Time Sensitive - Homemade incubator

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by reyecat, Sep 18, 2008.

  1. reyecat

    reyecat Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 1, 2008
    We have no way to measure the humidity..... they've started to hatch.... i hear cheeping from one mostly and theres a hole in that egg and cracks in two more. How can I tell if they are too dry?

    plus we incubated small-ish eggs 'cause we had to kill our rooster due to neighbours and we couldn't wait for the hens to start laying bigger eggs

    What would you do and how?
     
  2. Poulets De Cajun

    Poulets De Cajun Overrun With Chickens

    if they are pipping and hatching. LEAVE EM ALONE!!!

    If you try to fix anything you'll do more worse than good, because you will release whatever humidity is already in the incubator.

    If you are concerned that you dont have enough humidity, dampen a sponge and QUICKLY put it in there. Only open it once and make it as fast as possible, otherwise you run the risk of killing the others.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 18, 2008
  3. reyecat

    reyecat Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 1, 2008
    this is almost as bad as the first time I had to let my baby cry it out.....

    We are commited to not helping..... it's so hard though. I'll keep in mind about the sponge.
     
  4. twigg

    twigg Cooped up

    Mar 2, 2008
    Tulsa
    You really do need a decently large surface area of water to get up to 70%+ humidity at high temperatures.

    If you leave them alone (usually best advice) and the humidity is too low, then they might not be able to emerge.

    In a typical homemade incubator you should have about 50 to 75 sq in of water surface.

    Much less than this, add some, then leave it alone.

    Oh, and pop out to Walmart, if you can, and spend $7 on a Springfield Temp/Humid meter
     
  5. reyecat

    reyecat Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 1, 2008
    well we must be okay, they are emerging fine and not sticking to their shells or anything... we have approx 288 sq in (1ft x 2ft) of water under the heating element so I'm sure we're good then.
     
  6. twigg

    twigg Cooped up

    Mar 2, 2008
    Tulsa
    Quote:Really?

    I would want to make sure that the incubator wasn't too humid. Too high humidity can cause severe problems. The best way really is to measure it.

    As they are hatching, leave them to get on with it, and check next time.

    What kind of incubator is it .... 1ft x 2ft is a lot.
     
  7. Poulets De Cajun

    Poulets De Cajun Overrun With Chickens

    Quote:I've learned that when your start getting all scientific, measuring things, adding things, taking away things, you end up messing with the natural progression of things too much, and too much intereference ends up cutting things short.

    Glad you left them alone! Let us know what the final hatch numbers are.
     
  8. 77horses

    77horses ◊The Spontaneous Pullet!◊

    Aug 19, 2008
    [CONFIDENTIAL]
    OMG I'm in the SAME EXACT position as you!!! [​IMG]
    I made a homemade bator and I too don't have a humidity gauge to use! [​IMG] I am on day 18 and my one single egg is still going good, but humidity seems a bit too high. [​IMG] I took the water dish out and it seemed to go down. [​IMG] But I have to keep a VERY close eye on it!

    Good luck and yes, LEAVE THE EGGS ALONE!!! [​IMG] The chicks will do their thing, and all you have to do is make sure they can hatch properly. Good luck to you(and me!) and I hope we both get some great hatches! Keep us posted and you can find my post too about my chicky egg! [​IMG]
     
  9. twigg

    twigg Cooped up

    Mar 2, 2008
    Tulsa
    Quote:I've learned that when your start getting all scientific, measuring things, adding things, taking away things, you end up messing with the natural progression of things too much, and too much intereference ends up cutting things short.

    Glad you left them alone! Let us know what the final hatch numbers are.

    I've learned that when you don't take a methodical approach, measuring things and recording the results, you have no idea what went right, or what went wrong.

    Reading tealeaves won't help anymore than making assumptions and guesswork.

    er .... an incubator couldn't be best described as a natural process.
     
  10. reyecat

    reyecat Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 1, 2008
    well we have 3 so far.... we were expecting 2 more but one has piped and is poking through very slowly, oh so slow and the other stopped all movement this morning sometime... I'm still hoping for a miracle but I think it died in the shell. the one that has made a little hole for itself is still moving as much as it ever was but doesn't seem to be kicking up the pace. but the three seem healthy.

    ETA: about the humidity.... there are airholes in our incubator. I think with the large surface area of water, a fan and the airholes it keeps a very steady humidity. I don't know all the science behind it but it seems to be working well.... for such early eggs (hens had only been laying two weeks to a month). We are going to purchase a humidity reader thingy.... for next time.... cause we don't have to have the whole surface area with water, it's kinda bowed so.... plus we don't have to open the lid to adjust water... there's holes down in the bottom to add water or suck some out.... anyway. that's my story and I'm sticking to it... Man I'm tired. Up with the birds! Might have got the early worm but the worm is long gone and I'm just left with tired.

    i do thank you all for all your opinions, even differing ones... iron sharpens iron and all that.
     
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2008

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