New to incubating

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Mr Grinch, Jul 7, 2016.

  1. Mr Grinch

    Mr Grinch New Egg

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    Jul 6, 2016
    Hi all,

    Trying my second lot of incubating after a very bad first one where only 2 out of 12 hatched.
    I set my incubator to 37.7c and added a little water as instructed. It's an automatic turner but I had no humidity gauge. Two hatched and they were 2 and 3 days late. This would lead me to believe the temp was not right and maybe too low.
    So I bought two humidity/thermometer gauges and placed them inside where the unhatched eggs were and to my horror they read about around 35.7c. A massive difference to to incubator reading.

    Im now on my second batch. I set it up 24 h before to try and get it precise. A lot of tinkering and finally I got the two gauges inside to read 37.5 and 37.7 but that was after setting the bator to 40.3c. I tried the set up without water at first but that showed humidity at 10% so added water and that's bought it up to 60% so hopefully all the figures are spot on.

    Can I ask are such temp variations common place in bators ?

    G
     
  2. Yorkshire Coop

    Yorkshire Coop Moderator Staff Member

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    Sorry to hear you had such a poor hatch the first time round :( As you have found out its paramount to always double the temps with a known to be correct thermometer. What kind of incubator are you using? I'm afraid some say factory set but this not often the case. My first ever incubator was exactly like this and was way off in temp. 60% humidity is high for the first stages of incubation, I would try to get this down to about 35% if you can for the first 7 days and when you candle you can see if you need to put it up a tad or lower it. If the humidity is too high during incubation the eggs will not lose enough moisture and the air cell will not grow adequately enough for the chick to pip into safely.

    Please do check out this article ~ https://www.backyardchickens.com/a/hatching-eggs-101
    It's an absolute bible on incubating and hatching :D

    Good luck :fl
     
  3. SunHwaKwon

    SunHwaKwon Overrun With Chickens

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    Yes, they are. Luckily, my incubator lets me calibrate its thermostat, which is a nice feature!
     
  4. Mr Grinch

    Mr Grinch New Egg

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    Jul 6, 2016
    Thank you very much for the reply. Ive been reading a lot over the last few months, but many sites and advice books say different things so sometimes its hard to gauge what is correct.


    I think i have the temperature sorted out now. I have now read that there can be fast differences in these bators. The humidity is the issue. I ran it dry and humidity was only at 10% which is too low, so added a little water and that bumped it up to around 62%. Many articles i have read say a starting level should be around 50-60% then increase to around 75% at lock down but you say around 35% is best and a mate of mine who used to hatch successfully added no water at all for the first 18 days and had great success.

    How would i now get that humidity down without disturbing the incubation ? Let it run down naturally ?


    Its a science this which i wasnt expecting.

    My thermostat in the bator reads 37.5c but the "instructions" for the bator says it should be 38c yet others say the optimum is 37.7c. Would these variations make a difference ?

    thanks in advance.
     
  5. Yorkshire Coop

    Yorkshire Coop Moderator Staff Member

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    I can only say what suits me and what has produced me good hatches. My incubator has a fan so I incubate at 99.5F which is 37.5C. Humidity is a varying factor which is different for everyone. No two homes or environments are the same so what works for me may not work for you. I go on day 7 candling results and adjust my humidity level accordingly. If it's a hassle to take some water out of the incubator just leave it as it is and see what the air cells are like on day 7.
     
  6. Mr Grinch

    Mr Grinch New Egg

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    Jul 6, 2016
    Yes mine is a fan bator aswell so hopefully the temp its on will be ok. To take water out I would need to take the whole lot out which will disturb the eggs and ambient temp so will not put any water in for a while a monitor it.
     
  7. Mr Grinch

    Mr Grinch New Egg

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    Jul 6, 2016
    I have noticed today the humidity has dropped 3% but the temp has risen 0.2c so now showing 37.7c

    Is this normal ?
     
  8. Mr Grinch

    Mr Grinch New Egg

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    Jul 6, 2016
    Again last hour humidity dropped 2% to the levels I'm looking for but temp risen to 37.8c

    I've reduced the bator temp by 0.2c and that's bought it down to 37.6c. Surely you don't have to do this everyday ?
     
  9. Yorkshire Coop

    Yorkshire Coop Moderator Staff Member

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    As the surface area of water decreases in the incubator the humidity will drop.
    Some temp variations can occur so I would leave it as it is to see what it settles at. Often altering the temp control can cause fluctuations untill it has settled.

    What kind of incubator are using? I maybe able to find you tips and tricks for that particular brand.
     
  10. Mr Grinch

    Mr Grinch New Egg

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    Jul 6, 2016
    It's one of these cheap Chinese ones janoel12 I think.
     

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