Ok , It's lockdown time...what do I do?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by wistlindixie, Apr 22, 2012.

  1. wistlindixie

    wistlindixie Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 27, 2011
    This evening should be lockdown for me (set on Good Friday). What is your preferred method of lockdown prep? I need some good advice.
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    If you are hatching chickens and you set on Friday, April 6 you are not ready for lockdown unless you know something you are not telling us. Maybe you are not hatching chickens?

    Many people get confused on how to count the days. Logic says that Day 1 should be the day you put them on the incubator, but that is not right. An egg does not have a day's worth of development 2 seconds or 2 hours after it is put in the incubator. It takes 24 hours for the egg to have a day's worth of development. If you set them on Friday, April 6, you had a day's worth of development Saturday April 7. Lockdown should be after 18 days of development. That means lockdown should be on Tuesday, April 24. Hatch should be on Friday, April 27.

    One good way to remember when they should hatch is that it should be on the same day of the week you set them. In your case, a Friday.

    In theory, they should hatch after 21 days of development, but there are a lot of things that can affect the exact hatch time. Heredity, humidty, how and how long you stored them before starting incubation, even the size of the egg can have and effect. But the big factor is average incubating temperature. If your average incubating temperature is a little warm, they can hatch several days early. I've had some pipping when I went into lockdown beause of a warm incubator. Some people have them hatch that much late. It really does vary a lot.

    The exact timing on lockdown is not that important. As long as you start lockdown before they pip, you should be OK. I had a pretty good hatch that time they started pipping before lockdown. If you have a history with your incubator and you know they will be a couple of days early, you might want to lockdown early. But if you don't have any history to go by, I suggest you wait until the 24th to start lockdown, then adjust next time if you need to.

    My lockdown prep is to take out my automatic turner and lay the eggs on their side on the bottom of the incubator. I add water to enough reservoirs to raise the humidity to somewhere around 65% to 75% and put the lid back on. I usually candle to get rid if any that have not developed, but not always. Other people will do it a little differently. They may hatch in cartons instead of just laying the eggs on the bottom of the incubator, for example. There are lots of different things we may do, but the normal things involve stopping turning and raising humidity.
  3. wistlindixie

    wistlindixie Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 27, 2011
    I did have my days wrong. I have some that I set on that Thursday and some bantams I set on Good Friday. I was going to lockdown tomorrow night but maybe should wait until Tuesday?
  4. adrian

    adrian Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 12, 2009
    Regina, SK
    Hey Ridgerunner, this is a little OT, but you say day 1 of development is technically 24 hours after being set. This makes sense to me and always has but I heard once if you set early in the morning, you should count that day as day 1, so that is what I've been doing with one of my most recent clutches. Is that wrong? Set on April 5th at 3AM, goose eggs, so 30 day incubation period. Was assuming May 4th was hatch date. Is May 5th instead? With my other eggs (ducks, chickens, and other geese), I set in the afternoon so assumed the next day was day 1, which seems to be what's right.

    So regardless of what time you set, you would call the next day "day one" of incubation, would you? Seems logical to me, but I suppose because I heard otherwise somewhere about setting early in the morning, I thought differently about these eggs.
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2012
  5. nurse_turtle

    nurse_turtle Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 28, 2011
    Foothills of NC
    No matter what time of day, the day you set your eggs in the incubator is day #0.

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