Thursday, May 11, 2017

Time To Add A New Rooster!

This was a dry incubation through day 19 and I added 4 tablespoons of water after the egg turner was removed for the hatch that began on day 20.  The humidity hung around 15-25% throughout the first 19 days and when I added the water it raised to 65% and steadily lowered to around 35% on the 21st day.  I had a heat issue during the hatch that killed a few chicks before they hatched.  Most likely cause by the sunny day warming up my metal shop while I had the door closed and didn't have a breeze passing through my shop.  My temperature alarm never alerted me.

When I candled the eggs on the 19th day I had 19 clears which is telling me my 3 year old rooster is not getting the job complete plus a handful of hens are the same age as well.  The coyote or bobcat snatched my young rooster in February and just replace a young rooster in April.  From the 29 developed eggs 17 hatched which isn't a good hatch rate.  External conditions most likely reduced this hatch rate.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

All Colors

March Beauties!

This is a barnyard mix of eggs with half being from Easter egger hens.  30 chicks hatched from the 48 eggs with 18 eggs being clears when I candled them on the 19th day and placed them on the hatching floor.  Not sure why I had so many clears other than I did notice several eggs were from the same hen.

The first of March had several cold fronts come through and I had the incubator in my unheated barn on the bench.  It's interesting how cold fronts effect the humidity levels, as a front came through the humidity was reading 0 and the alarm was sounding when I went to the barn of a mornings.  I added 2 tablespoons of water and this would raise the humidity up to the 30% range and drop throughout the day.  The first 13 days I added 2 tablespoons of water to the water channels daily to raise the humidity from a 0 ready of a morning.  After the 13th day I didn't have to add any water to the incubator and the we didn't have any cold fronts pass through our area either.

On the 19th day I added 4 tablespoons of water and the eggs were placed on the hatching floor.  When the lid was closed on the 19th day; the humidity was reading in the mid 40% range and it flucuated from 30-50% during the hatch at the end of the 21st day.  I did not lift the lid until the hatch was complete and I was ready to move the chicks to brooder box. 

I hope your egg incubation is providing good results and if you haven't tried the dry incubation method; please give it a try.  Dry incubation has increased my hatch rate.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Nice hatch to start the 2017season!

It's time for a few new chickens on the farm, so I pull the incubator out of the box and turned it on in the non-heated barn.  The incubator warmed up quickly and the humidity alarm sounded even though it's set on 0.  I planned this incubation as a dry incubation and wasn't going to add any water to the water channels.  However, I had to add 2 tablespoons of water 5 times throughout the incubation period because the alarm was sounding at 0 reading and the rest of the time the humidity ranged around 15-20% unless a cold front came through.  On the 19th day I added 4 tablespoons of water to the water channel and the humidity fluctuated between 30-55% through the end of the 21st day.  I never lifted the lid from day 19 through the end of day 21.

Overall a good barnyard mix hatch of 37 chicks from the 48 eggs.  5 eggs were clears and the rest had some development when I candled the eggs on the 19th day as I took them off the egg turner.  If you haven't try the dry incubation method, please give it a try.  I only added  2 tablespoons of water when the humidity alarm was sounding at 0 and this happened when a cold front came through.
4 tablespoons of water on the 19th day!

These chicks are ready for a meal!