Cardboard Egg Flats for incubation?

Texastravis

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Anyone here use or have used egg flats for incubation? This is mainly just for discussion. I have used vermiculite successfully for years but was thinking that putting a cardboard egg flat ontop of the vermiculite would be cleaner, less likely for hatchlings to eat vermiculite, a bit more organized, could probably fit more eggs in a container, etc. You could still put vermiculite with water (or other media) unerneath the egg flat and pop a lid on. May give this a try for fun.
 

ZenHerper

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For dry-incubated eggs, this would work...but you have to be very certain that the eggs will not shift from whatever orientation you set them in. Substrate more easily assures that eggs don't shift or roll (and drown) if the incubator or tray is bumped.
 

Tom

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Anyone here use or have used egg flats for incubation? This is mainly just for discussion. I have used vermiculite successfully for years but was thinking that putting a cardboard egg flat ontop of the vermiculite would be cleaner, less likely for hatchlings to eat vermiculite, a bit more organized, could probably fit more eggs in a container, etc. You could still put vermiculite with water (or other media) unerneath the egg flat and pop a lid on. May give this a try for fun.
In properly damp media, the egg flats will soak up the water and turn to mush.

Also, you won't fit more eggs into a container. The individual egg spots takes up more room then putting the eggs side by side.

Eating vermiculite is not a problem as long as you don't leave the babies in the incubation box for a week after hatching, and even then, it probably won't kill them. I remove my hatchlings to a brooder box as soon as they exit their shells. They get rinsed, soaked, and place in a box with a varied of greens as soon as I see them out of their shell.

Which reminds me... I have three clutches hatching right now that I have to go check. :)
 
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Texastravis

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In properly damp media, the egg flats will soak up the water and turn to mush.

Also, you won't fit more eggs into a container. The individual egg spots takes up more room then putting the eggs side by side.

Eating vermiculite is not a problem as long as you don't leave the babies in the incubation box for a week after hatching, and even then, it probably won't kill them. I remove my hatchlings to a brooder box as soon as they exit their shells. They get rinsed, soaked, and place in a box with a varied of greens as soon as I see them out of their shell.

Which reminds me... I have three clutches hatching right now that I have to go check. :)
Hmm, they may turn to mush, I guess it could be media less with water containers in the incubator but I digress. I may give it a try for fun one day just to see how it goes.

For whatever reason I have always separated my eggs from touching. This makes it easier for me to push the eggs half way into the media so that no eggs potentially touch the lid or get damaged by some of the plastic braces that stick out on some brand plastic lids. The closer the eggs are to one another the less I can press them in it seems. Also, when a tortoise hatches, sometimes they climb all around the eggs rotating other eggs before I get them removed which worries me since some eggs hatch weeks after the first hatchling. I always try to quickly rotate them back hoping nothing got hurt. I imagine if a bunch of eggs were crammed into a container touching each other, a hatchling could really start rotating eggs. Tom, you had any issue with eggs crammed together touching? See attached photo of my typical separation. I put 20 eggs in these containers which means some sulcata females get multiple bins. I never have a space issue in the incubator so it has not bothered me.
 

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Tom

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Tom, you had any issue with eggs crammed together touching?
I don't mind them touching. They would be in the wild. I try to cram as many into each shoe box as I can. I prefer shoe boxes to the type of box you are using because they are a little deeper and I don't have to worry about the plastic braces you mentioned. I've never had any trouble with new hatchlings rotating the other eggs. I also watch for pips, and then check every few hours so that I can remove the new hatching from the incubation box, soak it, and put it in a brooder shoe box.
IMG_3643.jpg
 

Texastravis

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I don't mind them touching. They would be in the wild. I try to cram as many into each shoe box as I can. I prefer shoe boxes to the type of box you are using because they are a little deeper and I don't have to worry about the plastic braces you mentioned. I've never had any trouble with new hatchlings rotating the other eggs. I also watch for pips, and then check every few hours so that I can remove the new hatching from the incubation box, soak it, and put it in a brooder shoe box.
View attachment 323409

Yeah, I may use less vermiculite and do something more similar to this for the bigger clutches. I agree they touch in the wild I just try to prevent bad eggs from touching good eggs I suppose. I do like these deep ones but mine stack very nicely allowing me to fit more clutches in the incubator and since they are bigger foot print, they work well for raising hatchlings in first few months on paper towels.
 

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