What i learned being a first time hatcher do's and don'ts.

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by h4ppy-chris, Oct 5, 2011.

  1. h4ppy-chris

    h4ppy-chris Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 3, 2011
    burnley, UK
    What i learned being a first time hatcher do's and don'ts.

    the deal was i would borrow the bator of a friend he would supply the eggs and i would do the rest.
    as i can only have two chickens at the minute i get 2 ladies and he takes the rest.

    10 naked necks that he got from another breeder.
    30 warrens from is hens.

    by day 18 after candling

    9 naked necks.
    9 warrens.
    i was thinking what have i been doing wrong? nothing it turns out his cockerel is not very good at its job.


    run up to day 18:
    watching temp and humidity like a hawk.

    day 5:
    candling time after looking at lots of pics and vids on the net to get a good idea also candled a shop bought egg so i know what a clear egg looks like.
    set a timer to 20 minutes and started 10 warrens a bit suspect so put them in a line on their own.
    all naked necks looking good.

    day 8:
    opened up to top up water and a bit of a wiff um some things not right.
    could not rest so that evening candled them to find 2 eggs where rotten 8 was clear.
    now every day i was sniffing at the vents for any wiffs.

    day 12:
    oh oh the wiff was back so that evening candled them 2 more rotten warrens.
    if you smell the egg you can defo smell it, it's not strong but defo there.

    day 18: lock down time.
    all candled and now down to
    9 naked necks.
    9 warrens.
    all water trays filled to bring the humidity up and the eggs out of the auto turner and set on kitchen
    roll. lid on and not to be opened.

    day 21:
    1 egg had pipped 12 hours later the naked neck was out of the shell.
    brooder was ready and warmed up. 6 hours later chick was looking good.

    chick 1 was playing football with the other eggs, so thinking he was doing harm in there i took him out and put him in the brooder BIG BIG MISTAKE didn't know at the time. another egg had pipped 6 hours
    later a warren hatched. right your not gonna play football with the rest of the eggs so into the brooder

    one more egg has pipped 32 hours later a naked neck hatched. no more have pipped.

    now i have killed 16 chicks and finding it hard to live with myself!
    by taking the chicks out i lost the humidity and the temp dropped as the chicks in the shells were dying. tried to get the humidity back but too late.
    so thinking i was doing something good i was not.
    next time i will only open up at day 23 i hope this helps others new to hatching!

    whats your story from your 1st hatch? can you help me and others?

    kind regards chris.
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2011
  2. Arielle

    Arielle Chicken Obsessed

    Feb 19, 2011
    Massachusetts, USA

    You should be proud of yourself! I have read of people who have tried three or 4 times and NO eggs hatched.

    You kept notes and you know what to change next time--good job!

    ANd you have 3 chicks. Hope 2 are pullets! [​IMG]
  3. instar8

    instar8 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 30, 2011
    I'm pretty sure there was more going on than just opening the incubator a couple times. The first batch of 7 i did, i left them on my kitchen counter unturned for 10 days, had no way to check humidity, and just the cheapie thermometer that comes with the hovabator. I took each chick out, and had it open a bunch of time fiddling with a couple that were having trouble. 6 of 7 hatched, the one that didn't wasn't fertile.

    I think the stink is a strong clue. The next batch i did was shipped eggs, and i had 5 go rotten, and several that started to develop and stop, i have to think i had some bacterial problems.

    The last batch, i left scrambled shipped eggs in till day 18, and they never spoiled, they were very nice clean eggs, and actually fed em to my dogs.

    Anywho don't beatyourself up.
  4. ginbart

    ginbart Overrun With Chickens

    Mar 9, 2008
    Bloomsburg, PA
    My first hatch was bad, the temp went up to 110 over night and then the power went out for 12 hours taking the temp down to 86. Out of 42 eggs 20 hatched. I was amazed because I didn't think I would get any.

    I also learned to clean my bator everytime I'm done and if I know I'm going to use it again I clean it out a week before and let it sit in the sun. I am so afraid of bacterial problems.
  5. rachelcb80

    rachelcb80 Out Of The Brooder

    Sep 22, 2011
    My first time hatching eggs in the incubator went very well (for a first timer with not much of a clue). I used eggs from some RIR's that I had at the time. I put 18 eggs in and finished out with 14 chicks. I never candled so I'm not sure about the three eggs that didn't hatch but one egg was a chick that started hatching and died in the process. I admit to helping a few chicks hatch after that one and they all lived. Like you I felt bad watching the newly hatched chicks flop around in the incubator on that wire rack and kick the other eggs all over so I took each one out shortly after hatching. Honestly I don't think that was your downfall and why so many of your eggs didn't hatch.

    So great hatching only to have half of them eat one night by a bobcat just shortly after I transfered them to the chick pen outside. The pen had heavy square wire on it first, then chicken wire over it because the squares were pretty big. Did not think at all about an animal reaching through from the outside. I put up really tiny, heavy duty wire right after that and haven't had anymore losses.

    Hope you get your two pullets from this hatching and hopefully better luck to you if you try again down the road!
  6. cmom

    cmom Hilltop Farm

    Nov 18, 2007
    My Coop
    I personally take the chicks and their shells out of the hatcher when they hatch. I have done it both ways and left the chicks in, but a friend of mine reminded me that if you have a broody hatching she gets off the nest once in awhile to do her business, so now I don't worry about it any more. Probably the rooster was shooting blanks. Mine were during the summer heat. I have had many very successful hatches. I do have a Sportsman cabinet incubator that I incubate in and styrofoam LGs and Hova-Bators that I hatch in. I have 50 going into lockdown tomorrow. We did have problems with the fertility during the hot summer months as the boys just didn't feel like jumping the girls as often and when they did I think they were shooting blanks so I took a couple of months off from hatching. Some friends of mine had the same issues. We live in Florida.

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