Not my first time, but chewing nails already...

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Chickndaddy, May 18, 2011.

  1. Chickndaddy

    Chickndaddy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 26, 2007
    East Texas
    Okay. I haven't hatched any babies since like '04. So practically 7 years. I have successfully hatched chickens (large fowl and bantam), ducks, geese, turkeys, guineas, quail, and pheasants in my incubators. Usually I used a Sportsman with an automatic turner and moved them to a hatcher on the last three days. I have used Little Giants though with moderate success.

    A friend contacted me after someone won an auction for 12+ Bourbon Red Turkey hatching eggs and asked me to try setting them. I have shipped eggs so I know this can be a total toss up as far as my success rate but at least it isn't so hot the bird's fertility should be affected yet.

    The only incubator I have at my disposal right now is sadly a Little Giant incubator (Model # 9200). I have an automatic turner but not with me. It's in storage. I'd really rather turn them by hand but if the general consensus is the turner is the way to go then I'll go fetch it.

    I'm bleaching the ba-jeezus out of the bottom tray right now and was wondering:

    What are the thoughts on putting a cling wrap along the bottom of the bator to make clean-up easier at the end?

    I'll be firing it up later tonight. I have two standard thermometers and a Brinsea Spot Check with a probe I leave in there all the time. I know I want the temperature between 99.5-100 degrees Fahrenheit. Humidity between 55-60%, although I don't have a hygrometer. I'll pick one up tomorrow after work.

    I remember several of my hatches in the past were poor in this incubator though. It was in the laundry room with fairly consistent temps. The eggs would develop and be completely formed but they would pip and never zip or not pip at all. Checking the eggs showed fully developed chicks who hadn't absorbed their yolk sacs. What is the general thought on that?

    I'm not expecting a 100% hatch or anything but don't want to complete disappoint this lady. So I know I don't have the best bator but if anyone has any advice on this model (other than chunking it in the trash) or helpful tips I would appreciate it.

    What are the thoughts on dry incubation? And what views on incubating have changed since my last lock down? I feel like I've been out of the loop for too long.

    By the way I have her settling the eggs tonight before she brings them to me and I'll probably let them sit the day with me and set them in the evening. Night hatches are better because I sleep through all the nerves...lol
     
  2. Chickndaddy

    Chickndaddy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 26, 2007
    East Texas
    Hoping this just got buried...
     
  3. Chickndaddy

    Chickndaddy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 26, 2007
    East Texas
    Just checked all three thermometers. This morning the two bulb thermometers (about an inch off the wire) read 104-ish. There is about a half degree difference between the two while the Brinsea (sitting on the wire or just nearly) read 98 or so. Now the two read 108-ish while the digital reads 100.4

    I don't have any eggs in there or water. Trying to get it to run steady first. She hasn't even brought me the eggs yet. Which thermometer should I be trusting?
     
  4. jdopler

    jdopler Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 14, 2010
    Roggen, Colorado
    great question, I have a digital and a regular therm in mine also both read about 2 degrees different.. which to trust or try to get them on opposite ends of 99.5?
     
  5. Chickndaddy

    Chickndaddy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 26, 2007
    East Texas
    Regular thermometers are holding nearly steady and the digital is now reading 100.9.

    So confused... [​IMG]
     
  6. Chickndaddy

    Chickndaddy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 26, 2007
    East Texas
    Thinking I mis-read it in the dark. It is at 100.4 again. So we seem to be holding steady which is good. Thinking about filling up the water reservoirs and marking/setting the eggs a little later.

    Does anyone have any thoughts on putting cling wrap on the bottom tray under the hardware cloth to minimize nastiness on the Styrofoam?

    Or which thermometers I should be trusting? I'm thinking the symptoms I described in the first post are probably because the temp was too cool. So hopefully following the digital one will give me better results.

    Also thoughts on the turner? I can turn them by hand or get the turner this weekend and put them in it then. Was reading where several users don't turn shipped eggs for the first few days. Is that a good rule of thumb?
     
  7. Chickndaddy

    Chickndaddy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 26, 2007
    East Texas
    Well I'll be updating this thread like a live journal for the next 28-ish days with the conditions of the incubator for any that might be following this endeavor.

    Would still appreciate any input on the questions posted earlier...
     

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