buckaroo's wife

10 Years
Dec 10, 2009
North Central Texas
Call me crazy....I'm about to set my first eggs in the 'bator. I've never done this before! I've been reading and reading, but want to double check something. Am I correct in that after day 19, I should remove the eggs from my automatic egg turner and put them on lockdown and not mess with 'em? Do they just lay flat on their side (as they would in a nest)? I'm nervous!
I have heard that the pointed side of the egg should slightly be pointed down, helps the chicks get in the right position during the last three days so they can break the air pocket and hatch correctly.
Yes..u don't touch them anymore
Set your humidity

In my bator brisnea advance mini

I lay them on their side, I do though fill the both sides of the reservoir until I see a pip and then I don't open to add more water

Good luck..it will all work out

Just sit on your hands when u see them start to pip
Also use a flashlight when looking over your eggs that's much easier to see if they are beginning to pip
People can get real confused on counting days and determining when lockdown should be. I'd intuitively think day 1 is the day you put them in the incubator, but that is not correct.

An egg does not have 24 hours of development the instant you set it in the incubator. It needs to be in the incubator 24 hours before it has a day's worth of development. If you want to candle and compare them to the pictures, you need to think how many day sthey have developed. Don't candle them after 7 days of development and expect them to look like day 8 pictures. Lockdown should be after 18 days of development, not 17 days and 1 second. It sounds simple, but I have to look at a calendar to get it right. I point to the day after I set them and say one.

Let's say you start them on Sunday, February 27. 18 days will be up on St. Patrick's Day, Thursday March 17. They should hatch on Sunday, March 20. The day of the week you set them is the day they should hatch, Sunday in this example.

It does not always work out this way. Different things can cause them to be a little early or late. The main one is average incubating temperature. If your incubator is running a little warm they can hatch early, maybe more than two full days early. That happened to me. Or if your incubator is a little cool, they can be late. But if it is just right, it should be right at 21 days.

When you go into lockdown, take your turner out and lay them flat on the floor of the incubator. You should have a screen that came with the incubator to put onthe floor. This gives them good traction so they don't get straddle-legged. Don't obsess about getting them to point small end down or anything like that. They will be perfectly fine and will naturally assume the position they need. Some people cut the bottom out of cartons and put them in those pointy side down, which is fine. That works too. Both methods work.

Your incubator should have come with instructions on what to do. Mine just said fill one reservoir during incubation and fill an additional one during hatch. I'm not going to get into which humidity you need to use. Different ones of us have varying degrees of success with different humidities. I suggest for your first hatch, you try to follow the instructions that came with the incubator. If that works, fine. If it does not work, you can analyze your unhatched eggs and determine what you need to change next time.

Nothing wrong with being nervous, especially the first time. We've all been there. And it is always exciting. Good luck!
Wow! Thanks Ridgerunner!

That is all good info. Unfortunately, I don't have an instruction manual for my 'bator, and it was a castoff/gift from a friend....but luckily I was able to google and find the brand online.
How important is 1 day? Just curious because I may be off a day. Better to lockdown early or late?

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