Should You Add Water To Incubator When Incubating Poultry Eggs

Just recently I have had a number of emails asking if water should be added to the incubator during the hatch or if you should incubate guinea fowl, hen and quail eggs with a dry hatch.

hi, just a quick question, do you put water in your incubator all the way through or just at the end of incubation? i hatched 2 out of 13 bantoms and was told that because i put water in all the time then i drowned them, have you ever heard of that? thanks. Helen.

Hi Helen,

Thanks for your question. Yes I try to keep my incubator with some water in as this is what the instructions say. I have a hovabator incubator. I only keep a small amount in and then top it up when it gets to a few days before the hatch.

I have had a few enquiries about whether to put water in the incubator. Soem one else was advised with guinea fowl eggs to do a dry hatch which I assume means without water. I  have also read that quail do not need so much water until the last few days of the hatch.

I am sorry to hear you only got 2 bantam chicks.
Kind regards

Sara @ farmingfriends

I was just wondering what everyone’s thoughts were on a dry hatch and how much water they add to the incubator for different poultry and water fowl.

I have received this comment from Fred about dry hatching, “I have always dry hatched quail/pheasant/chickens /ducks due to watching others. to much moisture after hatching can make your birds very sick. while still in the egg itself i dont really see how moisture would benefit your chicks. if you do use water in the incubator you should discontinue at least a day before placing your chicks in an outside environment. Fred.”

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