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Little giant incubator

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Skye727, Feb 11, 2015.

  1. Skye727

    Skye727 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sandy, oregon
    K. I know I have posted about this before, but I need more help than what I am finding. I have a Little giant incubator that I have tried to use several times with no success whatsoever. I want to hatch some silkie eggs. How can I be successful? What temp? How do I keep the humidity up? Where is the best place to put the bator? Is this not a good bator? Just wish a silkie would go broody! Could my Serama hatch them? She's on eggs now.
     
  2. AmyLynn2374

    AmyLynn2374 Humidity Queen

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    I use a little giant (older model) with the fan kit and egg turner combined. My last hatch was about 81%, so I can't complain. First it needs to be in an area of your house that doesn't get drafts, the room temp doesn't significantly flunctuate and it is not in direct sunlight. Finding a good draft free,stable spot for the lg bators is a big plus in helping to keep them stable temp wise. Use more than one thermometer. (I use three all checked against each other.) Never trust the gages on the bators unless they have been checked for accuracy. You need a decent hygrometer as well.
    The temp depends on what kind of bator. If it is a still air you need 101-102F. If it is forced air, 99.5F
    Humidity...now there's a good question everyone differs on. I switched to dry incubation days 1-17. A lot of people with foam bators have better luck that way. I would suggest, setting up the bator a couple days early and run it w/no water. This allows you to stabilize and make sure your temp is going to stay fairly steady and see what your bator will run at humidity wise w/no water. If you maintain at least 25% humidity dry, I wouldn't add water in the beginning. I'd keep an eye on my hygrometer to make sure it stays at least at 25% and watch the air cells in the eggs to know wether that humidity is good. As long as it stays between 25%-50% and the air cells look good, I wouldn't worry about adding water until lockdown.
    When you candle your eggs, mark the air cells at days 7/14/18, they should roughly be about these sizes:
    [​IMG]
    If at day 7 or 14, they are too large, it means you are loosing to much moisture too fast, so your humidity needs to be highered. If they are too small, it means your egg isn't loosing enough and your humidity needs to go down.
    I rely on this to know if my humidity is right.

    At lockdown I shoot for 75% humidity at least. I don't usually have much trouble attaining that as our ambient humidity is usually pretty sufficient. I fill my water wells at lock down and add a couple wet sponges. Then if my humidity isn't up where I want it I quickly crack the top, pull out a sponge, wet it and slip it back in. So far it has worked well for me.

    As for broodies, any broody could hatch any egg.

    Good luck. I hope you master your bator. They are more work than your set and forget them type bators, but you can have successful hatches in them. Just have to monitor them more closely to make sure temps don't flunctuate too drastically. I'm assuming you have an automatic egg turner, or are you turning by hand.
    Oh...I also leave my plugs out and "vent holes" open for the hole hatch. Actually I don't even have the plugs. If I need to up humidty/temp I cover them with a quarter for a few minutes...lol
     
  3. Skye727

    Skye727 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 20, 2014
    Sandy, oregon
    Wow! Thanks So Much For All The info! I feel much more confident now. I think I can do this!
     
  4. AmyLynn2374

    AmyLynn2374 Humidity Queen

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    I think you can too! [​IMG]
     
  5. Joshua G

    Joshua G Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The cheapest incubator I've bought is the Little Giant from Tractor Supply co. however, when I bought it, it was a still-air incubator. But I converted it into a forced-air incubator by attaching an old 3" computer fan to a DC plug (A.K.A. an old battery charger cord) and after covering the front of the fan with plastic canvas (to prevent injuries) put it in the incubator and, voila!

    As with any incubator, don't set it in direct sunlight as that will raise the temperature and can be fatal to the embryos.


    This was my reply to someone else in another thread and I just copied it.
    Hope this helps!
     
  6. AmyLynn2374

    AmyLynn2374 Humidity Queen

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    Oct 11, 2014
    Gouverneur, NY
    Mine was originally still air as well, but the fan kit was bought and installed. (The fan kits cost as much as the bators...lol)
     

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