Thursday, September 3, 2009

Today is DAY 14 which means: LOCKDOWN!!! I turned the eggies for the last time this morning.

My original plan, to raise the relative humidity to 65% for hatching (previously between 30-45% for growing), was to put a small dish with a sponge UNDER the screen that the eggs are sitting on. I realized that it's not going to take much to raise the humidity though...and I didn't want to risk breaking a delicate egg by moving them to put the tray in. So, I made room and took out the dud eggs I'd previously marked. 5 duds. 17 eggs remain. I cut a sponge to fit snugly inside a 1/8 cup measuring cup and put that in. I'm depositing teaspoons of warm water on it through a vent hole with a condiment squirty bottle until it's where I need it. Now I don't have to open the bator to raise the humidity. And the snug sponge will prevent silly chickies from drowning themselves in any water that sits in the bottom of the measuring cup.

The humidity is holding steady. I'm aiming for anywhere between 60-70% humidity so that the chickies don't get shrinkwrapped in their membranes. As they hatch the humidity will go up because of their added moisture that was previously contained in the shell. LOL.

I also put our biggest egg right next to our smallest egg and took a pic. The small one is to the right of the big one, both above the white egg. The small one is just under 1" long. The big one is almost 2" long. The pic doesn't do it justice either because of the angle the eggs are sitting at. The difference is funny and I hope that they both hatch.

YAY! Wish us luck! I have friends who say that they start getting pips on day 15...but others who don't hatch before day 18. So it seems there is a larger window for healthy hatching than with chickens. Woot...that's in our favour! A friend online who has many hundred coturnix says that "quail hatch dispite our best efforts". LOL!!

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