In the Brooder
- Apr 29, 2010
I have been having a problem getting chicks to hatch this year, and can't figure out why. It may be more obvious to some on here thats why I figured I'd ask. I have been hatching birds for 4 years now. Up until this year I have been dealing exclusivley with ducks. Last year I bought a QFC 1588 and was turning my duck eggs by hand and getting 75-80% hatch rate. This year I decided I was going to do more hatching and bought another 1588 and also bought a QFC cabinet model 1502 sportsman. I've been using the 1502 as an incubator and the two 1588's as a hatchers. I've been incubating Duck, Quail and Chickens this year. I've had o.k. success with the quail, getting about a 60-70% hatch (have around 70 chicks hatched). The chickens I have gotten 8 out of 32 so far this year. The ducks have by far done the worse. I only have 14 chicks out of 250+ eggs. I usually give them about 4 days after they are supposed to hatch then take whats left out and break them open to see whats going on. I would say that of the ones I break open 90% or better are developing and most look like they made it to the hatching stage but died. When I break them on a rock the shell usually bounces off and the membrane around the shell will stay in tact. This is going on with all the different birds. The humidity in my 1502 has been staying right around 50% +/- a few. I keep the tray full of water all the time. I only open the door about once every 2-3 days to add water or add eggs or take eggs out. I have them set up to where I put the eggs in once a week, and set up on a hatching schedule. When I transfer them to the 1588 at lockdown stage I have the hatcher ready and usually put a thermometer in with it to keep an eye on temp. I don't have a way to monitor the humidity in the hatcher, but I fill all the trays with water and usually put a damp sponge in as well. The glass usually has water droplets on it, so I know there is plenty of moisture. Can some of you with more experience than me tell me what might be going on? I've done lots of reading on here and tried to learn as much as possible, but its starting to get frustrating. Thanks in advance for any help.