Some incubator manufacturers seem to disregard the goal of temperature uniformity as old fashioned and out of step with today’s thinking. This may be because they find it very hard to achieve due to the design limitations of their own equipment?
At EmTech we firmly believe that by providing every single egg with the precise required temperature throughout the entire incubator egg mass it will have the greatest beneficial effect on the developing embryo and ultimately on chick quality. Yes, of course, other elements are important and have an important role to play at various stages throughout the incubation process but, first and foremost, temperature will dictate and wield the greatest influence on hatch and post hatch performance.
There are many debates today regarding the merits of early feeding, with the emphasis focused on improved on-farm performance and animal welfare. But when we consistently see the quality and vigour of the chicks from EmTech systems it is hard not to reflect that this debate was initiated to disguise weaknesses and limitations in the ability of some incubation systems to provide the correct conditioning for all the eggs within their incubators. Let’s face it, if the chicks do not hatch within a short window some will be exhausted and dehydrated and some will be still wet when it comes to take-off. Early feeding will help to alleviate (or mask) this disparity, but if all chicks are incubated well, is early feeding really necessary? At EmTech we are adamant that the primary function of any hatchery and the ultimate responsibility of every hatchery manager is to produce the maximum number of first class, strong, healthy chicks which are in prime condition to perform well on farm.
At EmTech we believe that the secret to ensuring that the maximum number of embryos develop into strong healthy chicks is to provide ALL the eggs, irrespective of their position within the incubator with the same environmental conditions, not just the majority of eggs. More importantly however, is the necessity to maintain temperature uniformity throughout the egg mass in order for all chicks to hatch within the shortest hatch window. The unique design of EmTech single stage incubators allow temperatures to deviate by no greater than 0.6֯ C across the entire egg mass. This will ensure that most chicks will hatch within 12 – 15 hours with a total hatch window of less than 24 hours. We call this the >EmTech Effect< and excellent hatchery results will bear this out. It may be considered ‘old fashioned’ by our competitors but it makes sense to us that if all eggs are exposed to identical conditions they will all hatch at the same rate.
Temperature uniformity is governed by the incubators ability to move and mix air thoroughly and deliver it to every extremity within the incubator cabinet. If airflow is not sufficient or if there are restrictions to air movement or if the cabinet is not well insulated and sealed, the task of creating temperature uniformity for all the eggs will be impossible.
Only EmTech can provide these perfect conditions, with a temperature bandwidth across all the eggs of no greater than 0.6 degrees C. It may be worth checking the temperature differentials in your incubators.