Lowest temperature for hatching eggs being shipped?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by McSpin, Feb 25, 2008.

  1. McSpin

    McSpin Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I see lots of hatching eggs being shipped from various sites, but I never see any recommendations on who shouldn't order due to cold. I know that priority mail commonly takes up to 3 days and even more on occasion. It would seem impossible to keep the egg temp much above 35-40 degrees when taking this long to ship to a cold northern state (I'm in a cold part of NY). Does anyone know how low egg temp can go before they will not hatch?

    It seems that it might be very important to make sure the shipper is within one day priority mail shipping unless outside temps are above a particular point. I'd like to get an early start on some new stock, but there's no sense in getting in eggs that have little chance.

    I see some sellers saying they don't start shipping until April. Might this be the time frame when it's safe vs when they'll have eggs available?
     
  2. jimnjay

    jimnjay Chillin' With My Peeps

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    While eggs being shipped, do take up to 3 days to arrive, they are still inside a building, plane or truck during that time. When shipping to northern states the buyer should make sure to pick up the eggs from the post office rather than allow them to be delivered and chance being left outside. When I ship my egg, they are well insulated by bubble wrap and double boxed with crumpled or shreaded paper and that provides additional insulation.

    Most people who live in a frigid climate know when it is safe to ship eggs to their location. I am shipping to New Jersey today. Both the buyer and I are watching the temp for a window that will allow for safe shipment. With shipped eggs there is no guarantee ever but many I know have hatched eggs right of the refrigerator. We know they will not hatch if they have been frozen but all the guidelines about the proper temperature to store eggs are for optimum results. Eggs are amazingly adaptable in acutality.
     
  3. McSpin

    McSpin Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Yes, but from what I've been told, the trucks and planes are unheated where the packages are held. I would guess that most of the time they are not in a heated building. I thought some experienced shippers might know what temperature tends to cause greater problems. Maybe, they 'd don't get enough feedback to really know the answer to this.
     
  4. Katy

    Katy Flock Mistress

    Better too cool than too hot.
     
  5. McSpin

    McSpin Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:I would guess by definition, too cool, would mean too cool to hatch, making "too cool" or "too hot" equally bad. Not hatching is not hatching. I'm guessing there is a temperature where none hatch (at either end of the temperature extremes) and a ever increasing hatch rate as you move towards the ideal range.

    Maybe I'll do some experimenting with my own hens and see if can figure it out. I'll pick up one of those infra-red thermometers to try and get egg temps when I collect them. Right now, it's so cold here, that eggs will freeze solid if I don't collect them soon enough. Of course, by the time I know anything, it'll be plenty warm for normal shipping.
     
  6. Hi!
    We have a member in AK (Leslie, I think). She has received eggs for hatching all thru the winter (I sent some one year to hatch right around Christmas).
    Maybe she could tell you more.
    There was a box of eggs I sent to *somewhere up North* and instead of the PO 'holding and calling' --- the box was left at the mailbox for hours in 10 degree temps. If I recall, those eggs hatched well.
    Hope that helps [​IMG]
    Lisa
     
  7. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    Too cool is better than too hot but it isn't the absolute temperature that matters, but the duration at various temperatures which will effect hatch ability. I gotta go see if I can find that book...

    Ok, for more than you ever wanted to know about tempreature and eggs, and so on...

    Find the book "The Avian Embryo" -Structural and Functional devlopment by Alexis L Romanoff, The macmillian company, newyork.

    One of the tables in it on page 198 has temperature, period of exposure, and effect of embryonic development... they say at -18 degC for .5 hours, embryos were not killed, however did not hatch well.

    According to the table, having eggs at -1.1C for 4 nights, did not affect hatchability.

    http://www.amazon.com/Biochemistry-Avian-Embryo-Alexis-Romanoff/dp/0470732288
     
  8. Leslie In North Pole

    Leslie In North Pole Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Here I am, the lady who tested how cold is too cold.

    Last winter I received eggs from several people all through the winter and I even sent out 18 eggs in trade to someone when it was -40 here. He successfully hatched 15 chicks if I recall, which is outstanding. (Heck, I didn't get that kind of hatch with my eggs here.)

    I received eggs when it was -30 and colder and I had several great hatches. From when I worked at the postal service, I learned that you should always write if a box needs to avoid freezing temps on the box, there are people who do read and it is the only way to give them a chance to make sure your box isn't left out in the extremes. I also have everyone write "HOLD AT POST OFFICE" "CALL xxx-xxxx for IMMEDIATE PICKUP", so far I have never received frozen eggs. I have received calls in the middle of the night... on Sundays.... and even holidays to come get my eggs but that also only happens if the box says hatching eggs on it.

    The biggest factor in shipping eggs is how well they are packaged and how they are treated en route. Remember, most people use bubble wrap and the like to insulate the eggs for shipping which also helps insulate the eggs from quick temp extremes. If you are really concerned, you can always have the eggs shipped in a small styro cooler in extreme temps. Many people have found that the postal service is more likely to treat them carefully.

    Edited to add: It doesn't hurt to let your carrier and post office know that you are having eggs shipped in. If you talk to the right person, they will let recieving know when to keep an eye out for you, so they can pull your eggs off to the side.
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2008
  9. McSpin

    McSpin Chillin' With My Peeps

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    duplicate
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2008
  10. McSpin

    McSpin Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Those last few posts were very helpful. It appears they can handle it near freezing for a few days. I'm sure if I pick a warm spell for shipping, they should have a fairly good chance, which is all I'm hoping for. Thanks for the input.

    Oh, silkiechicken, I'll pass on the $125 to find out exact temps they can handle. At that price I can afford to lose a few batches. [​IMG]
     

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