Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Better Hatch

Round 3 incubation went through the 22nd day and of the 24 eggs candled on the 10th day 15 hatched.  2 Barred Rocks and the remainder are barnyard mix.  One chick hatched at the end of the 20th day, 7 hatched on the 21st day and 7 hatched throughout the 22nd day.  Nice to have a fair hatch and may want to raise temperature on the next incubation so everything hatches on the 21st day.  The humidity level was in the upper 60% when 1 cup of water was added and steadily dropped as it evaporated within a 24 hour period.  Interesting I had to add water almost daily, verses the previous incubation's I didn't add water daily.
Three thermometers were placed inside the incubator for comparison and wouldn't you know each had a different reading by 2 degrees.  The oldest thermometer with the 99.5° reading is what I used to adjust the Janoel8-48 thermometer and this thermometer is reading lower than the other 2  new thermometers.  I may need to adjust the Janoel8-48 thermometer for a the next incubation to have a completed hatch at the end of the 21day.

Friday, December 26, 2014

Three Thermometers

I received an incubator thermometer with the 99.5° marking for Christmas and when I compared the thermometer reading with the 2 other thermometer's, I got 3 different readings! Seriously why is this a challenge.

Today is the beginning of the 19th day and the turning tray was removed.  I candled the 24 eggs and all looked good for the final days before the hatch.  The weather has been holding in the 50's an my humidity level has remained around the 65% until the 1 cup of water evaporates in a 24 hour period.

Today I placed 1 3/4 cup of water in the channels for the last three days and my humidity is 73%, hopefully this will drop a few overnight.

I didn't have any eggs piped as I previously had on the 19th day,  hopefully correcting the temperature setting for the 3rd hatch will bring the hatch closer to the 21st day.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Round Three Incubation

The left side is a dozen Brabanter eggs from crème and gold stock through an EBay purchase.  I really need a rooster from this hatch, LOL.  The blue eggs are from Crème Legbar stock.  The rest of the eggs are from the barnyard mix.  Hopefully, I have the temperature setting adjusted from recalibrating the temperature. 

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Temperature Test for a Few Days

Anxious to begin the third round with Janoel8, but I feel the temperature needs adjusted to increase my hatch rate especially with the many dead embryo chicks in the past 2 incubation's.  I have 2 thermometers inside the incubator and I will collect readings at various times for the next few days.

The instruction manual suggested a 37.6°C setting and I kept this sitting for the first 2 incubation's.  As of now I have the temperature setting at 37.2°C and my 2 thermometers are reading 99.5°F and 100°F.  I will rotate the thermometers around the incubator for a couple of days to make sure I am at the 99.5°F reading. 

Update;  the incubator has been running at 37.2°C for 5 days now and the two thermometers inside continue to read 99.5°F and 100°F as I move them around to different areas.  Last night I calibrated the temperature setting by holding the set button for three seconds then moved the + sign until I came to CA.  When CA was displayed I quickly pushed set button and moved the - button setting to -.03.  The incubator will return to normal on its own after adjustment.  I adjusted Janoel8 temperature display to 37.5°C and continued monitoring the external thermometer temperatures and noticed I was now cooler holding 98.0°F, so recalibrated my settings +.03°.  After the second calibration my thermometers have been displaying 99.5° and 100°F.  The 37.5°C is the reading I want displayed.

I've noticed the cloudy damp weather outside has helped with holding the humidity in the low 60% range after placing 2 cups of water in the water channels.  I will only add 1 cup the next time when the humidity drops to mid 40% range.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Second Round Incubation Was A Challenge

Happy Thanksgiving!
I was holding out for one of my Jubilee Orpington eggs to complete its hatching at the end of day 21, but it didn't survive the hatch.  DANG! was counting on at least one EBay egg to hatch.  7 of the fresh barnyard eggs hatched with 1 hatching on the 19th day and 6 on the 20th day.  As you can see in the photo one of the chicks membrane lining was stuck to his back and he's not too pretty but seems to be okay in the brooder.  A little review of this incubation round 24 of the eggs had been refrigerated prior to incubation and all the eggs were clear.  Seven of the eggs were EBay Jubilee Orpington eggs with 4 of them clear,  2 embryos, and 1 developed chick who didn't survive.  The other 17 eggs were fresh barnyard mix eggs and 4 were clear, 5 embryo, and 1 dead chick.
Upon viewing the dead embryos, chick development stopped between day 11 through the 14th day.  I noticed on my records, day 10 through the 14th day I had to add water regularly to maintain the humidity level above 55%.  This time period was our first cold spell that lasted several days.
The incubator is cleaned and I will begin the 3rd round next week when I have a good selection of fresh eggs.  The 3rd round I will have the Hava-Bator thermometer inside to help maintain an ideal temperature of 99.5° F and may leave some of the egg turner area free to place a wet sponge on the tray if we have cold weather during the incubation. 

Monday, November 24, 2014

Egg Turner Removed

Comparing the 1825 Hava-Bator thermometer to Janoel8's thermometer which was set at 37.6°  Celsius (99.68° F) and the Hava-Bator was reading 101° F, so I lower Janoel8's to 37.5° C (99.5° F) and the Hava-Bator adjusted to 100° F which has been holding at that temperature the last couple of days.  

One of the barn yard eggs has piped the outershell and is peeping away at the end of the 18th day.  Water channels are full of water and I placed a container of water on the hatching tray to hopefully keep the humidity at 65%.  The winter days has evaporated the water from the channels every couple of days and maintaining a good 55-60% humidity range has been a challenge.  
The egg turner has been removed at the end of the 18th day and hopefully a good hatch takes place over the next couple of days. 

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Barnyard Chicks are Growing

These chicks are on fast track to feathering out since ole man winter showed up right after they hatched.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Candling of Second Round

Humidity alarm was sounding at 5 am this morning, had to drag my self out of a warm bed and placed a cup full of water in the channels until later this morning. The Humidity reading was 44% and the alarm goes off below 45%.

We have our first snowfall for the winter and close to 2 inches so far.  I candled the eggs this morning and the good news is I still have a few developing eggs.  The second round incubation contained 24 refrigerated Araucana eggs and 19 were clears leaving 5 with signs of development.  4 of the 7 eggs from EBay Jubilee Orpington's were clear leaving me 3 with signs of development.  From the 17 fresh barnyard eggs only 1 was clear leaving me with 16 eggs with signs of development.  All of the 25 clears were clear when I broke them open and there are a few of the developing eggs remaining in the incubator that will be questionable at day 18 even though they presented blood vein network.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Cold Spell Rough on Incubator

It's day 9 on the second round of incubation an the cold weather is taxing the incubator.  The humidity level has dropped to 45% every 2 days after filling water channels with 2 cups since the cold front showed up last Tuesday.  Once I refill the channels the humidity  quickly raises to 60% and then drops gradually the following day.

My digital thermometer Acu Rite 0088 arrived yesterday and I placed the temperature probe in the incubator and so far my incubator temperature and the digital thermometer reading are not matching.  Dang!  The Janoel8 instruction manual recommends a setting of 37.6° C = 99.68° F and the digital thermometer has had various readings from 98.2° to 99. 1° F which is not giving me a good feeling.  I have moved the probe around to various places inside the incubator and I get different readings.  After viewing the various reading I have pulled the digital thermometer out and began comparing it with our other Acu Rite 00782 model and the new digital readings don't match.  Thinking the new digital isn't true and reading the warranty says it has a 1 year return with a $5 handling charge.  Great!  I paid $14 for the digital and is it worth the return! 

My thoughts to a plan of action is:  I am leaving the temperature settings along until the 11th day when I will candle the eggs.  If  the temperature has been to low especially on the 4th day then I am going to be disappointed in my candling.  With the incubator made of plastic I am wondering if keeping a consistent temperature is a greater task when it's cold weather outside.  The room temperature varies between 68-78° F throughout the day.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Going To Be Cold For A Few Days!

This is day 6 for the second round incubation and I've made a few adjustments.  I've place the incubator on a wooden table to hopefully help balance the heat as I noticed my feet were cool while standing on the tile floor.  The cold weather has reduced the humidity and when I began the 2nd round incubation I placed 3 1/2 cups of water in the water channels instead of 4.  The channels will hold the 3 1/2 cups without overflow.  On day 4 for I added 3 cups when the humidity fell to 45% and that raised it back to 60%.  This morning the humidity had dropped to 46% and I added 2 cups and the humidity returned to 60%.

I borrowed a wireless thermometer from a good friend to help me verify the temperature and have since ordered a non wireless digital thermometer to better check my temperature readings. 

The dozens chicks from the 1st hatch are down to 11.  One of the chicks from the two chicks that needed assistance from their eggshell died and the other chick is far behind from the chicks that hatched themselves.  I have seen this happen with chicks hatched under a hen, where those having trouble hatching late seldom do well or survive in the long run.

The cold weather has blown into Kansas and is suppose to hang around for a couple of weeks.  This will definitely add another challenge to a set of eggs that are already challenged.    

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Round Two Incubation with Janoel 8-48

This set of eggs may be a challenge.
This group of eggs consist of 24 olive/blue eggs from Araucana's.  These egg were purchased at a swap and had been refrigerated a few days for consumption instead of incubation.  Years ago I took 12 eggs that had been refrigerated and placed them under a sitting hen and 4 eggs hatched.  So when I came across these Araucana eggs I though lets give it a try.  If the refrigerator temperature didn't get below 40 degrees I might have a chance.
There are 8 Jubilee English Orpington eggs from EBay and with mail delivery eggs the hatch rate varies in low percentages.
There are 11 barnyard eggs from the chickens who provided eggs in round 1 incubation setting.  The remainder 5 eggs are fresh from the hen house today and they will be a brown egg layer mix breed.
I placed another digital thermometer with a probe inside the incubator to see if the reading was the same as the incubator.  The incubator is set at 37.6° C and the digital thermometer read 37° C or
 99° F., I wish the digital had readings in the tenths.  My temperature goal is 99.5° F.  

Dozen Barnyard Chicks

Chicks relaxed in the brooder.

Fact sheet on first round incubation.
Day 21 on the first hatch using Janoel8-48 and the hatch rate was 25%.  10 of the chicks hatched on the 20th day and 2 chicks hatch today with assistance.  The two chicks eggshell appeared to be dry even though the humidity reading was showing 64% this morning.
The disappointing part of this incubation was the 9 fully developed chicks that were dead.  The yolk sac on each of these chicks had not absorbed into their abdomen, so this tells me something went wrong on day 17 or later.  The other 12 eggs with dead embryo had varied developed chicks. 
Reviewing the instruction manual for incubation faults or operator error are:
  • Eggs held longer than 7 days before incubation.
  • Incubator temperature to high or low.
  • First time incubation rarely brings hatch rate success above 50%.
Time to clean the incubator and make it ready for the second incubation.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Active Chicks on Day 20

A few early chicks on day 20.
The hatch began around 7 am this morning and the chick who cracked his shell on day 18 wasn't the first to hatch today.  There are 8 chicks rolling the unhatched eggs around as they wonder through the maze of eggs and they look content on the hatching tray.  I can see several eggs with chicks pecking through the shell and few eggs lying idle. 

Monday, November 3, 2014

A Few Noisy Chicks on Day 19

It's the evening of day 19 and few chicks have pecked open an air hole in their eggshell and are chirping occasionally.  Hope it's not too noisy at bedtime LOL!  The humidity is holding at 65-66% and its raining outside which is probably helping the incubator maintain the 65% humidity.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Eggs Are On The Hatching Tray

Candled the 48 eggs and 15 were clear leaving 33 for a hopeful hatch.

Day 18 and this chick has peeped the eggshell.
Day 18 and time to transfer the eggs from the turner to the hatching tray.  I candled the 48 eggs and 33 showed a nice air sac with a dark area within the rest of the egg.  The remaining 15 eggs were clear when I broke them open without any development visible.  One of the eggs the chick has already peeped the eggshell and I was surprised to see this on day 18.  I would rather the chick wait for the others, because I don't want to lift the lid till the majority of the eggs have hatched in order to keep the humidity level at 65% per the instructions.   The humidity has been holding around 60% the last few days.
While candling the eggs I thought I would be able to see a chick on day 18, but even the chick that has peeped the eggshell wasn't recognizable within the egg.  The chick was moving his beak within the egg.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Day 11 Eggs Are Turning

Day 11 and the incubator humidity has been holding between 61-63 % this past week.  Definitely  see the difference when cloudy weather passes through the area.  With the wonderful assistance of Sally we candled a few eggs yesterday evening.  I checked one row of 8 eggs and found 7 eggs showing signs of development with dark areas in the yoke and 1 egg with clear fluid.  Being my first time visually looking at developed candled eggs I am not comfortable with saying I had 7 lively eggs.  However, I candled several of our fresh eggs from the hen house and the visual difference is obvious the 7 candled incubator eggs were different from the fresh eggs and the 1 egg that was clear. 

On the eighth day when I checked the water level in the water channel it was mostly evaporated and I added another 4 cups of water.  The humidity was still holding at 62% and hadn't begin dropping.  This is telling me two things:  the eggs themselves probably effects the humidity level and the operator needs to visually check the water channels every 4 days to see what water level one actually has in the incubator. 

Monday, October 20, 2014

Barnyard Chickens

Buff orpingtons who supplied a few eggs.

Barn yard mix who supplied eggs as well.
This is day 5 into the first round incubation an the eggs look great.  The egg turner is rotating the 48 eggs every 2 hours automatically with ease.  The humidity has been 57-58 % and this morning it was 52%, later today I will add water to the water channels.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

48 Eggs Ready for Incubation

The water channels were refilled and 48 eggs were placed on the egg turner.  The count down begins!  This photo was taken after sunset and the humidity dropped from the 59% reading throughout the daylight hours today.

A few nice looking eggs!  Buff Orpington and mix large brown egg layer hens provided these eggs for the first round incubation.  Excited for this 21 day journey!

Humidity Drops on Day 4

As day 4 came the humidity level began dropping  throughout the day from 59%.   The water level had evaporated within the water channels, so the incubator is following the instruction guidelines as it stated you would be refilling the water channels every 4-5 days.  I added 4 cups of water to the water channels. 

I mentioned earlier the platform tray is tight fitting and you would need something to help lift the tray out from the bottom unit.  I made use of a large paper clip and it worked like a charm lifting the tray out.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Display Reading During Test Trail

When my JN8-48 arrived the instructions recommended you set your incubator up and let it run for several days before actually placing your eggs in the incubator.  The displays setting are factory pre-set and within the instructions the only adjustment recommended for change is the temperature setting.
The display setting from top left is the egg turner timer (displaying 0147),  every two hours the turner rotates and this photo shows 1 hour 47 minutes until the next rotation.  The bottom left display is the number of days into incubation (displaying 03 = day 3).  The right top display is the temperature setting and the factory setting is 38.0°C and the instructions recommended to lower it to 37.6°C.  The green buttons to the left of the temperature are the setting adjustments.  Lowering the settings to 37.6°C was easy to adjust by moving the + or - button.  The right bottom button is the humidity level reading and the factory alarm setting is 45%, and the present level is 59% and the instructions suggest the humidity level be 60% during the first 18 days.  I placed 4 cups of water into the water channels during setup.  The instructions stated  water would be added every 4-5 days.
When I first plugged-in the incubator and turned the on button on, the alarm bell sounded until the temperature and humidity level reached your desired settings.  You can push the setting button to re-set the alarm so you don't have to listen to the beep until the proper settings are reached.
As you can see I am into day 3 of the trial run and the incubator temperature has read 37.6°C and the humidity level read 58% on day 1 and 59% since then.
In 2 days I will place eggs in the incubator. 

Hardware Review

The JN8-48 parts are made of plastic, the outer shell feels durable for regular handling.  Would the plastic crack if you dropped the unit?  Probably!  The lid has four clear viewing ports and 2 air flow ports.  The operation reading display is digital and easy to read and the setting buttons are large enough to push during adjustments or re-set.      

Under the hatching tray are two water channels for the humidity during incubation.  The hatching tray is tight fitting within the outer shell and if you have large fingers I would suggest finding a tool to hook the tray to lift out from the bottom base.  Initial review of the tray looks like it can be cleaned with a brush and a cleaning agent.

The egg turner motor wire plugs into a lead wire on the lid and this restricts the distance you have to move the lid away from the bottom unit during maintenance. The egg turner rotates every 2 hours and the 2013 model is suppose to be made of heavier plastic from the earlier version.  Without eggs the turner moves smoothly and I am anxious to see how the tray moves with 48 eggs.

Welcome JANOEL8-48 Egg Incubator

Welcome to Country Life of JANOEL8-48 Incubator.  I have been searching for an inexpensive egg incubator these past few months and may I say my search for reviews were lacking the data I wanted to read as to whether a particular model was worth the consideration.
I found a blog thread from Australia that gave several positive reviews towards the JN8-48 newest model and the JN8-48 was in my price range for a beginners use of an egg incubator.  If your willing to spend several hundred dollars on an egg incubator, then you'll be able to find good reviews towards the purchase of an upper end egg incubator.
I use sitting hens throughout the summer to hatch my eggs and the success rate is nearly 100%.  I have visited with local poultry enthusiast about their success rate with the use of an egg incubator and most have a fair to poor hatch rate with their egg incubator.
I purchased the JN8-48 incubator from E-bay and it  arrived last Friday in great condition.  I read the instructions and plugged it in for a test period through Wednesday.  On Wednesday 48 eggs consisting of Buff Orpington and brown egg layer mix will be placed in the incubator.  I will post regular events about the JN8-48 to help the reader get a feel for this particular model.