My first time ever incubating Quail eggs.

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Breezy Optimist, Mar 31, 2016.

  1. Breezy Optimist

    Breezy Optimist Out Of The Brooder

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    Hi :)

    I'm brand new to BYC, and brand new to Quails and egg hatching of any kind. So, hi to everyone here :)

    I'm from the UK.

    I'm actually doing things the hard way, on purpose.

    Over the years, we've had a few people appear in our local papers for having hatched Quails from eggs they bought at the local supermarket!
    And my neighbour, just happens to be one of them, and after hearing how he did it, i decided to give it a go.

    I'm aware it's a long shot, a very, very long shot. But how much fun would it be, to have a little Quail hatch, against all odds, that would otherwise have ended up on a dinner plate!

    I work from home, so i have the time to do all the manual turning, and temp/humidity checks and adjustments, so why the hell not. :D

    So, i've set up my incubator. Home made with a glass vivarium, heat lamp, water bowl and sponge, polystyrene for extra lining/insulation, temp and humidity gauges, towel for the eggs to sit on, all the basics.

    I ran my incubator for 5 days, and reached average temp of 98.5 - 99F. Humidity is at 52%.

    I'm aware that 'free range/free to fly' eggs are unlikely fertile, and then how long they have been stored before getting the supermarket, and how they were stored, temps etc and the odds are heavily stacked against me.

    But that's what makes this so much fun for me.

    My neighbour said it took him roughly 9 -10 months of taking a box of 12 eggs from the supermarket, incubating them, and getting nothing.

    Then on his last try, he had one little Quail hatch from the supermarket eggs. And it is the most adorable little bird i've seen!

    I'm in love with Quails! He's named it "Lucky" :D and i think that's very fitting. Lucky is now 2 months old, healthy and just adorable.

    So, i'm on day 3 :p

    I've turned the eggs at least 4 times a day. I turn in odd numbers each day so that when i go to bed i don't leave the eggs on the same side for a length of time each night.

    We've had a bit of a cold snap here, so the temp is hovering around 98.7F. But today it's warmed up a bit, and it's now on 99F.
    I also read somewhere (it might have been on here) to put a bowl of hot water in the incubator to help heat and humidity levels, and that seems to work really well for me. I refill every time i turn the eggs.

    So, most people will probably say i'm crazy for doing it all this way. But, I'm not desperate for a Quail to hatch. I know i may never get one to hatch. But i'm just enjoying the whole experience, and miracles do happen ;)

    Has anyone ever tried this and succeeded on here? Would love to hear from you if you have!

    And any advice from anyone regarding temps, or just general advice, as this is my very first time doing anything like this, would be great :)

    Or if you are just interested to see how this goes, i'll gladly keep posting with updates and you can all watch me fail haha!

    So, temps at 98-99F. Humidity at 52%. Turned eggs 4-5 times a day manually.

    Stop turning on day 13-14? It's hard to get a precise date, as so many people have posted different days, but this seems about average?

    Then raise humidity to around 65%?

    Check for pipping around day 18? And if still none by day 21, it's over (this time anyway).

    I've also heard that if a chick hatches at 21 days it's not likely to survive, is that right?

    Have i missed anything out here?

    Anyway, thanks for reading my REALLY long post, and i look forward to becoming a frequent visitor to this site :D

    I really am an Optimist ;)
     
    1 person likes this.
  2. Tabasco Jack

    Tabasco Jack Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Welcome to BYC!

    And this is quite an optimistic undertaking. I've never hatched with a still air incubator, which is what you have if you're using heat lamps as the heat source. It's my understanding that with still air incubators, it should be a degree or 2 warmer.

    Personally, I use a lower humidity level during incubation and then raise it to about 60% during lockdown.

    I don't see as your doing anything "wrong". It just might work.

    You could save a little time by candling the eggs around day 10. They're hard to see through, but with a bright enough light you can tell the difference between a yolk and a developing fetus.

    Good luck with it.
     
  3. Jesusfreak101

    Jesusfreak101 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am on day two of our quail eggs lol i am using a hen its her first round of eggs We see how well this goes!! I love that your ideal if mine doesnt go well and yours does i am going to try your method lol i dont have the extra cash for an incubator.
     
  4. JetCat

    JetCat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    you didn't say what kind of quail eggs, we'll assume Coturnix?? your humidity and temp will be fine, if you run low humidity quail eggs tend to dry out, i try to keep my quail eggs around 45% during incubation and i run my hatcher at 65ish. if they are Coturnix and being they are from a supermarket expecting a day 18 hatch would be fairly accurate, mine usually hatch early day 16 on fresh eggs and mid day 18 if they've sat for a while. stop turning on day 14 for Coturnix.
     
  5. Breezy Optimist

    Breezy Optimist Out Of The Brooder

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    Hi, thanks for the welcome :)

    And yes, it really is an optimistic undertaking :) I'm fully aware that this may never work, but i'm enjoying the process, and if i get lucky, then bonus. I wouldn't be trying it this way with purchased fertile eggs. I would feel like i'm setting them up to fail/death sentence, which wouldn't be fair. But with supermarket Quail eggs that were destined to end up on a dinner plate, i can live with that. Any life from them would be fantastic for me.

    And thanks for the advice about the humidity, i've lowered it to 35-40% now. This is all brand new to me, and i just love leaning and hearing other people's experiences.

    Even bigger thank you for the candling tip, i was actually confused about when to do that as there seems to be a lot of info around and all slightly different. So 10 days seems to be the most written tip i've come across so far.

    I actually just read yesterday about heating with a heat lamp and the temp being slightly higher, so last night i adjusted the temp, and it's now 100F. It fell to 99F during the frost this morning, but i put a bowl of hot water in there and it shot up to 103F, and is now sitting at 100F.

    A lot of fun, and who knows if anything will ever come of it, but hey, it's fun, i'm learning, and if i'm really really stupidly lucky, in a few years time haha! I'll have a little Miracle at the end of it.
     
  6. Breezy Optimist

    Breezy Optimist Out Of The Brooder

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    Hi :)

    Goodluck with your eggs :)

    Lucky of you to have a hen to sit on them, must save a lot of time for you.

    Oh, i doubt very much i would out do you with the egg hatching on this one lol. It's my very first time, in a homemade incubator with supermarket eggs....not very likely for me, but amazing if it is :)

    You will have to keep me updated on your eggs, and pics too. I would love to see how it's going. Especially with us being on a similar schedule, only two days apart!
     
  7. Breezy Optimist

    Breezy Optimist Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 31, 2016
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    Hi :)

    I'm using Quail eggs from Clarence Court? It doesn't say what type they are but they are tan coloured with brown blobs on them, i think they are Coturnix eggs? They look similar to the eggs of the japanese Quail too? So i'm not sure, and their website doesn't give details either.

    Thank you for the tip about humidity, i have just lowered mine as it seems 52% is too much.

    Thank you for the tips on the days and the turning day too.
     
  8. Jesusfreak101

    Jesusfreak101 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Lol i think it also saved the eggs from my three year old. So far we still doing well she has broken any of them.
     
  9. Breezy Optimist

    Breezy Optimist Out Of The Brooder

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    awww, well i guess it really is a bonus then if you have young children.

    How many eggs do you have?

    I have 24 lol. Someone bought me a second box of Quail eggs to wish me luck haha!
     
  10. JetCat

    JetCat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yes most likely they are Coturnix (which are Japanese quail).
     

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