total of 40 eggs were started in our new ReptiPro 6000 incubator this
morning, if all goes well they should hatch Saturday, April 20th. There
are 15 that I got from a local family in a fertile hatching egg trade,
these breeds include light Brahma, Golden Polish and some mixed breed
Polish, Buttercup, Silver Laced Wyandotte and Leghorn birds.
The remaining 25 eggs are from our hens.
gray stuff along the front of each rack is some weatherstripping to
keep eggs from rolling out. I'd tried to line the racks with wire,
but it ended up holding too much heat and making the temps go haywire, so I removed it.
got a new hygrometer, in the back, top left. The purple thing is the
water weasel which holds the temp probe, it simulates what the temp is
inside an egg which is what you want. Dud eggs will be removed as
All of the eggs have been numbered and
look good. The weird round tracing on the large end of the eggs are the
outline of the air cell--I'm changing my incubating technique radically
and in addition to turning the eggs by hand 5 times a day (I have no
life for the next 18 days) and candling them on days 7, 14 and 18 to
make sure that they are losing the proper amount of weight (which is
moisture--13% over 21 days), and will trace the new outline of the air
cells on the eggs at that time--it'll end up looking a bit like the
rings of a cut section of tree trunk. In addition I'll be weighing each
rack of eggs every 3-4 days to make sure they are losing the correct
percentage of weight. Between weighing the eggs and candling, you get a
very good indication of how the eggs are doing--if the air cell is
looking too large, the humidity is too low, if it is to small, the
humidity too high.
So the hatch SHOULD be Saturday, April 20th.
But given past years, the little buggers may well be a bit early or late
according to Mother Nature's whim. If you go to the UStream Chickam
page and see EGGS, it means the hatch is on!
The plan is for the
ReptiPro to hatch the chicks, which will then immediately be removed to
our old forced air styrofoam incubator to dry out & get strong. I'm
going to try and get at least one of our girls to go broody so that she
can take over the chicks once they are in the brooder box.
will be testing the cam for a few minutes a couple of days prior to
hatch just to make sure everything's working. We may also put the cam
out in the yard with the adult chickens, our back yard is nearing
completion and we may be allowing the chickens out of the run and into
it for the first time.