Question about hatching

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Billyj, Jan 23, 2010.

  1. Billyj

    Billyj Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 20, 2010
    Gaffney SC
    I have tried on several occasions to incubate and hatch eggs. I am very new to this. I have an forced air incubator, automatic thermometer, hydrometer, and automatic egg turner. The temperature was set on 99 degrees so it went from about 96 when air not blowing to around 101 when the air was blowing. I have collected my eggs, set them with the air sac up, once let them sit out of the bator to acclimate to inside temperature, or sometimes put them straight into the bator once collected. Each and every time, IT NEVER WORKED. I candeled them on days 8, 10, and 11. Nothing there. I know they were fertilized because after day 15, and seeing nothing, I cracked them open and saw the "bullseye". I don't know what to do. I have had some porous eggs and still tried. I kinda know those would not work but I still tried. What am I doing wrong?? If it was because the eggs were porous, what can I do to fix that? I am not trying to have a million chickens or anything, but I want to have a few "from scratch". (sorry) . My hen will not sit and I am about to sit on the eggs myself.

    Second question - I have seen people say stuff about lockdown. From what I understand, that is the last few days correct?? Like days 18-21. Is that what I am doing wrong?

    Please help. Any advice or suggestions would be helpful.
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2010
  2. Ban seabhag

    Ban seabhag Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 28, 2009
    Glenn HWY Alaska
    Not sure. I am not very experienced at this myself and tried a couple of times before I had success. One thing, you might want to cross check your thermometer to be sure its on. I don't think you want it to get down to 98 either, but it may just be in certain spots in the incubator. 99.5 is the low temp for me, to 101.5 max. That should mainly effect the time of hatch though, not whether the eggs start or not, (I think). Did you have them shipped? That can really make a difference in egg quality.
    If your eggs are not developing then lockdown is immaterial. The 18th day is the start of lockdown. What percent humidity are you using to start your eggs?
    Can't fix porous eggs unfortunately.
  3. Billyj

    Billyj Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 20, 2010
    Gaffney SC
    No these are my own eggs from my hens. I start the humidity around 35-40%.

    I wonder if the 98degrees is the problem.
  4. lemurchaser

    lemurchaser Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 11, 2008
    Corvallis, OR
    From your own chickens, you should have better luck than that. I would check your thermometer for sure. Also be sure you're checking temps in all corners of the incubator. Mine can have a huge variation and that could make a huge difference.

    Do you know the rooster is fertile? I wonder if maybe he has something wrong with him and the chicks aren't developing. Even with temps off and humidity off, I'd expect you to get SOME development, even if you never had chicks hatch.

    Can you trade roos with someone and see if that helps?
  5. Boggy Bottom Bantams

    Boggy Bottom Bantams Overrun With Chickens

    Mar 9, 2008
    Hahira, GA
    your temp it fine. I have done this for nearly 3 decades. If using hovabators, their temp cycle often runs from 96-102 or so. You want your average temp or your cycle to be 99.5 the egg temp will not fluctuate like the air temp does, so just be sure to watch a few cycles of the thermostat and get the average right. Also as mentioned, check your thermometers for accuracy.
    I never run my humidity that low either 55% or so is best for me, any lower and everything is stuck to the shell.
    I would crack one open before setting to look for the bullseye too, after 2 weeks in an incubator, it would be hard to see, shouldnt be there at all actually. Porous shells should effect anything either, so no worries there.
    Just out of curiosity, what brand is it that you are using, I'm guessing a Little Giant maybe?? If so, in my experience, that's your problem. I have never gotten one of those blasted things to hold an accurate temp, the Hovabators will hatch a rock though, LOL!
    One more question, do you have the incubator in a climate controlled room? If not, that could be your problem, at 10 degree outside temp fluctuation will often throw off the incubator temp by a degree or 2.
    Hope we can figure this out for you, once you get the bugs worked out, it's tons of fun!

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