Picking up Guinea eggs tomorrow for the incubator

JanO

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7 Years
Jul 25, 2012
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I ordered keets that are suppose to hatch in about a month, but found someone who has eggs at a really reasonable price too. So I talked to him today and he said he'd have 18 eggs for me today and I can pick then up in the morning. They are going in the incubator as soon as I can get them there. I have never hatched anything in an incubator before, so I'm really anxious to get them. I'm also collecting eggs from my flock of chickens to add to the incubator in a week or so, in hopes that they will hatch about the same time.
yippiechickie.gif
 

PeepsCA

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8 Years
Mar 28, 2011
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Congrats, and good luck!

Be sure to feed the keets high protein starter feed (Turkey/Pheasant/Game Bird starter), they need a lot more protein than chicks do.
 

JanO

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7 Years
Jul 25, 2012
325
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Western Washington
Thanks Peeps. High protein it is. I was able to pick them up tonight so they will be going in the incubator either later tonight or tomorrow morning. They are from a mixed flock including a few jumbos, so it'll be fun to see what I actually end up with. The fellow I got them from told me that if the hatch rate isn't good that he'll replace the eggs. I didn't have the heart to tell him that if the rate was not what he called good that it would probably be my fault since I've never incubated eggs before.
 

PeepsCA

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Mar 28, 2011
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Guinea eggs are pretty forgiving, and easy to incubate. Just try to keep your temp steady thru incubation, keep your humidity around 45-50%, be sure to turn them 3-5 times a day (or use an automatic egg turner), and then for lock down my keets seem to hatch much better with the humidity bumped up to around 70%-75%. The most difficult part is trying not to open the incubator during lock-down until the hatch is over... the keets and chicks, tho usually very active and noisy do fine being left in the incubator for up to 48 hrs after they hatch, they've just absorbed the last of the yolk. If you open the incubator to take out keets or chicks then you'll drop the humidity and temp for the unhatched eggs... and that can really mess up the hatch success.

Keep us updated as your hatch progresses!
 

JanO

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7 Years
Jul 25, 2012
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Western Washington
Peeps I have one quick question. (I'm probably going to drive you nuts during this adventure) Keets need higher humidity than chicks do at lockdown so should I be overly concerned about hatching them together? Also I'm having a heck of a time keeping my humidity in check. Dropped down to 20% sometime over night, and now it's up to 66% Seems like I can't find a happy medium where I want it to be. Temp is holding steady at 99/100 though.
 

PeepsCA

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Mar 28, 2011
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I've only hatched Silkie chicks, and I didn't hatch my chicks and keets together at the same time...so you'd have to ask someone who hatches your breed of chicks to find out if they can handle the higher humidity for lockdown. Maybe aim for the happy medium between the 2, but I wouldn't go any lower than 65% for the keets.

I don't mind the questions, but I'm pretty distracted lately with all the egg collecting, letting birds in and out (to free range) and getting my garden going... so I'm not on here as much as I used to be. (I try to check posts a couple times a day tho). Are you using a still air incubator, or an incubator with a fan? If you tell me which incubator you are using I may be able to fine-tune the tips I suggest. Low humidity typically won't hurt the eggs, as long as it's not below 20% for more than 24 hrs... but 66% is a little high (maybe it got bumped and some water splashed out of the troughs?). Hopefully it evens out and stabilizes for you. Are you hand turning the eggs?
 

JanO

Songster
7 Years
Jul 25, 2012
325
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Western Washington
JanO, is this the first time you've ever hatched anything? Just curious. Sounds like you might have hatched chickens before?
JLeigh this is the first time I've ever hatch anything. However I've been around poultry most of my life and could probably write a book about raising chicks of one sort or another. Although I'm not as well versed in Guinea.

My husband thinks I've lost my mind since I want to start hatching my own chicks from my hens eggs, and doesn't quite know what to think about adding guineas to the flock, but he's taking it all in stride.

I'm using a home made incubator that I made out of a Styrofoam ice chest that was given to me by our local grocer. The real sturdy kind that frozen meat shipments come in. So far it's holding the proper temperature and I think I've figured out how to keep the humidity in check. I'm hand turning the eggs every 6-8 hours. We shall see in a week when I candle the eggs how well we're really doing on this adventure.
 

R2elk

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Peeps I have one quick question. (I'm probably going to drive you nuts during this adventure) Keets need higher humidity than chicks do at lockdown so should I be overly concerned about hatching them together? Also I'm having a heck of a time keeping my humidity in check. Dropped down to 20% sometime over night, and now it's up to 66% Seems like I can't find a happy medium where I want it to be. Temp is holding steady at 99/100 though.
I hatched chicks and keets together at the same time and had no problem using the higher humidity with the chicken eggs. I did add the chicken eggs 7 days after the guinea eggs.
 

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