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Turning?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by NoVA Chicks, Nov 13, 2009.

  1. NoVA Chicks

    NoVA Chicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So, I've had four unsuccessful hatches so far--0%--and I'm open to suggestions of things to do differently. I've been turning by hand, and can't afford an automatic turner right now. A friend who used to raise birds commercially suggested that I not turn for the first 10 days to avoid damaging the delicate veins as they are developing. Does anyone have any options on that?
     
  2. _sonshine_

    _sonshine_ Out Of The Brooder

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    what kind of bator do you have?

    Before we got a egg turner we rolled the eggs.......we never picked them up to turn them. Use more than 1 thermometer.
     
  3. Akane

    Akane Overrun With Chickens

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    I've broken eggs that weren't turned for the first week and quit to find the embryo stuck to the side of the shell. I also just had a dozen eggs that my turner was in use elsewhere and I couldn't hand turn so I figured they'd be fine for a week. Every last one quit at various days from day 4 to 10 when I've hatched plenty of chicks from the same hens eggs this year. I've had other eggs that I hand turned and candled daily and had over 95% hatches. I see absolutely no correlation between handling eggs or turning and quitters but plenty of correlation between not turning and having them quit or you could have deformed chicks hatch. Hens turn their eggs and roll them to different positions underneath them a lot more frequently than we do from day 1 on.
     
  4. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    My Coop
    Too bad I'm on the other end of the country. I'd let you use my turner.
     
  5. peeppeeppeep

    peeppeeppeep Out Of The Brooder

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    I have a hovabator with fan. I used the egg carton method. Put them in the carton large end up. Then raise one end of the carton on a 2x4 or similar (lying flat, not high end up because there is not room for 4" elevation). 3-5 times a day I simply turned the carton around so the other end was raised. This is similar to what happens with the automatic turner. I had a big batch of eggs and I could not see handling them all that much. On day 18 I took the block out and set the cartons flat on the mesh.

    Out of 30 eggs I had 16 hatch (2 were deformed and died). 8 of the non-hatching eggs were Black Copper Marans that I bought by mail, and I think the conditions were not right for them. Also I messed with the temperature at hatch which I think kept more from hatching out as there were fully formed chicks in most of the eggs. One advantage of the egg carton method is that the hatched chicks can't roll the eggs around. Even with all the chicks hatching there was still room enough and of course I took them out after about 18-24 hours.

    I would use this method again as I think it worked fine and the other problems were due to my temperature/thermometer reading issues.

    I wonder if your temperature and humidity are correct? 0% seems to suggest an issue other than the turning method.
     
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2009
  6. NoVA Chicks

    NoVA Chicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm using a still air LG and one reason I liked the idea of not turning for the first week was that it mean opening the bator less. Can I put the 2x4 under one side of the incubator and just move it each time?
     
  7. Akane

    Akane Overrun With Chickens

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    I think opening the bator is good for the eggs. The exchange of air flow helps increase oxygen and the eggs do need oxygen and removal of carbon dioxide as the chick grows. Hens get off their eggs about once a day. Eggs will not cool quickly. They hold heat and so I'm told will take roughly 10mins to actually start cooling the middle of the egg. They also can continue to develop down to 96F and will survive for short periods of time below that. That means there should be no harm letting cool air in your incubator and it may be beneficial. Especially for still airs with poor ventilation. I cut 2 extra vent holes in the top of mine. The short drop in humidity also will do no harm unless it's around hatching time.
     
  8. kathyinmo

    kathyinmo Nothing In Moderation

    When turning by hand, make sure you wash your hands before turning. If not, that could cause bacteria to build and grow.
     
  9. peeppeeppeep

    peeppeeppeep Out Of The Brooder

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    Well, you could prop up the 'bator but I wouldn't for a couple of reasons. First, it's more likely that it will get knocked off and the eggs will break. Second, the water will be running around where it doesn't belong.

    As someone pointed out, it is normal for the eggs to have a short cooling period a few times a day as the hen gets off. The nice thing with the egg carton method is that you don't have the 'bator open long. It takes less than a minute to open it, turn the egg carton(s), check the water and add if needed, and close it back up.

    You might also invest in a hygrometer if you don't have one, to keep an eye on humidity, and a new temperature gauge

    Good luck with your next hatch.
     
  10. mulia24

    mulia24 Chillin' With My Peeps

    well, i'm also turning with hand and there's no problem except power outages everyday here. [​IMG]

    maybe you should get better egg or calibrate or find a better thermohygrometer. [​IMG]
     

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