Turning eggs on the weekends

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Knittycat, Feb 1, 2013.

  1. Knittycat

    Knittycat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My daughter wants to hatch chickens at school. The teacher is excited about the prospect, and so we've set it up that the middle of the month, we'll set up the incubator in the classroom.
    But, the weekends :\ The eggs will be turned three times a day during the week, but that's not possible during the weekends. The teacher said she could get someone there to turn them in the morning and evening though. Would turning twice a day instead of three be too detrimental to the hatch?
     
  2. mstricer

    mstricer Overrun With Chickens

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    I would say you need to invest in a turner
     
  3. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

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    Ideally eggs should be turned 3-5 times a day, minimum, but twice a day for 2 days is not too bad. it is better than not turning them at all. Turning is very important during the first week of incubation, so if it is at all possible to get someone to turn them 3 times on the first weekend that would help a lot.
     
  4. chickenwing661

    chickenwing661 Out Of The Brooder

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    I've always turned my eggs twice a day. 4am before work then 6pm after work. I've always had a very good hatch rate. Just recently stared to use auto turner. See how this works out.
     
  5. Knittycat

    Knittycat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'd love an auto turner. Can't afford it though :(
     
  6. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    Twice a day, skip a day.... a few days missed won't hurt. Temp is more important. Also, plan a class hatch to occur on a monday/tuesday. Biggest issue with the class hatches I've done is that schools do not heat at night or on weekends to be eco friendly. The incubator was not powerful enough to maintain 100F when the room was in the 50's
     
  7. Knittycat

    Knittycat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Ok, good to know. I'll relax a bit.
    If I skip a weekend, which weekend would be the least hazardous to egg health?
    If I set on tuesday (so hatch days will me monday/tuesday/wednesday) would the first weekend or the second weekend be the least traumatic to skip? (I'm trying to make this as easy as possible on the teacher or the janitor)
     
  8. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    The turning is more important early than late. Body parts are forming especially in the first week. If they are not turned some body parts can form in the wrong place and the chick dies. Turning in the first week is most important.

    I don't know what stage you are in, but you might call your county extension agent, in the phone book under county government. Not all agents are as good as some others, but the agent should be able to help you find an incubator with an automatic turner. They are also usually associated with 4-H. You just might get some expert help through that agent.

    Good luck!! I applaud you for what you are trying.
     
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2013
  9. Egghead_Jr

    Egghead_Jr Overrun With Chickens

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    I only turn twice a day and get 85% hatch rate on my own eggs. Some of those are stored for two weeks prior to incubating too. Turning is important but nothing to stress over. Temperature is your most important factor and as SilkieChicken said the school room temp will fluctuate dramatically so expect the hatch to be a day or two late. Also think of insulating the incubator for the weekends.
     
  10. Knittycat

    Knittycat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The temperature in my house fluctuates dramatically too, in addition to it being very drafty. (it was built in 1919) I've warmed it up and watched it over a few days, and after working out some hot-spot kinks, I've found that it holds the temperature very well. My next think to tackle is making sure the humidity stays stable. I'd been paying so much attention to the temp that I hadn't really noticed the humidity fluctuations. They seem to be minor so far though as long as I keep a bit of water in the pan.
     

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