Water fowl and poultry can be great birds to keep for numerous reasons but it all starts with the egg. (No chicken and egg questions please!!) Incubation is an important part of the process so making sure you get this right is paramount.
First thing is the amount of eggs you intend to hatch at any one time. Not all eggs will hatch so maybe slightly over estimate and ensure your incubator is large enough for the amount of eggs you intend to hatch.
Still or circulated air incubators?
Circulated air incubators basically mean that a fan is installed in order to distribute the air and temperature evenly within the incubator. In a still air incubator the temperature is stratified, meaning warmer near the top of the incubator and cooler towards the bottom. Remember, the temperature in the instructions of a still air incubator will often be around 1.5°C higher than a circulated air because the temperature is measured level with the top of the eggs rather than the middle of the eggs as with a circulated incubator.
Manual or Automatic turn?
If the eggs are not turned the simply won’t hatch! Eggs must be turned at least 3 times daily with the exception of the last 2 days before they hatch when then turning is not required. If you’re not able to turn manually then an automatic turner is a must.
All incubators have options of adding water either manually or by an automatic means if supplied. However more chicks die inside the shell from high humidity than low humidity. At time of hatching the internal membrane should be crisp and dry by the time the chick tried to peck its way out.