Incubating Chicken Eggs - How to Hatch Chicken Eggs
Hatching Chicken Eggs
Gone are the days when hatching chicken eggs meant getting a hen to sit on the eggs. Today, you can achieve the same result by incubating chicken eggs. Using an incubator to hatch eggs requires a great deal of resilient effort if you are to succeed.
There is a wide variety of incubator brands and models that you can choose from. The smaller ones are capable of handling and hatching 2 to 3 eggs at a time whereas the large industrial incubators can hatch up to 100 chicks at a go. In the context of this wide disparity, choosing an incubator that is right for you must be the first and probably most important step to hatching chicken eggs. You must clearly determine the number of eggs you would like to hatch so that you do not buy an incubator with too much or too little capacity.
The other important consideration when hatching chicken eggs with an incubator is to only select the highest quality of eggs available. The quality of the eggs is key as it can very well determine the success or failure in the incubation and hatching process.
With the eggs ready, one would assume that the next step is to simply open the incubator place the eggs inside and turn it on. However, it is important to note that not all incubators are operated in identical way so you have to check the operating manual of the incubator just to be sure that you are doing everything required.
That said, if you are using a particular incubator for the first time, it would be a good idea to switch on the incubator way before you place the eggs inside. This can range from two days to a week. Doing this will allow you to assess the conditions within the incubator to confirm that the conditions are ideal for hatching chicken eggs.
One such parameter that you would be looking at is the temperature, which for should be between 99.5 to 103 degrees. You can place a thermometer inside the incubator to confirm that whatever settings you specifiy on the incubator's controls matches the actual conditions on the inside of the incubator. Based on this information, you can then make the necessary adjustments that you require in order to incubate chicken eggs.
Once you place the eggs inside, they must not remain stationary. The eggs must be turned at least once but ideally three times daily in order to avoid having deformed chicks or ending up with eggs that will not hatch. It can be difficult for you to keep track of which side you have turned the eggs so put small markings on each egg such as zeros or crosses that will aid you in this.
Incubating chicken eggs requires a hygienic environment. So you should remove any cracked or rotten eggs from the incubator immediately when you notice them. There should not be too much heat or too little moisture just before the time of hatching as both these factors might cause the shell to harden thus making it hard for the chick to break free.
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