1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

Okay, so HOW exactly???

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by BigDaddy'sGurl, May 27, 2011.

  1. BigDaddy'sGurl

    BigDaddy'sGurl Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 14, 2010
    Wilkesboro NC
    I keep reading where people say that during hatching if your humidity is too high it will "drown" the chicks...

    Huh? Come again? Drown them???

    Let me explain my confusion: If you spend 18 days incubating eggs correctly with appropriate humidity and temp, the air cell will GROW. By the time of hatching, the air cell will be significant in size, thereby making internal pipping WITHOUT drowning possible. NO AMOUNT of "extra" humidity in the last 3 days of incubation will suddenly make the air cell fill up with water. Also, as a chick hatches, just because the air in the actual incubator is of high humidity, the chick does NOT "drown". Do you drown when the humidity outside is 100% right before a rainstorm? My chicks go into a brooder on my open-air back porch (DOES HAVE A ROOF) as soon as they come out of the incubator and they don't suddenly "drown" when it rains outside their brooder and raises the humidity in the air they breathe...

    If your humidity is "high" at hatch time, your chicks will still hatch just fine. They may not dry off as rapidly, but they will not DROWN.


    The only way I am aware of that your chicks could drown while hatching is if your humidity was high the entire incubation period, thereby making the air cell be too small to sustain the chick's first breaths at the internal pipping stage. Or, of course, if you incubate your eggs floating in a bowl of water. [​IMG]
     
  2. scbatz33

    scbatz33 No Vacancy, Belfry Full

    Jan 23, 2009
    South GA
    The humidity too high is in reference to the first 18 days. There are some people who have professed to incubate 1-18 at a 50% and higher range. In that case, the chick will risk drowning because the egg has not lost enough fluid. Therefore when the chick pips internally it gets a lung full of fluid instead of air.
     
  3. srsmith69

    srsmith69 Chillin' With My Peeps

    320
    5
    121
    Aug 25, 2009
    Oklahoma
    BigDaddy'sGurl :

    The only way I am aware of that your chicks could drown while hatching is if your humidity was high the entire incubation period, thereby making the air cell be too small to sustain the chick's first breaths at the internal pipping stage. Or, of course, if you incubate your eggs floating in a bowl of water. [​IMG]

    Agree with everything you say. I think the comment you are questioning is related to the entire incubation period. Not the lockdown period. Yes, you are right, the eggs will not take on water out of the air.​
     
  4. bkwurth

    bkwurth Chillin' With My Peeps

    140
    0
    99
    Jan 24, 2011
    Sorry to highjack your post. But I wanted to ask a question. Why does the humidity need to be raised during the hatch?
    Thanks,
    Kathy
     
  5. scbatz33

    scbatz33 No Vacancy, Belfry Full

    Jan 23, 2009
    South GA
    the humidity gets bumped to softened the membrane and shell so the chick can get out of the egg. With out the correct hatching humidity the chick will become tightly bound by the inner membrane or shrink wrapped and it will not be able to break free and it will die.
     
  6. Razadia

    Razadia The Odd One

    2,752
    253
    246
    Apr 7, 2011
    Montgomery, Alabama
    BigDaddy'sGurl :

    The only way I am aware of that your chicks could drown while hatching is if your humidity was high the entire incubation period, thereby making the air cell be too small to sustain the chick's first breaths at the internal pipping stage.

    I think this is what most people are talking about. Or at least, that's the way I think of it when I read a post about drowned chicks. [​IMG]
     
  7. mmaddie's mom

    mmaddie's mom Chillin' With My Peeps

    I'm confused by the different humidity %s people have during day 1-18... what is correct? I'm on day 2 and my humidty is 43%... ok? or do I need to change it?
     
  8. scbatz33

    scbatz33 No Vacancy, Belfry Full

    Jan 23, 2009
    South GA
    humidity varies based on your geographical location, time of year, model of incubator and in a lot of ways personal preference

    I do what works for me. I add absolutely NO WATER from day 1-18. My humidity ranges from 30% to 0 depending on time of year. Then on day 18 I bump it up to 70% or so.

    This is what works for me. I live in KY and hatch in an LG still air incubator.
     
  9. BigDaddy'sGurl

    BigDaddy'sGurl Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 14, 2010
    Wilkesboro NC
    Wow thanks for so many responses!!! Yes, originally I thought that people meant they could drown if the humidity is high the entire incubation...but if you read many comments on this particular part of the forum (incubating/hatching), you will find many people who claim that if your humidity is higher than 75% THE LAST 3 DAYS, your chicks will drown. Those responses are what I was referring to. I don't understand why people think their chicks can "drown" with only bumping up humidity those final three days... anyway, I myself prefer to "dry incubate" and then just get my humidity as high as I can at lockdown. I have had problems with chicks in the wrong position (I believe that is caused by too LITTLE humidity the entire incubation period prior to lockdown), and of course, temp. spikes and drops. But drowning? Nah. I've had humidity above 90% at hatch before with nary a problem.
     
  10. jvls1942

    jvls1942 Overrun With Chickens

    9,565
    462
    316
    Oct 16, 2008
    wausau,wisconsin
    I think all of you have the correct attitude.. I would never recommend telling a newbie to "dry incubate".. something like that is for a more advanced hatcher person..

    geographical location has no direct bearing on the humidity.
    It does have an indirect bearing as to how you regulate the humidity in the incubator..

    the incubator is a mini climate within itself.. Higher humidity in the room where the inubator is just indicates that you only have to adjust less to raise the humidity within the incubator..

    too low of humidity could produce a mummy.. that is a dried out embryo..
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by