Hatching Eggs – A Step By Step Guide To The Whole Procedure

The process of hatching eggs can be a fruitful experience for those who work in poultry farms; poultry farm owners, science classes and 4-5 club members. In today’s world, the hatched eggs are artificially incubated and this requires a person who can monitor the environment inside the incubator. It is done in order to ensure that eggs receive the correct heat, air and moisture to hatch successfully. No incubator gives 100 percent efficiency. This is an important point that should be kept in mind while incubating the eggs. To make up for the less efficiency of the incubator, be prepared for a 5-10 % loss for your flock that can occur after hatching. This happens because the eggs grow to maturity. Also it is advisable to order a few extra eggs. 50-85% hatching rate can be expected by an incubator employing a good regulation of temperature as well as, humidity, egg turning, and ventilation.

Necessary precautions before starting the process:

Before beginning with the process of hatching eggs, it is considered a good practice to wash your hands thoroughly and dry them to prevent the growth of bacteria, fungi and other microbes that may harm the eggs. For prevention of diseases and health reasons, it's best to get all the eggs from one source. If you buy the eggs from a local market but cannot get the number you want in a single day then try not to hold the eggs for a longer duration than three days before keeping them for hatching.

The actual procedure:

Set the incubator to a working temperature and check your user’s manual. Once the temperature is stabilized, allow all the stored hatching eggs to warm gradually to room temperature before putting them in the incubator.

Special Tip: Care needs to be taken for ventilation, temperature and humidity. Its very important to remember that the growing chicks are living organisms that exchange oxygen and carbon dioxide through the shell during the incubation process. To help the incubator control the egg environment, it should be kept in a room free from drafts, where the room temperature remains constant. Addition of water to the incubator helps in monitoring humidity, depending on the species being hatched.

The eggs must be turned over from time to time, while in the incubator to prevent the embryo from sticking to the shell. If your incubator is not rendered with the optional mechanical turner, you must turn them manually, by hand.

Each species of poultry require different incubation time. Ducks and geese take longer time to hatch than Quail, which hatches in a very short duration.

Once the eggs begin to hatch, the baby chicks will need to be transferred to a place where they can be given proper care - this should be set-up ahead of time.

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