Two questions (and hello from lurkdom)

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Kitchen Chickin, Feb 15, 2012.

  1. Kitchen Chickin

    Kitchen Chickin New Egg

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    Feb 15, 2012
    Hi! This is my first post, but I've been lurking for well over a year :)

    Last summer I bought a Genesis to hatch from our friends' Coturnix flock. It was an amazing experience for me and my kids--over the course of the summer we hatched out about 150 quail. I averaged 75-85% hatch rate; of course these were super fresh eggs from happy little birds living 3 miles away. Later in the summer I branched out, and ordered some different varieties of Coturnix from a couple different sellers on eBay. I seemed to average about 50% hatch rate with the shipped eggs.

    My mom asked if we wanted to hatch out some RIRs to add to her backyard layer flock, and I was like, YES! So this is my first shot at chickens. I didn't think it would be too much different than the quail. So, back to eBay I went. When the eggs arrived, they were covered in feces ... never had that happen with the quail. I followed Storey's advice for a warm dilute bleach solution and warmer rinse, before setting the cool eggs. Here we are at day 21 for the first batch (the order came in 2 boxes spaced 2 days apart), and I have 4 fluffy chicks and 1 dead pip ... and they all pipped the evening of Day 19. It's Day 19 for the second batch and I have 6 pips. Candling at Days 7 and 14 resulted in heavy culls (all correctly culled; I did a Ziploc postmortem).

    Here are my questions:
    1. Is my temp too high? Hygrometer reads 55-65% humidity throughout the day; 2 days before hatch date (um, in this case, the day of hatch!) I filled the other trough and humidity went above 70%. Turned off the turner and removed the racks to lay eggs on incubator floor. Never any problems with the Coturnix though they did seem to come a day or two early but I attributed that to our 100-degree ambient temps. Like the quail laid the eggs and they started "incubating" immediately. Now I wonder, though ... ? With this sad 10% hatch rate, my mom's going to have me hatch her some more so I need to know if I ought to fool with the wafer thermostat or not, before setting another batch. And can I just say I'm gnashing my teeth over the upgraded Genesis that's now available?? Agh!!

    2. Mom wants Barred Rocks for the next batch; she has BRs already and I think she's paranoid that these guys aren't as good as the BRs since they didn't hatch. I'm wondering if it isn't because I had them shipped in January. Or because they were dirty. Or whatever, I don't know ... but by all accounts BRs and RIRs are pretty similar in their needs (right?) ... anyway so I'm wondering if anyone can recommend a good place to buy BR hatching eggs? I hope that's not against forum rules or something. I'm in Western OK and would be willing to drive; a short ship from someplace warm is acceptable as well. What are your thoughts on buying hatching eggs from eBay?

    Thanks for reading my long post! I'm really looking forward to your feedback! :)

    Sara
     
  2. Chicken_Pauper

    Chicken_Pauper Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 8, 2011
    Southern California
    I've read... that you are not to wash eggs that are used for hatching.... there's something in the shell (on the shell?) that's needed for the hatch (and the shells are porous). Now, I never have used an incubator... (only broody hens) and, I've seen some eggs that were washed and refrigerated then hatch under a hen (not my hatch). But, I did read somewhere about "not washing" eggs you are going to hatch. I'm sure there are people who know more than I do... but, I ran across that info somewhere (looked at mostly "university" websites) when I was looking at the proper way to wash / clean eggs for eating.
    I have misplaced my copy of "Raising Chickens for Dummies", but it seems it also says not to wash eggs for hatching? Not sure.

    Best of luck.
     
  3. Kitchen Chickin

    Kitchen Chickin New Egg

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    Feb 15, 2012
    I think it's called the "bloom," and I didn't want to wash it off. But there was just SO much poop. It seemed riskier to leave the poop, than to wash them. And it wasn't just chunks that I could pick off (sorry, that's gross, but I did try it!), it was smeared all over. :(
     
  4. The Chickeneer

    The Chickeneer ~A Morning's Crow~

    I ordered RIR eggs, and same thing, there was poop. But it's never really a problem for me. Its ok to rinse hatching eggs, I don't know about washing them..........in bleach. But what I do is I squirt some hand sanitizer on a paper towel, then I wipe the eggs down. I have RIR eggs hatching right now, and they seem to be doing fine. Good luck with your hatch[​IMG]

    and I almost forgot [​IMG] as an official member and not just a random guest[​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2012

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