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Input please on my improvised incubator.

Discussion in 'Tortoise Breeding' started by ZEROPILOT, Dec 1, 2016.

  1. ZEROPILOT

    ZEROPILOT Well-Known Member TFO Supporter Platinum Supporter

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    I suddenly have Redfoot eggs. I've found 14 but I could have LOADS more still to be excavated.
    I have a HOVERBATOR chicken egg incubator, but the settings for heat will not stabilize. And forever creeps hotter and hotter.
    So I "reverse engineered" an old closed chamber that I wasn't using and added 4" of Vermaculite That I mixed with water 50/50 and it is uniformly damp. I put my eggs in depressions in the mixture and my set-up has a pretty constant 85 degrees and 85% humidity. There is a standing bowl of water for humidity from evaporation.
    My concern is that there are water droplets forming on the glass and I'm worried about moldy eggs.
    I've wiped down the glass and there seems to be less of it now.
    This has only been set up an running for 3 days now.
    Anything that you would tweak?
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  2. Will

    Will Well-Known Member

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    Water droplets on the inside of exterior exposed surfaces indicate a difference between inside the chamber and outside the chamber temperature.

    Put a plastic overeager cup wholly inside the incubator with water in it and I'll bet you won't see the condensation. That will be your clue that the RH is not to high.
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  3. Markw84

    Markw84 Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    I always love your suggestions, Will, but not following this one... what is an "overeager cup"? And how would a cup inside the incubator stop condensation that was forming?
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  4. ZEROPILOT

    ZEROPILOT Well-Known Member TFO Supporter Platinum Supporter

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    This is it.
    I have a standing container of water. It's hooked to an airline and aquarium air stone, but it is not turned on.
    Already humid enough...

    20161129_155659.jpg
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  5. ZEROPILOT

    ZEROPILOT Well-Known Member TFO Supporter Platinum Supporter

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    Should i just swap it for a water bowl with more surface area?
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  6. cmac3

    cmac3 Well-Known Member

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    just get it right Ed. I wanna see a bunch of the "ED"foots running around. I might even need to get one.
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  7. Will

    Will Well-Known Member

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    Strike the word that seems out of place "overeager" and it makes sense per instruction.

    No this does not solve a problem it changes the observation made indicating a problem exists. You see condensation on the inner surface of an outer wall only indicates a temp differential between the inside and outside, it demonstrates that with the RH of the interior.

    However if some surface is not against the outside, like a cup in the middle of the incubator, then both sides of the cup wall (inside and outside) are both the same temp and the same RH, no condensation = not too much RH.

    Does that clear it up?
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  8. Markw84

    Markw84 Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    What RH do you keep in an incubator? Some say not that important as the eggs are in a container of their own with a mix of vermiculite and water. Most seem to use a closed Tupperware style container for the eggs with 1:1 vermiculite to water by weight. even with holes near the top sides of the container, that would consistently maintain 100% RH by my actual measurements. So what do you find, and prefer? Do you monitor the humidity in the incubator and/or egg container?
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  9. Yvonne G

    Yvonne G Old Timer TFO Admin 5 Year Member Platinum Supporter

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    You know what? I really, really like this idea. I like being able to see the eggs without having to open the lid of the incubator. What are you using for a heat source, a CHE on a thermostat?
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  10. cmac3

    cmac3 Well-Known Member

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    This how I did some of my box turtles eggs and worked get, with CHE on thermostat.
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  11. ZEROPILOT

    ZEROPILOT Well-Known Member TFO Supporter Platinum Supporter

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    Yes
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  12. ZEROPILOT

    ZEROPILOT Well-Known Member TFO Supporter Platinum Supporter

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    No just that florescent and a 15 watt 18" heat rope underneath the tank. Taped on and with feet on the tank to raise it up for cooling.. Same as I had for my baby Redfoots. With moist substrate the heat ropes work and last forever.
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  13. Will

    Will Well-Known Member

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    Chris Estep (sp) (Toucan Jungle) incubates eastern leopard eggs in a vision cage much the same way. At least in as much as I understood the caption with an image that he posted once - somewhere.
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  14. Millerlite

    Millerlite Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    Get plastic put it above the eggs like a false ceiling and then put weight toward the middle where the cupnis. The drops will roll back into the cup. Don't make it too close but it might work And keep the dorpplets from droping on your eggs

    Kyle
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  15. ZEROPILOT

    ZEROPILOT Well-Known Member TFO Supporter Platinum Supporter

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    Thanks Kyle.
    But the droplets are almost all on the side glass and not on the top plexiglass.
    The humidity is holding at 85 still.
    None of them look like they are chalking or getting dark at all. Still semi opaque and purplish.
    Maybe another round of duds?
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  16. Anyfoot

    Anyfoot Well-Known Member

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    They can take weeks to chalk, if my memory serves me right i believe @cdmay once said up to 5 wks.
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  17. ZEROPILOT

    ZEROPILOT Well-Known Member TFO Supporter Platinum Supporter

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    When should I see chalking?
    When should I be able to see anything by candling?
    They still look the same.
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  18. ZEROPILOT

    ZEROPILOT Well-Known Member TFO Supporter Platinum Supporter

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    Nevermind.:rolleyes:
  19. Anyfoot

    Anyfoot Well-Known Member

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    Does this mean you can see something?
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  20. ZEROPILOT

    ZEROPILOT Well-Known Member TFO Supporter Platinum Supporter

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    No. That you'd already answered the part about how long until chalking happens.
    In a CAMP KEENAN video, he states that even a one or two day old ebryo can be damaged if you rotate an egg. (An egg layed 1 or 2 days ago)
    I had also thought that that would happen much further along into the development.
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