Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by jazzchicken, Nov 17, 2007.

  1. jazzchicken

    jazzchicken Songster

    Nov 17, 2007
    Hey everyone. I am new to incubating, and I ordered 6 silkie hatching eggs, but I'm not sure what to do as of turning the eggs and controlling the humidity
  2. tiffanyh

    tiffanyh Songster

    Apr 8, 2007
    Take a peak at all the posts on it, there are probably hundreds! [​IMG]

    The search method is good here, just narrow it down to just teh incubation boards and Im sure youll get all your questions answered.

    Good luck.
  3. hatchcrazzzy

    hatchcrazzzy Songster

    Jun 8, 2007
    kemp texas
    Choosing the right eggs.

    First, you should consider the chickens responsible for fertilizing and laying the eggs. The eggs should come from healthy adult chickens who have a high fertility percentage, were not disturbed during mating season, were fed a good diet, and are not related to each other.

    Examine the eggs. They should also be of a regular shape and average size, not larger or smaller than a typical egg produced by your chickens. Their shells should display no holes or cracks because such damage could encourage disease organisms to penetrate the egg. With this same concern in mind, you should not wash or wipe the egg, as you could remove the egg's natural protective coating that guards against such organisms.
    The eggs should also be cared for correctly before incubation. This will help ensure a productive hatch. To care for the eggs
    Store eggs in a cool, humid area, ideally 55'F with 75% humidity.

    Store eggs with the large end up.
    Turn eggs daily, use an X and O marking system to keep track.
    Eggs can be stored for up to seven days.
    Allow cool eggs to warm up to the ambient temperature where the incubator is located before putting them into the incubator.

    Selecting an incubator. Chickens can either be hatched by using a setting hen or an incubator. There are two types of incubators: forced-air and still-air.
    Force-air incubators are large, have a fan, hatch a larger number of eggs and require little attention.

    Still-air incubators are small and have no fan, hatch a smaller number of eggs and require more attention.
    Setting hens require little attention, do all the work themselves and are essentially an incubator and brooder. However, setting can take its toll on a hen. Make sure she stretches and eats occasionally.

    Maintaining the proper incubator conditions.

    Temperature should be 100'F for forced-air incubators and 102'F for still-air incubators. Check the temperature by placing the hatching thermometer at the same height as the top of the eggs would be. The heat source should be adjusted if needed.

    Humidity should be 58-60% from day one to day 18 and should be increased to 65% from day 18 to day 21. This is important to prevent moisture loss in eggs.
    Air vents should be opened slowly as chicks begin hatching for proper ventilation.
    Eggs should ideally be turned four to six times daily, but two or three times daily will suffice. Turning an odd number of times per day is best. Turn the eggs until day 18, and then do not turn any more -- turning after day 18 could injure the chick.
    Forced-air incubators have automatic turners.
    Eggs in still-air incubators must be turned by hand. Use the X and O marking technique to help keep the turning correct.
    Always make sure hands are clean before handling eggs or chicks.
  4. arlee453

    arlee453 Songster

    Aug 13, 2007
    near Charlotte NC
    biggest tip I can pass along is to make sure your incubator is setup and stable with temps and humidity for a day or two before you set the eggs in there.

    It took a week of working with my (homemade) incubator to get the temps steady.
  5. Sharisr32

    Sharisr32 Egg Killer ;)

    Jan 14, 2007
    OH/PA Boarder
    This is just from trial and error but in no incubator should have temps ever above 100 --- unless your looking for baked chicks ------
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2007
  6. jazzchicken

    jazzchicken Songster

    Nov 17, 2007
    thanks everyone

    I just got my new silkie hatching eggs today and they have been put in the bator. I can't wait for them to hatch:D

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: