homemade incubator plans/how to

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if you want to go "on the cheep " and make an incubator, all you need is one of those styrofoam coolers, $1.99 some window screening, or regualr hardware cloth ,youll need a small frame to hold the screening , if thats what you use,(i used an old picture frame) and a Lightbulb, 40 watts,no bigger, a refirgetator appliance bulb works great for this, most are 40 watts some sort of small pan for holding water, i used the bottom of a cut off plastic milk jug, or and shallow dish a thermometer, not a digital one,, make sure its an extra one, because you will need to keep it in there during the entire incuabtion period

flip the cooler upside down, and cut a hole in the"bottom", just big enough to get you lightbulb holder through the cover of the cooler will be your egg hatching base, holding your small water dish, the cloth or screen suspended right above it

plug the lightbulb in, and make sure it works :)

you will now need to cut some small holes for ventilation and cooling on the sides of the cooler, about 5 holes on each long side,and 3 on the short sides, towards the bottom about 1/2 inch across,i simply use a steak knife as a "Drill" , and turn that into the holes, it makes them good enough size,

on the top of the sides, make 3 holes on the long sides, and for now leave the short sides alone, now turn on your bulb, and wait for about 20-45 minutes for your incubator to heat up, check the temperature,it should be 99-100 degrees you will need to make a few more holes most likely it will be way more than that.

start by making one hole on the top of each short end of the cooler, wait another 30 minutes and check your temperature again,, if it is still too warm , then make some more holes, waiting between each pair of holes around 30 minutes, if you make too many its ok, because you can cover them with duct tape.

once you have the temperature correct you can use your incubator for hatching eggs making sure to put water in the bottom of the tray every day , and turning the eggs at least 4 times a day (dont worry about the slight chilling that will occur as you turn the eggs, its just like if the mother had gotten off the nest to go get something to eat)

during the last 3 days of incubation, make sure to add a damp sponge or two to the bottom of the incubator , to help the eggs hatch. but do not turn them, other than to make sure the narrow end is up more than the fat end.

-- Beth Van Stiphout , in ND (willosnake@hotmail.com), April 08, 2002



-- Jay Blair in N. AL (jayblair678@yahoo.com), April 08, 2002.

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