Multiple failed attempts at egg hatching

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Kalseru

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I have a couple of stimsons that have bred several times now. 3x times I left the eggs with the mother in the nest she made in the main cage, but even with damp spagnum moss they either dried out (with only 2x surviving one year) or last year ants moved in and drilled into the eggs (devestating). So this year I made the decision to buy an incubator and try removing them from her. The incubator has been set at 29-31C and has a fan on one side with water in the base below a mesh tray which the eggs sit on. I noticed the humidity was not very good so added a wet cloth (not touching eggs) to increase humidity as everything I read say to get it 80%+ . However yesterday and today the eggs have gone really dry despite the humidity and I think I only have 3 left of 14 with any red blood vessels (and not looking very good). It seems the fan in the incubator is drying the eggs rather than the water.

What advice do other successful Stimson breeders have - what should I do for next year? Have I set the temp too high? I don't want to keep failing like this so any advice appreciated. I'm based in Perth and eggs usually laid November.
 

Bluetongue1

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@Kalseru. If you genuinely want help then you need to provide more details than you have done in your opening post. Sdaji has been successfully breeding stimmies for two decades, yet you have not answered his simple, straight-forward question seeking more information. He can most certainly help you, but he is not a mind reader. Information such as the type and size of incubator you purchased, and some clear photos if it was a DIY job, would certainly help, plus where it was kept and how exactly you utilised it. These are the sorts of details experienced breeders need to know in order to put you on the path to success.

Just out of my curiosity, you talked about your maternal brooding efforts yet made no mention of using a laying box. Did you provide one?

One point I will make here is in relation your comment on the fan. Only larger incubators require a fan. This is solely to keep the warmed air evenly distributed so that thermal stratification does not occur. It only requires a very gentle air flow and that is why fans out of old laptop computers are a favoured choice. Depending on the size of the incubator, a single fan positioned in a top corner of the ceiling is all that is required.
 

Barry

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I tried the maternal with sphagnum moss 0/13 , didn’t work for me in breeding box . Picked up an incubator off a breeder, clutch of 10 have 7 hatchies, could have been more if I had been on hand to cut the other 3 eggs. I used a bpa free snap lock box, with glad wrapped top inside incubator. Aired the box out every week.Lost power for 4 hrs thought they were all buggered. 7 hatchies, pretty happy with the results to be honest.
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Are you using some egg crate or similar to keep the eggs out of the moisture?
 

Kalseru

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Sorry for not replying earlier, I didnt realise I wouldn't get notifications if someone replied.
I bought an egg incubator on Kogan (built for chicken eggs) and removed the egg turner capsules, replacing them with my microwave steaming tray (plastic with holes) and then just had the eggs on the tray. I didn't realise in such a small incubator I should have them in sealed containers as I thought they need to get the extra humidity in there from the surroundings. Water sits in channels at the base of the incubator and then it has a plastic lid that sits on top. I tried to put a wet cloth next to the eggs where the fan blows on the sides but it didn't work.

To answer Bluetongue1 it was kept in my kitchen on the laminate bench. I realised that even with the humidity, the eggs were still sinking so then I tried to put them in a plastic takeaway container with holes in the lid but it was probably too late.

They are in two batches because when she laid, I wasn't home and so she had only wrapped around the left bunch, leaving the right ones out in the cold. It was a stormy unusually cold night. I expected the right wouldn't survive but some looked ok.

When doing maternal incubation I did not move her from her usual cage (a glass fronted tv cabinet kept under our southern facing (well shafded) patio. In side they only have a heat rock and waterbowl though when she was gravid I put in the moss and kept it moist. I didn't try a brooding box.

I will likely try doing a brooding box indoors next time and leave them with her or try and fix this incubator so it works or use the parts to build one.
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Herpetology

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Easier to just build one using a old wine fridge mate

1x wine fridge
1x heat cord
1x drill
1x thermostat
Possibly a pc fan aswell

chicken eggs are vastly different to reptile eggs, they need 100% humidity at 30-32c 24/7 with 0
movement (or they die)

to be honest those eggs don’t look terribly bad, they naturally start to cave in over time but it looks like they came into contact with water underneath??
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