In the Brooder
Mar 16, 2018
I just discovered on day 13 that our humidity has been wrong for our incubating eggs.

Please help!! I need to know what can be done to help our chicks grow healthy air sacks.

Humidity was 75-90% for these two weeks. Now that it is empty of all water, humidity is down to 30%

What can I do to lower humidity even more?!

I want the chicks to continue growing and have a successful hatch.

We have 7 fertile eggs, some with saddled air sacks.

Thanks in advance!!
This kind of stuff happens and is very upsetting but try to understand that all you can do is look ahead, you cannot change the past. I know, easier said than done.

What can you do to lower humidity? Are all the plugs out? If not, take them out to increase ventilation. Your heater should easily be able to keep up.

Is it a forced air or a still (thermal) air? Installing a fan in a still air would help.

This one is a bit tricky but you might try cracking the lid very carefully. The heater needs to keep up. Be very careful and monitor temperature if you try this.

I'd look at delaying lockdown, but not by much. There are two purposes to lockdown. One is to stop turning them because they do not need to be turned. Stopping turning makes life a lot simpler. If you have a automatic turner go ahead and take it out when you should, don't leave it in.

The other purpose is to get the humidity up so you don't shrink wrap the chicks when they external pip. The reason we normally do this at 18 days is that it is it is not unusual for chicks to external pip a couple of days early and still hatch fine. If we lockdown at 18 days we are sure to catch these. But they can also be that much late. The critical thing is not to lockdown at 18 days but to lockdown before they external pip.

The way I'd approach this would be to regularly tap the incubator after 18 days. If a chick internal pips it will often chirp in response to a gentle tapping. If you hear a chirping bump the humidity up to 65%. If you see an external pip bump the humidity up. That is not an automatic death sentence, that happened to me on my first incubator hatch because the temperature was too warm. I went into lockdown when I saw that and the chick hatched fine. Raise the humidity when you go to bed that night in case a chick external pips when you are asleep.

The situation you are in is not great but do not give up hope. Those chicks can be really tough. Even if you don't do any of this you still have a chance to get some to hatch but I don't expect a great hatch. Don't overreact and go too far overboard, that is more likely to do more harm than good. It's probably best to use this as a learning experience when you try again. But give them time, you might get lucky.

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