All great suggestions. I switched to dry incubation myself... I don't add any water at all until lockdown. But I don't think it's as dry where I'm at. I wouldn't consider it humid, but not necessarily "dry". My hatch rates have drastically improved.
I have the j12 as well. I found that adding 100ml at a time keeps the humidity way too high. I've been adding only about a tbsp at a time every day or two and that seems to keep it between 45 and 55, and I haven't had any trouble keeping temp steady. Funny how we can all have such different experiences with the same product.
One thing I have found handy is that if I place my hygrometer over the little vent hole occasionally it gives me a rough idea of changes in humidity without having to open the lid.
I find that the ambient temp and humidity makes a big difference as to how much water to add. I like keeping my humidity between 30% - 40 % during the first 18 days for incubating. We had a lot of rain here in Oklahoma during my last incubation so the ambient humidity was up and I only rarely added any water. I increase the humidity to around 65% for hatching.
Having said all of that, sometimes, I only need to add 5 - 10 ml of water at a time. Start with a small amount and see what your humidity does.
Hello, I have been reading a little about the Janoel 12 incubator and have looked online for better instructions, as the one included in the box for us english speaking people is incomprehensible, to put it nicely. And I am an American, so my english isn't proper english anyway!
I am very good at interpreting what people whose native tongue is not english are trying to say in english, I have lived abroad and traveled all over the world but some of these instructions have even me baffled. So, let me do a simple quick run through for how to get it set up and going.
Hatching shipped eggs: Let them sit pointed end down in an egg carton for 24 hours at room temp, in the room you will have the incubator running in. because you don't know the breeder as well as yourself, don't know cleanliness, if they cleaned off the poo before shipping to you, if there is some still on there, etc. you need to sanitize your eggs before putting them in your incubator. If you see any brown spots or streaks on the egg, wipe it off gently with a dry piece of material, dish rag, paper towel, etc. then, get out some purified bottled water- I use this for my wash solution and rinse water. I use Brinsea brand Incubation disinfectant concentrate, and follow the directions on the bottle EXCEPT- I make sure the water temp of the wash solution is 100* F, and then I rinse them off with 100* F of the bottled water. Wash your hands first! After sanitizing and rinsing them, I let them set on a paper towel and dry at room temp, then I load them in the incubator. Any time I touch the eggs after this, I wash my hands first. I dont candle my eggs until the 18 day when I remove the turner, and I only toss eggs with a blood ring. All others except the blood rings go back in. I also wait for approx. 26-28 days until I remove any unhatched eggs. Late bloomers are ALWAYS hatching out and suprising me, every time.
For the Janoel 12:
I use this one for a small clutch I want to hatch, or any expensive or rare important eggs I want a good hatching success with, or any eggs which I cant tell which end is the pointy end- which happens a lot with my younger araucanas for some reason. Reason being is that in a stand up incubator, you have to put the pointy end down, and if it is not then you are essentially putting them in upside down and preventing the hatch. Again, I don't candle my eggs until day 18, so I don't look for air sacs, etc. In the Janoel 12, the eggs are laid on their sides and rolled around slowly and gently in the automatic turner, much more like they would be naturally under a hen. When you open the box, you will have two different white trays, one with stands and one with two raised bars running along the sides, no stands. Place the one with the stands to the side, this is the one you will put in the incubator later for hatching. For the first 18 days you will be using the one with the two raised lines on the sides. Put the egg tray inside of the raised lines, so it can slide back and forth. put two of the dividers inside of the egg tray, spaced evenly. This is so you can put 3 eggs inside each lane, for a total of 9 chicken eggs- it will not turn 12 chicken eggs properly because they are too close together to move and roll like they are supposed to, only put 9 in there. Do not try putting two on the outside and hand turning them, this will break them trust me. It is hard to tell if it is turning them or not, if you are new to this, and you have to make sure the metal rod that is sticking out of the round plastic circle is inserted inside the rectangular handle on the side of the egg tray EVERY TIME YOU PUT THE LID BACK ON or it will not turn the eggs. Mark your eggs with an X on one side, and an O on the other if you are concerned it is not turning them- then you will see that it actually is, so long as that metal rod is in the hole of the egg tray handle. If the turner is not working, or if it stops working, you will then have to turn them by hand 3 times a day yourself. The temperature is not always perfectly accurate, so I keep two medical grade mercury thermometers sitting on top of the eggs to keep an accurate temp- excessive, yes I know but the temp is the most important thing, humidity can fluctuate.
I don't set the low and high parameters on this incubator, never have. I've heard too many people losing chicks when they do this. I simply see what my medical thermometers say, and adjust the temp on the incubator up or down until the medical thermometers read right at 37.5 C or 99.5 F. Then I leave the machines temp adjustments alone, for the entire time. It adjusts and keeps it where I set it just fine. But, of course I have my thermometers inside the whole time, sitting on top of my eggs and check them any time I open the incubator to add water, etc. just to make sure the incubator is doing its job right. I also wrap a bath towel around the outside of the entire incubator- dont cover the top, just the sides. This helps the incubator keep temp accurate without burning out the motor from constant on and off. Dont ever cover the airhole in the top- the eggs need this little oxygen to help them incubate properly.
For humidity, I have a good hygrometer I put inside to check the humidity with. It is a small round one, and I tape it inside on the end where it wont interfere with the tray movement, so that I can see my humidity through the clear plastic without having to open the incubator every time. I keep the humidity between 40-55% the first 18 days. Then, for the last few days during hatching (lockdown) I put it at 65% by adding tiny bits more water. I don't go higher than 65, because when the eggs start cracking open the humidity goes higher and sometimes really high if they all want to hatch at once. One thing I've learned with this incubator is that the instructions to put 100 ML of water in there is wrong- I usually only need to add approx. 15 ML when I first start it up, then maybe 5 ML every few days to keep it between 40-55%. I suppose if it is winter time and the air is very dry, or if you live in a very dry arid climate it may actually need the 100 ML of water, but you have to use a hygrometer to check the humidity on the inside of your incubator and adjust accordingly, don't go by what the instructions say, go by what your thermometer and hygrometer sitting inside the incubator says and add tiny bits of water until it is right. I have a syringe that I put a piece of fish aquarium tubing on the end of, and I insert the tubing through the airhole until it hits the bottom of the tray, then gently inject a little water. Dont drip water all over you eggs, and don't ever use cold water. Always use warm, clean (filtered) water. At day 18, I quickly open the lid, gently take out the eggs and lay them on a towel, and quickly candle them in a dark room. If I see any blood rings, I throw them out. Blood rings are easy to recognize, it's exactly what it says, a red blood ring around the inside of the egg. This is bacteria involved, and these can explode inside the incubator due to being a dead egg and growing bacteria inside which the high temps are perfect breeding ground for bacteria. Throw these out. I take the tray with the two raised sides that the egg tray has been sitting in the last 18 days out of the incubator and put in the tray with the stands (peg legs on bottom). I add about 10 ML of water to the bottom of the incubator and I have a piece of rubber/foam shelf liner I have cut to fit inside the incubator, and clipped off 1/4 of it from the end, so the moisture on the bottom can still rise up and keep it humid inside without being blocked by the rubber pad. The pad is for the baby chicks after they hatch, to keep the other eggs from being rolled around too much by little chicks jumping all over them, and to keep baby chicks from getting splayed legs (deformed legs) from the slippery plastic floor, and for easy clean up when I'm done. I gently lay the eggs down on their sides, spaced evenly apart so they have room to roll around and hatch without bumping into each other, then I put the lid back on. I check to make sure the humidity is at 65% and add tiny bits of water through the airhole with my tube if I need to until it is at the right humidity for hatching. I never open the lid after this. At 19-22 days there is activity, you may hear peeping, you may see little holes, you may see rocking and rolling, cracked lines along the side of egg- you may see a chick come out and lay there like its dead for a long time- resist the urge to open, don't open it. The peeping from one chick encourages the other chicks to hatch out and join it- so don't remove it even if it's fluffy and adorable and staring at you with those cute little birdy eyes through the plastic- leave it with its little buddies. If you feel it is too crowded, and 3 or more are really rolling the unhatched ones around in there, take a few fluffy, fully dry energetic jumpers out quickly, put the lid back on in a hurry but leave one in there to peep and encourage the others to come out. another thing to note is that the humidity will rise a lot when eggs start hatching out, because of the moisture released during hatching, so don't stress about adding water and getting it up to say 75%, trust me it will rise a lot during hatching, you will see. I wait a full 28 days before I am done with a hatch. I've had chicks hatch at 26 days a lot. Maybe because they were kicked around a bit by the other chicks, I dont know but I always have one or two late ones, so be patient and don't count all your eggs before they've hatched.
Good luck! I hope this helps better understand the hatching process, the Janoel 12 incubator and how to use it, and maybe a few little tricks and things you can do to get a better hatch rate
No, the incubator is fully automatic. It turns the eggs very slowly. I *think* it's once every 6 hours, but not positive. Just make sure the stem of the turner is in the slot of the incubating tray. I have two of these running now and have been using them for a year. They work very well for me.