one or buy one, is there anything we could do with the water and the sponge? Double the amount of water on hatching day? We are two days away from lockdown.
     
  5. PD-Riverman

    PD-Riverman Overrun With Chickens

    5,000
    1,197
    366
    Jan 14, 2012
    Conway SC
    How are you controlling the temp??

    Humidity is controlled by water surface---not depth---So you have to increase water surface to increase humidity. Example--like a sponge that is soaked all sides/edges are water surface---different than a container which only the top of the water is water surface, But a sponge dries out quick. If you added a second sponge that would increase your humidity a lot. I use containers---say 2 to 3" deep so it does not dry out like a sponge that would require you to soak it often. Soooooo if you do not have room for containers---double your sponges and keep them wet but not dripping for your experiment! Still wondering about how you are controlling the temp??


    Edited to add---its best to add warm water(around 100 degree's) any time you have to add water to your containers/sponges.
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2017
  6. AmyLynn2374

    AmyLynn2374 Humidity Queen

    15,019
    2,496
    416
    Oct 11, 2014
    Gouverneur, NY
    Yes, you can (and in my opinion should) use air cells to confirm and guide your humidity. I would get a hygrometer as a guide, especially for hatch.
    http://letsraisechickens.weebly.com...anuals-understanding-and-controlling-humidity that is my humidity guide
     
  7. as110

    as110 Chillin' With My Peeps

    94
    19
    51
    Feb 16, 2017
    Falkland BC
    There is not much controlling needed because the temperature is always the same. When the box was new the temp was 40C that's too high. We put holes on the sides to vent and it brought it down to 37C and that's lower than I wanted it. I covered the box on 3 sides and half the top with blankets and it has bern 38C ever since. Except for one power failure that lasted 3 hours on day 10. I warmed u.up the box quickly with warming pads on the sides and the top but we have not needed it since the power came back. I check in the box every 1-2 hours even at night when I wake up several times. I am not a good sleeper. The box is in my bedroom which is the warmest room in the house. I have a feeling the temp would not be high enough in any other room vut I do 't mind it in here. I might reconsider this once they hatch. If they are too noisy they will have to move out.
    The sponge is in a container to keep the box dry. I add enough water to make the sponge sopping wet, the extra water sits on the bottom anyway but it comes up into the sponge as it dries. I always add warmed water. Opening the door on top for turning does not seem to bring the temperature down and I try to do it swiftly although I seem to like to touch the eggs. I use clean gloves. The chicks already have grown on me lol, especially number 5.
    Tomorrow evening is lockdown. It will be nice to have a bit of break. Doing all this monitoring and turning feels like I am literally sitting on the eggs.
    I will candle one last time tomorrow.
    I found a thermometer with hydgrometer for $13 at home depot. I will pick ip up tomorrow.
     
  8. PD-Riverman

    PD-Riverman Overrun With Chickens

    5,000
    1,197
    366
    Jan 14, 2012
    Conway SC
    I use these, https://www.walmart.com/ip/AcuRite-Digital-Humidity-and-Temperature-Monitor/16888914 but I always test them before I set my eggs----would not want to stick a new one in at lock down and go by it---It might be off.

    You mentioned holes drilled on the sides---my concern would be if these holes are or will be letting out to much humidity for the hatch?? But you sure would not want to close up some if it would make the temp rise. Maybe just add more water surface if the humidity is to low Good Luck
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2017
  9. lilwildrabbit

    lilwildrabbit Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,225
    220
    126
    Feb 9, 2017
    Brinson Georgia
    I bought a thermometer/hygrometer at Walmart for about 8 bucks if you want to save a couple dollars
     
  10. as110

    as110 Chillin' With My Peeps

    94
    19
    51
    Feb 16, 2017
    Falkland BC
    The holes are there for air exchange but it was also vented when we opened to turn the eggs. That is why we didn't put a lot of holes.
    I think I will chech the humidity at least to confirm that we are in the right ball park, to see if that one sponge is the right size or it needs more.

    How do you know when the hygrometer is not measuring right? I would 't know the difference.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by