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#105603 - 08/30/12 08:29 AM Re: still air V air bator [Re: Angela Stanley]
jonnydot Offline
Flock Leader

Registered: 12/05/11
Posts: 298
Loc: australia
Statified air works exceedinly well under a broody..but an incbator is not a hen and it is an unatural process ,what we have to do is get things as close as we can to "natural" ;..with most bators latural flow or laminar is not possiable without a fan and cold spots occur whilst this also occurs under a broody the fact is that they turn and move their eggs more times in a day than I could spit so the cold areas are not a concern in an incubator they are ,as most turn once over 4 hrs and not 10 times or more IN an hour ,based on this I would go for an auto turn that allows a programmeing for a turn that takes an hour every hour and fan forced

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#105736 - 09/11/12 11:51 AM Re: still air V air bator [Re: jonnydot]
Uno Offline
Lord of the Fowl

Registered: 08/26/05
Posts: 1280
Loc: Canada
Hatching eggs in an incubator is like playing poker. Sometimes you get a good hand, many times you don't. It's a gamble. Poultry enthusiasts are always trying to increase their chances by building (or buying) a better bator. OR fiddling with humidity, or pondering the age and genetics of the eggs they put in the bator. There are so many things that can go wrong, and only a few of them are in your control.

While the failures are upsetting and costly and frustrating, they are also a valuable way to LEARN. Never throw out an egg without opening it to see what you can find out. Even when you candle and decide one is dead, open it and see if your judgement was right or not. This is how you get better, by finding out everything you can.

I use a still air Hovabator that I put a teeny computer fan into. It does not work very well. No matter how I position that fan, there are hot spots and cold spots. The hot air in a bator is NOT the same as egg-to-chest contact provided by a hen. It is my opinion that believing a fan makes that much of a difference is not completely accurate. A GOOD fan, WELL placed, working properly might make a bator evenly heated. BUt it is often the interior shape of a bator that makes cold spots. People who build houses will tell you, square houses have cold corners and that is just the problem with a box. A bator with a poor fan, poorly placed is not going to make that big a difference. So do not place all your faith in a fan, they are not always the magic bullet. It will require fiddling and frequent checking to see if the fan is doing what you expect it to. You will need to use more than one thermometer, to get different readings from different spots in the bator before you can judge the success or failure of your fan.

After I had many chicks drown in their shells, I threw the water tray humidity instructions right out the window. While my hatches are not perfect, I get fewer drowned chicks. I am a dedicated dry hatcher and have found out over and over again, FAST chicks get out and SLOW chicks get stuck in their shell even if the incubator is dripping with humidity. After reading over and over that a dry bator causes stuckage I can say with 100 percent certainty that has NEVER BEEN MY EXPERIENCE. Speed of hatching determines getting stuck or not. Break an egg on your counter, smear it around. Leave it for a few hours. Wheter your house is dry or very humid, that egg is STICKY! That's just what happens no matter what the humidity.

Good luck wiht your hatches. There is more to say but I have been too long already. Do not get discouraged. Byt like many others have said, closer eggs, fresher, not shaken, might improve your chances even more than a fan.

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#105737 - 09/11/12 01:38 PM Re: still air V air bator [Re: Uno]
CJR Offline
Coop Master

Registered: 07/16/02
Posts: 8489
Loc: Montana
With Hovabator and later several Turn X bators, with fans, I learned to move the eggs positions during the weeks. Found one position always hatched earlier and a few, well developed, failed at the last days if left in the position opposite those earliest hatched. Quarter changes at several times in the round TurnX worked well!
I candled, maybe at least 6 x during the 21 days. (You may be able to identify breech positions that might need help hatching near the end. ) Could not tell any difference in hatch rate, no matter how often I opened the incubators. Hens get off the nest during the day, sometimes for quite a while. More care opening during the last few days, but if I color marked some chicks during the hatch day--it certainly did not make any difference to those still hatching.

Now, hatching fewer birds, I use only hens--they are still the easiest and you can candle, look (for mites or rare cracks) and the hen can't say "no". If she is angry and bites, I wear a glove and may take her chicks at hatch and raise them myself. However, I have enough sweet hens that are so dependable (2 are 10 years old, 2 more are 8 years old,several are 6) . and I seldom hatch their eggs.) AND they haven't a clue whether the eggs they set were theirs or even whether they are fertile. Some hens are so motherly, that I try to have the overprotective hens hatch about the same time and give the chicks to just one hen who is patient with my feeding, water, and changing bedding of their pens. Mine are bantams--5-6 eggs is a hatch. Right now one hens has 9 babies-she only hatched 3 special ones--=loves them all!
Yes, GOOD Luck and listen to Uno--she knows some good stuff! CJR

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#105759 - 09/12/12 09:40 PM Re: still air V air bator [Re: CJR]
Uno Offline
Lord of the Fowl

Registered: 08/26/05
Posts: 1280
Loc: Canada
CJR, hi and how are you keeping? Ready for winter in your neck of the woods?

Your kind words are high praise indeed. I will wear your words with pride. You put a smile on my face!

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