Temp slightly fluctuating. Embryos ok?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by AtlantisPeeps, Jun 11, 2016.

  1. AtlantisPeeps

    AtlantisPeeps Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 19, 2014
    I've had my eggs in the bator since Teusday. My incubator is quite old and the temp fluctuates. It's a LG still air. It ranges from 90 to 103. I have been desperately trying to get it stable but I fear it's impossible. I'm trying to encourage myself that naturally under a broody the temp can fluctuate, but I'm kinda nervous.

    Should the embryos be ok?
  2. CrazyChickens09

    CrazyChickens09 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 14, 2009
    SC Kansas
    I wouldn't stress to much about it unless it gets really high 105+ for hours then you have something to be concerned about. Hens normally get off the nest and back on many times a day so embryos typically have temperature fluctuations in the wild.
  3. Pyxis

    Pyxis Hatchi Wan Kenobi Premium Member

    Mar 27, 2012
    My Coop
    Those highs and lows are really intense. The highs actually might be okay - it's not good for them to be sustained at 103 because it causes developmental issues, but 103 won't technically kill them outright. When the internal temp of the egg reaches 104, that's when they die.

    The lows however are really low - ten degrees low. With lows that low, you're risking developmental issues and the possibility that the eggs won't even develop.

    What I would do is create a way to tell the internal temperature of the eggs. Eggs don't heat up or cool down as fast as the air around them. The inernal temp is what really matters, and if that stays in the correct range despite the temp swings you'll be okay. You'll need a probe type thermometer like those that are used for reptiles - you can order one online or pick it up at a pet store. Then either find a water wiggler toy that they make for kids (usually they have them for sale at dollar stores) or fill a ziploc bag partway with water and fold it into a tube and secure it like that with a hair tie, etc (here are instructions with pictures). Stick the probe thermometer inside. This will give you a general idea of what the internal temp of your eggs is.

    You might also try some tricks to stabilize the temps in your incubator. You can add some water bottles or river rocks to act as heat sinks and help hold the heat. You can also make sure you put it in a room where the outside temperature is fairly stable, since they tend to be sensitive to swings in external temperature.
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2016
  4. AtlantisPeeps

    AtlantisPeeps Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 19, 2014
    It only went down to 90 once and it wasn't for long. I quickly adjusted it. This incubator is quick to get change temp. I haven't opened it in 2 days trying to get the temp stable but it looks as if every time I walk by it I'll have to adjust it. It's never been too low or too high for long. I am an anxious chicken mom and check it all the time lol. Thanks for the advice!

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