New to this, have a few questions!


5 Years
Apr 9, 2014
This is my first time hatching and I'm on day 6 with my Ancona eggs I got from a lady I know. Started with 12 and unfortunately I'm down to 6 BUT they seem to be doing well. Two of the eggs were definitely infertile so I suppose I technically had 10 viable eggs. 1 made it to day 4 and by the end of the day had a large blood ring ): the others either died within the first couple do days or didn't even begin developing. Anyways my questions are this;

When determining my hatch rate I won't count the two infertile, right? Probably a silly question but I'm unsure.

Second, why in the world did I lose 4 babies early on? They weren't stored for anymore than 3 days and my still air incubator has kept a constant temp of about 100.8-101 it did shoot up once a few hours after setting them but I honestly don't think it was for enough time to change the egg temp. Also kept the humidity between 40-50% i am hand turning though so I open the incubator about three times a day.

Also, since i have to hand turn, what is an acceptable number of times to open the incubator each day without risking my babies?

And lastly, i need some tips on raising the humidity when it's lockdown time, I currently use a pan of water at the bottom and 4 soaked sponges along with 2 4oz saucers surrounding the eggs and all of that only keeps me between 40-50% has anyone tried setting a humidifier nearby? Or would just spraying inside my vent holes several times a day during lockdown be sufficient? Also, do I leave the vent holes open during lockdown? Unsure if it would let too much humidity out or if they were closed off the chicks would suffocate. I'm using a homemade incubator, how big should my vent holes be? Everything seems to be going smoothly with these last 6 eggs so I assume I'm doing okay for my first time. I've already made some adjustments that I think were needed.

All of these six have nice red veins and wiggle when I candle :)

But one more question! I know these guys are alive but a couple of them are hard to see when I candle, the veins are visible and growing but it seems like the embryo disappears, whereas a couple other ones are huge looking and I can make out there whole form. I'll see an occasional wiggle out of the others but they look like they disappear into the middle of the egg, is this normal or are they just smaller?
Not a whole lot should have developed by day 6. I didn't bother candling until day 7-10 and waited until then to toss any duds because I couldn't really tell if they were duds until then or not.

As far as hand turning - no clue.

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