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Incubator designs

Discussion in 'Breeding' started by Marcus B, Jan 28, 2017.

  1. Marcus B

    Marcus B Sub-Adult Turtle

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    I would be really interested in some incubator designs beyond the very basic DIY idea of a foam box and an aquarium heater in water (which is what I am currently using). I have a few basic descriptions and photos of different incubators, but I am after design details, including where to source the thermostat controller please.

    Also things like ventilation. The one in the care guide has fan. Does this actually vent the incubator, or circulate the air (if just for circulation then I assume there must be other vents)? Another design that I have a photo of, just has vents at the bottom, but may have more at the top that are not clearly visible as such. A fan for air circulation is mentioned as an extra. My current set up just has vents at the top and so I am bit concerned about dead air. Is it enough to open it up more once a day or should I just create more vent holes lower down?

    If I can source the materials, then I could possible get it put together by my brother-in-law, to ensure it is electrically safe.
     
  2. Aussiepride83

    Aussiepride83 Super Moderator
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    Hi mate, I have the incubator of Craig's from the care guide and another one he designed, both Willow esky's with lights, digital thermostat and fans to circulate the air within the incubator for even distribution. If you'd like more photos, I can take some of them for you. As for the materials, you'll have to ask Craig where to get them from and how much it costs etc.
     
  3. Marcus B

    Marcus B Sub-Adult Turtle

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    Yes please Kev.

    I have been looking at thermostats on line and there seems to be a huge range of ones for herp and aquarium use. It would be good to know which ones others have found to be reliable.
     
  4. Aussiepride83

    Aussiepride83 Super Moderator
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    I hope these are of any use to you.
    20170128_202604.jpg

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    Don't mind the 26 Degree setting, this incubator is currently keeping my Bird eating spiders warm as I've no turtle eggs to currently incubate. LOL
    [​IMG]
    The temp is set at 28 degrees C for incubating turtle eggs.
    [​IMG]

    I can guarantee this design works like a charm!

    If you want photos of the larger one, I can take them tomorrow, it's out in my garage.
     
  5. Marcus B

    Marcus B Sub-Adult Turtle

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    Thanks Kev. That size should be fine, as I am not likely to have a lot of eggs to deal with.
    Are there two separate thermostats on this one (the black dial and the digital one), or is one of them something else (or two parts of the one thermostat)?
    What is the white object next to the black controller?
     
  6. AMAZING AMAZON

    AMAZING AMAZON Adult Turtle
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    I find a pulse or dimming thermostat in conjunction with heat cord holds more consistent temps
    Paul
     
  7. Aussiepride83

    Aussiepride83 Super Moderator
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    Yes mate, 2 separate thermostats. Something to do with a fail safe system, it disengages in the event of a malfunction to avoid cooking the eggs. I'll tag @Craig here as he'll be able to give you a proper explanation of how it works. :)
     
  8. Craig

    Craig Administrator
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    With incubating turtle eggs there was some research done and there needs to be a hysteresis of 1°- 2° allowing for fluctuation of a degree or two in temperature. The hysteresis means that if you set your temperature to 28° and have a one degree hysteresis, the temperature will heat until it is 28.5° and then switch off. It will then cool to 27.5° giving you a 1° hysteresis with the average temperature being 28°. The research showed that turtles that hatch where a temperature doesn't fluctuate are actually weaker and some do not survive. This is understandable as turtles do not incubate their eggs like snakes do. Snakes can vibrate producing heat energy to try to raise the temperature of the eggs if they cool.

    Turtles are much better not using a dimming thermostat and Paul, I really apologise for disagreeing with you. In nature the eggs cool a degree or two overnight when the sun goes down.
    --- Double Post Merged, Jan 30, 2017, Original Post Date: Jan 30, 2017 ---
    The lae MTR4 is an electronic thermostat. It is possible for any electronic thermostat to jump above the set temperature in the event of a 'brown out' or 'black out' or even power surge. In my whole 40+ years of incubating eggs this only happened to me once and it was caused by a power surge. The 'THAT 040' mechanical thermostat is set 2° above the digital thermostat set temperature of 28°. If it ever reaches 30° the THAT 040 will cut the power to the lae MTR4, thus resetting the system. When the incubator cools down the power is restored and the digital thermostat will continue to control the temperature of the incubator.

    For the sake of an extra $80 the THAT040 is definitely worth it!
     
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  9. Aussiepride83

    Aussiepride83 Super Moderator
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    Thanks for explaining that Craig.
     
  10. Craig

    Craig Administrator
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    You're welcome mate. I believe the temperature research was done by a Dr. Andy Highfield. A world renowned expert in freshwater turtle biology.
    --- Double Post Merged, Jan 30, 2017, Original Post Date: Jan 30, 2017 ---
    picmasterbator1.jpg
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    picmasterbator2.jpg
     
  11. Aussiepride83

    Aussiepride83 Super Moderator
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    The "Master-Bater" Lol :laugh:
     
  12. tigger

    tigger Egg

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    If you want a larger system I use an old fridge shell which holds temp perfectly. I can incubate 300 eggs easy. The more substrate in the fridge the more stable she stays. Let me know if you want any more info. Tigger
     
    #12 tigger, Feb 6, 2017
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 6, 2017
  13. Craig

    Craig Administrator
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    Hey mate, I've actually incubated over 300 eggs in the large incubator. I have also always been a believer of the proverb
    'Don't put all your eggs in one basket'.

    And yes, that's why I had 4 incubators. I agree with you the more containers of eggs in the incubator the more stable the temperature was. However you need a hysteresis of 1°- 2° which actually is what they get in the wild.
     
  14. Rodney

    Rodney Hatchling Turtle

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    Hi.

    Does the temperature at which AFT's are incubated at affect/ determine the hatchlings gender?
     
  15. Craig

    Craig Administrator
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    Hi Rodney, the only Australian freshwater turtle species that has temperature sex determined eggs is Carettochelys insculpta, the Pig-nosed turtle.
     
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  16. Rodney

    Rodney Hatchling Turtle

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    Thanks Craig.