Do you need an incubator for quail at home?
The quail incubator is a thermostatic box with humidity regulation. It is important during the hatching period to ensure the stability of the incubation regime, control of the possibility of egg overturn with the desired frequency. You can buy or build an incubator with your own hands..
Requirements for incubating quail at home
Eggs are laid in the incubator fresh, laid within a week. To increase the yield of chicks, the parent stock is kept separately. For 30 minutes, females are alternately planted in a cage with 3-4 males for fertilization. This will allow you to get a brood up to 80% of the bookmark..
The eggs are medium-sized, without cracks, with clean shells. Before laying, the eggs are examined on an ovoscope in order to make sure that the embryo is present. The incubator is installed in a warm, dry room..
For the development of embryos, certain conditions are needed:
- For two days in the incubator, the temperature is maintained at 37.7 degrees, the humidity is 60-70%, the eggs are not turned.
- Including the fifteenth day, the eggs are turned over after 2 hours to prevent the embryo from sticking to the shell..
- Before hatching eggs for 2 days, the temperature should be reduced to 37.50, the humidity should be maintained at 90%, periodically irrigating the surface of the eggs from a spray bottle.
The development of the chick until the hatching is 17 days. The hatched chicks should dry in the incubator for 24 hours.
The embryo remains viable even with a short-term absence of heating. In this case, the eggs are removed from the incubator and cooled to 15-18 degrees. In the future, the incubation of quails can be continued, but the release date of the chicks will shift..
The humidity in the chamber is maintained by means of installed blocks with water and adjustable ventilation ducts. The temperature is set automatically or manually using an accurate thermometer, not room temperature. To turn the eggs without opening the chamber of the quail incubator, the nets with eggs are turned left and right by 450 using the lever brought out. Eggs in the net are placed vertically, blunt end up.
A yield of 75% of the loaded material is considered normal. The remaining eggs may be unfertilized or “asleep”.
The design of prefabricated quail incubators can have automated egg turning, precise regulation of modes. But usually such devices are designed for stable power supply. No backup battery is provided. Purchased incubators for quails are universal, you can hatch chickens and goslings in them, changing the nets and operating mode. However, the cameras in the devices allow laying 100-300 eggs. An incubator is expensive. Therefore, more often in a rural courtyard, you can see a do-it-yourself quail incubator at work..
The principles of building a homemade incubator
A lot of thermostat designs made by craftsmen, with drawings and step-by-step instructions, can be found in reference books and on websites. Depending on the material at hand, the number of eggs in the set, the backup power source, it is not difficult to choose a suitable design.
A wooden box of the right size is selected. In order to maintain a stable temperature and humidity inside, you need to make thermal insulation of the walls. Outside, the walls can be overlaid with expanded polystyrene plates, roll insulation, upholstered with plywood on top. Finish the inner surface so that the cavity can be washed and disinfected.
An old refrigerator is perfect for making an incubator for quails. Sufficient chamber volume makes it possible to obtain a robust functional device.
To monitor the state of the eggs, place a glass on top, drill several holes for ventilation of the chamber. To install nets with eggs, make stops and a sealed hatch. To create the required humidity, install an evaporator at the bottom of the chamber. The nets with eggs should be higher so that the quail does not drown in the bath.
For uniform heating of all eggs, an internal fan is installed on the upper and lower grid, which is switched on periodically. There should be enough air space in the chamber for turning the egg nets by 450 and for handling the eggs. Above floor level, the tray with eggs should be at least 10 cm. To the ceiling or upper sight glass, the distance is calculated depending on the heating used. If these are 40 W bulbs, then the distance from them to the grid should be at least 10 cm.The grids can be turned over in manual and automatic mode.
Egg trays can be made by pulling nylon fishing line or other material over the foam frame. The main condition is that the laid eggs do not roll when the tray is turned over, the hatched chicks should not fall into the cells.
Usually, the incubation of quails at home is carried out using the mains supply. For emergencies, a battery connection must be provided. To control the temperature in the chamber, you need to buy a mercury thermometer, which is used to monitor the operation of temperature sensors. Room thermometers are not accurate enough. The thermometer is positioned so that it does not touch the shell. Humidity is measured with a psychrometer.
Breeding quail in an incubator at home is easier than other breeds of birds. Chicks hatch more viable, dry in the incubator before being removed within 24-48 hours. It is important during the period when babies are emerging from the eggs to create a fog in the chamber with a fine spray, so that the shell is easier to separate when it is destroyed by its beak..
The incubator should be installed at an elevated position. During the period of hatching, there should be no sharp shocks or noise in the room. Surprisingly, embryos can get scared and freeze in development..
The hatching of quails in an incubator at home will reduce the cost of purchasing young animals when feeding livestock for meat. Uncomplicated device to reduce costs, will allow you to breed your own healthy flock.