Originally Posted by ronott1
Turning the fan off for hatching is thought to keep the chicks from shrink wrapping. Although it might increase the time it takes for a chick to shrink wrap, it is not the biggest factor in this. The biggest factor or most common is incubation temperatures that are off during the first 18 days. There is also flock health and nutrition issues that cause shrink wrap\sticky chicks.
It is better to focus on getting good development during the first 18 days. Get a thermometer like the brinsea spot check, make sure the eggs are turned enough and use the cool down cycle. Sticky or shrink wrapped chicks happen because the chicks did not absorb the yolk and moisture correctly--in other words they did not develop well. They will not be very robust.
If they are from your flock, make sure that the breeding flock does not have parasites and are getting good nutrition. The egg farmer that I hatch for told me proudly that he fed is flock only scratch grains all winter! Then he wondered why he was getting low hatch rates. The flock never did recover from that mistake.
Note: Sally knows this stuff--I am posting for the group!
I have done many ignorant and some down right stupid mistakes along the way but wow........scratch grain only? My birds are free of critters. Had a mite/lice issue after all the rain we got and the grounds were sprayed, all birds, dogs and cat even my carpet dusted with sevin. The hens have lay feed, free range and run to the door to get treats every time it opens.........some fly to the door....the treats are usually oatmeal, cat food a couple times a week and veggies at times. They have oyster shell and also egg shells I bake and crush. I have a WS that is the roos favorite and is always bald:( Her eggs are not being used any longer due to some leg issues that were fairly consistent in the hatches. There's a camera on the coop so I know who is laying what and when the pullets begin to lay. (6 of them are due to lay). Yesterday I picked up Feather Fixer due to the older gals molting and the change in season. I raised 200 hens for 4-H when growing up then had a sprinkle of a few here and there over the years off and on. One of the Purina Layer Pellets I got a few weeks back was in question.............the girls didn't seem quite right.......bad batch? Not sure so I went to an off brand, they picked back up and now the FF.
My first egg bound hen is in isolation. She's 5 years old and I read over everything to do. Gave her calcium........electrolytes and yesterday started her on tetracycline. Shes' lubed up and is now passing poop and drinking and eating.......she sounded a bit stuffy and not sure if it was to do with the egg or my not noticing soon enough due to all the hatches..........we'll see..........hoping this morning some action happened and if not will try extracting the egg. She's not dehydrated and is not acting uncomfortable like she was........