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Lockdown temperature??? I'm a little confused..have I covered all my bases?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Bazy, Jul 24, 2014.

  1. Bazy

    Bazy Songster

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    I have never done this before...and I'm stressing out a little! Lockdown is Saturday. I started with 24 Ameraucana hatching eggs and learned to candle them. Culled 8 of them for various times an various reasons..couple of yolkers, and quitters, almost all culled were porous eggs that didn't make it. One I just didn't want to give up on but the smell of it finally made me sure!

    My sons pretend not to care, but called me frantic one day when the power went out and they could not get the generator started, so borrowed an invertor from the neighbor and sat with the incubator In the car until the power came back on, and argue who the chicks are going to see first and call 'mama'!

    I have a big Rubbermaid tub for my brooder, light, chick starter food and the green mash that Jeffers sells for the first day. I have my Marek's vaccine ready. I need to find a water dish with marbles...and my husband is raising his eyebrows at just how much these pretty blue eggs are costing us, and how long he will have to wait for an omlette!

    I have filled the Little Giant incubator channels with paper towels, and fed a straw down to one towel over it all, under the wire mesh so I can add water without opening to raise humidity to 65-75% (??right??)..threatened my sons with murder charges if they open the incubator for any reason while the chicks are (hopefully) hatching and candled all the eggs at day 16 to be sure they look like the pictures on the internet.

    One thing I am not clear on is the temperature during lockdown. I have read not to touch anything, and also to decrease the temperature to 95 degrees. Which is correct?? I am so nervous, and I don't want to mess this up now! We have hand turned these eggs, if that is any factor, being careful to wash our hands etc...

    I am making a trip to the feed store tomorrow for a fresh bale of pine shavings so I don't accidentally carry some organism from the bale I use with my four 7 week old chicks to the babies..

    Help with the temperature during lockdown! I'm SOOO nervous!
     

  2. Puddin Fluff

    Puddin Fluff Crowing

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    Take a deep breath and remember: Mama chick has never read a hatching guide. We often overthink. There is hatching for fun and there is obsession. Even mama chick doesn't get 100% all the time. I can't tell you what the experts say on leaving the temp or reducing but I think at hatch, you will be fine either way. Good luck, don't stress, enjoy! Hopefully some expert will come along with a better answer for you. [​IMG]
     
    3 people like this.
  3. Some people drop the temp a little on hatch others do not... I personally do not as my incubator has eggs hatching every week or sometimes every few days, nor do I even do a lock down due to my staggered hatches...

    I aim for 60-70% humidity when hatching, if there is a hatch that is not well or needs assisting I will bump that humidity up to about 80-90% but many just wrap the egg in a moist paper towel to localize humidity for the ones struggling...

    As said above remember chickens don't follow a set of rules, and they have little to no control over ambient humidity, and they sure as heck don't do a lock down ;) We only do the lock down as an easy way to keep the humidity up, it's honestly not necessary if you have a way to maintain the higher humidity...

    And right now just sit back and enjoy, they will either hatch or they will not, as it's not a perfect world even if you do everything by the book...
     
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2014
    1 person likes this.
  4. Bazy

    Bazy Songster

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    Thank you so much for the reassurance! You make perfect sense. There is no rule book for the hen! If there are not any opinions, Maybe I'll just reduce to about 99, and go with my gut feeling. I'm thinking that if 102 still air is comfortable for them, then the exertion will raise their body heat a little so a couple of degrees down won't hurt anything?
     
  5. Iko127

    Iko127 Chirping

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    Its so nice to hear this! I'm starting my first hatch and unfortunately had 14 eggs ready the 24th and 12 eggs that I will add tomorrow morning do to shipping delay. You are the first person that I'm reading that dose a staggered hatch. [​IMG] Any input is great to hear! I have a still air so my temp is staying rt at 100 maybe a couple hrs during the day 102...humidity is 40 to 50%.
     
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2014
  6. Knowing I was going to do a staggered hatch I picked up a mini USB humidifier (ultrasonic) on Ebay for about $10 delivered, I already had a micro USB phone charger so I use that to power it... If you don't have a micro USB charger you can get an adapter for about a dollar on Ebay... During hatch times I'm able to bump the humidity right back up after I open the humidifier, I just turn on the mister, close the lid and when humidity gets back to about 60% I unplug it until next time...

    Just EXAMPLES, I'm not recommending these sellers at all, just pointing towards the products...

    This is the model I'm using right now... http://www.ebay.com/itm/New-Cool-Wa...t=LH_DefaultDomain_0&var=&hash=item2a3eb48497

    Nice option as you can just drop it in a bowl, I'm probably going to try one of these out.... http://www.ebay.com/itm/MINI-DONUT-...337?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item4184391b79

    And an adapter example... http://www.ebay.com/itm/White-USB-W...753?pt=Batteries_Chargers&hash=item3ce4fb6661
     
  7. Bazy

    Bazy Songster

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    That is very clever in my opinion. My son asked tonight why couldn't you just put an automatic humidifier in there that would 'squirt' humidity when it needed it? I have to show him this!

    It's official! (Lacking clever humidifiers, etc...we are doing it the old fashioned way) We are in LOCKDOWN! I can not wait to see what happens next!
     
    1 person likes this.

  8. Iko127

    Iko127 Chirping

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    Thank you so much. I do think I need to get my humidity up a little.. its been staying around 40 to 50. I will work on that today. Still learning my bator. Only working on day two for the first batch.
     
  9. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

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    You get so much different advice on here that it can be really confusing. One reason you get so much different advice is that different things work. There is no set one way to the only right way to do it. There are usually many different right ways. Most of these things have acceptable ranges, not one absolute perfect value, like temperature or humidity.

    We also have different circumstances or conditions. Your still air incubator is different than a forced air. Each individual egg is unique with the “perfect” conditions for one to hatch different for another egg. There are a lot of different things that go into that, heredity, porosity or thickness of the egg white, how or how long they were stored, just many things. The good news is that there are ranges that work. You don’t have to be exactly precise.

    At the stage yours are at, temperature is not hugely critical. You still want it to be in the right range but the chicks are generating a lot of heat inside that egg. They can handle slightly lower temperatures. The problem commercial hatcheries that use incubators or hatchers that can handle 60,000 eggs at one time is keeping the temperature form getting too high. They have to get that excess heat out or the eggs will cook themselves. I doubt you are hatching 60,000 eggs so that’s probably not a big concern of yours but that might be where that recommendation to lower the temperature comes from. These things can get pretty distorted.

    Where you take the temperature in a still air is important. Hot air rises so the lower you go the lower the temperature. If you take the eggs out of a turner and lay them flat on the floor, the elevation may drop enough to have an effect on the temperature. Since they generate some heat on their own and just hatched chicks can handle as low as 90 to 95 degrees just fine, that’s not a huge problem unless you drop the elevation a whole lot. I seriously doubt you dropped elevation enough for that to be a problem.

    From what I read in your posts, I think you are doing things really well. I would work in getting the humidity up some but you have until they pip to get that right. Until they pip that's not a huge problem. Try not to obsess about it and enjoy the experience, but I understand the first time especially can be pretty intense. Good luck with the hatch.
     
  10. Iko127

    Iko127 Chirping

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    Thank you!! I need some reality [​IMG]
     

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