Hatching Chicken & Duck Eggs|
Types of Poultry Incubators: GQF, Miller, and Farm Innovators
(Chick-Bator, Hova-Bator, Sportsman)
Chick-Bator (top photo in this section) from GQF Manufacturing holds 3 chicken
eggs or 2 duck eggs. It is about $20.
GQF Manufacturing sells the Hova-Bator Still-Air Incubator (second photo in this section). It holds 42 chicken or duck eggs. It costs around
$60. A Hova-Bator Circulated-Air Incubator is about $100. You get a better
hatch rate with the circulated air model.
The Genesis Hova-Bator holds 50 chicken or duck eggs. It has digital temperature and humidity displays. It is 12 volt but can be used with 110 volt. It is circulated air. It sells for $132.
You can get an automatic egg turner that works in
these for $50. That way you don't have to turn the eggs manually 3-4 times
For professional quality GQF sells the 1202E Classic Sportsman for $650
(third photo in this section). It has an automatic egg turner. It holds
270 chicken eggs or 198 duck eggs. It has a very good hatch rate.
Miller Manufacturing (Little Giant)
Little Giant (fourth photo in this section) sells a still-air incubator
for around $60 (Models 9200, 9300). It has a digital temperature and humidity
display. It holds 41 chicken or duck eggs.
They also sell the Little Giant incubator with a fan to circulate the air.
Same as the above. Sells for $75.
They sell an automatic egg turner for $50. They are similar to the Hova-bator.
Farm Innovators sells the Pro Series Model 4200 incubator (fifth photo in
this section) that is a circulated-air incubator with automatic turning
tray for $120. It has a thermometer and humidity guage. It holds 41 eggs.
It is similar to the Hova-Bator.
Their Model 2200 incubator is the same as Model 4200 except it does not
have an egg turner. It sells for $85.
For more money they sell incubators similar to the above that have digital
display of temperature and humidity, factory temperature pre-set, and temperature
General about Hova-Bator, Little Giant and Farm Innovators
To save money you can get a computer fan or other small fan, and add it
to a still-air incubator. Though a fan made for an incubator works better.
If you go with Hova-Bator, Little Giant or Farm Innovators, it is important
that the room they are in stays at a stable temperature. If the room temperature
changes a lot, it is harder for them to maintain the correct temperature.
It is easier to regulate the temperature in an incubator that is full of
eggs. The Brinsea does a better job of maintaining temperature and humidity.
"I will be using a Hova-bator Still Air with an electric egg turner. My first hatch of the year was in a Little Giant Incubator Digital Still Air and was terrible. I discovered there was a 5 degree variation in temperature at egg level, I think because it is deeper than the Hova-bator. I added the fan kit and so far it's been better, I have goose and duck eggs in it right now." -Rick, Oblong, Illinois
Types of Poultry Incubators: Brinsea
Brinsea sells the Mini Eco (holds 10 chicken eggs or 8 duck eggs, $100,
first photo in this section). It has fan-assisted circulated air, and a
glass thermometer. There is no automatic egg turning.
It sells the Mini Advance Incubator ($200) and the Mini Advance
EX Incubator ($400). The Mini Advance models have fan-assisted circulated
air, automatic egg turning, egg cooling, and digital thermometer. They both
hold 7 chicken or duck eggs. The Mini Advance EX has automatic humidity
control and humidity guage. The first photo is a Mini Advance taken by Sandra
in Durham, North Carolina.
The third photo in this group of incubators is a 7-egg Brinsea Advance
incubator with Ancona duck eggs and 1 duckling in it. The photo is from
Tim and Jane in Kentucky.
"I have two incubators. The Brinsea Mini Advance
and the Brinsea Mini Advance ll. I have used the Advance since 2014 and
the Advance ll since 2017. I have found both to be good. They only hold
7 eggs, and the only big difference between them is that the Advance ll
allows me to add water to the water pot from the outside so it lessens the
amount of times I lift the top off." -Emily, Acton, Massachusetts
Brinsea Octagon Eco Incubators
Brinsea sells the Octagon-20 Eco Incubator for $200. It is the third
photo in this section. It has fan-assisted air circulation, automatic temperature
control, and a glass thermometer. It holds 24 chicken eggs. You can add
automatic egg turning for $90.
The Octagon-40 Eco Incubator retails for $470. It has fan-assisted
air circulation, automatic temperature control, automatic egg turning, and
a glass thermometer. It holds 48 eggs.
Brinsea Octagon Advance Incubators
They have the Octagon-20 Advance Incubator for $400 and the Octagon-40
Advance for $600. They both have fan-assisted air circulation, egg turning,
egg cooling, automatic temperature control, and digital temperature/humidity
display. The 20 holds 24 chicken eggs, and the 40 holds 48 eggs.
The fifth photo in this section is the Octagon-20 with my Dominique eggs.
Brinsea Octagon Advance EX Incubators
They sell the Octagon-20 Advance EX incubator for $560 and the Octogon-40
Advance Ex incubator that is $700. They are the same as the Octagon
Advance above except they have automatic humidity control. The Octagon-20
(sixth photo) holds 20 chicken eggs, and the Octagon-40 holds 32-40 eggs.
"We are using an Octagon 40 Advance EX digital
incubator with humidity pump from Brinsea, basically a set-it and forget-it
model. It is a little bit spendy but there is no hassle with egg turning
or the right humidity. You tell it what to do and the machine does the rest.
I haven't seen a real difference in the hatching rate to the still-air incubator
we used before, but it eliminates the stress of constantly checking temperature
and humidity." -Anja, Bend, Oregon
The photo with the 2 incubators is the Brinsea Maxi II. Krista-Lea in Port Jefferson, New York took the picture.
Brinsea Cabinet Incubators
Brinsea sells Ova-Easy cabinet incubators holding 96 to 576 chicken
eggs for $1000 to $2000. They are fully automatic. It is the last photo
in this section.
All of these prices are Brinsea's suggested prices. You may be able to get
a better price. Check out reviews at Amazon before you buy.
All Brinsea incubators are factory set at 99.5 degrees. Brinsea incubators
are higher quality (and price) with a better hatch rate than the Hova-Bator
or Little Giant. It is good if you have valuable eggs. If you are going
to hatch a lot of eggs, they are worth the money.
"The incubator had 24 Dominique eggs, and we now have 17 healthy thriving chicks. I did use the cooling feature this time as per the Brinsea instructions. Our whole family has enjoyed this so much. I have been telling people about your farm and what a great experience it has been. Our older batch of chicks from your farm are great.....healthy and adventurous." -Kate, Weaverville, North Carolina
Types of Poultry Incubators: R-Com, Homemade
R-Com Bird Incubators are high quality. They range from $150 to over $1000.
The R-Com Mini Digital Incubator holds 3 eggs. It has automatic temperature
and automatic turning. It is programmable. It sells for $90.
The R-Com Mini Digital with EZ-Scope includes an observation candler and
the Mini-Pro egg incubator with automatic temperature, humidity control,
and automatic turning. It holds 3 eggs. It is around $150.
The R-Com King Suro-20 incubator has automatic controlled temperature, humidity
and cradle egg turning. It holds 24 eggs. It is around $300. It is the first
photo in this section.
eBay, Building Your Own Incubator, Broody Hen
You may find some of the used expensive ones on eBay at a price you can
afford. You can also build
your own incubator.
The absolute very best incubator is a broody hen! Generally speaking, Bantam
(Bantie) hens go broody more often than standard-size chickens. I sell Bantam
eggs for hatching.
Types of Poultry Incubators: Magicfly
Magicfly sells the Digital Egg Incubator with egg turner that holds 10 eggs.
It is $75. It has an LED temperature display. Easy to use.
"I used the Magicfly Digital Egg Incubator with
Egg Turner Poultry Hatch, model JANOEL12. It worked really well and was
easy to use. I didn't completely trust the thermometer. So I put a small
digital themometer inside. It also tracked the humidity. I did have to raise
and lower the tempature setting to keep it steady but it was easy because
the setting allows a 10th of a degree at a time. I needed to add a little
water each day to maintain the proper humidity, and I could do so by inserting
a turkey baster into a small whole in the top of the incubator. I didn't
open the incubator once until 3 days prior to hatching when I removed the
egg rotator. I would definitely recommend this incubator for someone who
has just a few eggs to hatch." -Rebecca, Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania
Guide to Better Hatching" Book By
Janet Stromberg. 120 pages, 2012. Shipping is $2.95. Have great hatches.
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