2 quick hatching questions!

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Vinchinzo, Oct 22, 2014.

  1. Vinchinzo

    Vinchinzo Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 10, 2014
    Lake city, fl
    I have one chick unzipping right now on day 20 in the incubator. My other 30 show no signs of piping either internally or externally. Question 1. With such a large number of incubated eggs is it at all strange for only 1 to be so far ahead of the others? 2. If and when this first chick fully hatches is it safe to quickly remove her from the incubator and put in the brooder, before the others hatch? ....I've read they can stay in the incubator for three days, I'm just worried about her starving... among other things...please help.
     
  2. hennible

    hennible Overrun With Chickens

    I'm no expert but I think you will cause a critical temp/humidity drop if you open the incubator. The chick shouldn't stave it has the yoke to feed on for a bit... Wishing luck and patients to you...
     
  3. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    No it is not that unusual. A couple of hatches back I had one totally hatched more than 24 hours before any others even started pipping. I hatched 17 total that hatch. I've also had hatches where all the chicks were out before the 21 days were up.

    Is it safe to remove the first one? What a question! If you drive to the grocery store you might have an accident. Do you consider it safe to drive to the grocery store? Safe can be a nebulous term.

    If another egg has pipped there is a chance you can shrink wrap that chick by opening the incubator and letting the humidity out. Many people do that all the time and don’t have a problem, but sometimes chicks do get shrink wrapped. How big a risk that is will depend on a lot of things like how low the humidity was during incubation, how porous the individual shell was to start with, how much moisture you lose when you open it, how fast the incubator recovers humidity, and who knows what else? Are you guaranteed to hurt another chick if you open it? No, you are not. Are you guaranteed to not hurt another chick by opening it? No you are not. Are you willing to take that risk, knowing the chick will be fine for three days in the incubator? Purely your choice.
     
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2014
  4. hennible

    hennible Overrun With Chickens

    Good answer
     
  5. chickengeorgeto

    chickengeorgeto Overrun With Chickens

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    Don't open the incubator, at least don't open it until the end of day 22. Your chicks need to completely absorb the remaining egg yoke attached to their navels. This gives them time to build up energy reserves as well as rest up from the ordeal of hatching. Sitting hens often don't quit the nest until day 23. I don't think that hens are in the habit of nursing their babies but these chicks that begin life at day 23 are IMHO just as lively as those turned out into the world. Also I think that the cheeping of the already hatched chicks goad the piping chicks to make a greater effort to hatch.

    Anytime you have a early hatched chick it usually shows that the eggs were not treated equally. Every time a hen lays an egg in a nest that already has eggs in it, she by necessity of being on the nest to lay, begins the process of incubation of the eggs already in the nest. Several hens laying in the same nest increases incubation time even more. I won't get into the proper care and feeding of hatching eggs but I do think that you'll have better luck if you'll gather your eggs at least twice per day if not more often. Even ambient temperature can start cell division leading to more "precocious" chicks. If a hen "steals" her nest away and hatches a clutch of chicks that are hers and hers alone, without human help has anyone ever noticed how good her hatch is?

    One reason for lockdown is to reduce the movement of the eggs while the chicks maneuver themselves into the proper position for hatching. If you set or attempt to hatch eggs with different levels of development you will have already hatched chicks running around inside the incubator bumping into eggs whose embryos are only now beginning to properly position themselves. This leads to chicks that are unable to orient properly and that leads to problems piping and hatching or to dead chicks. Also when hen hatching an early hatched chick can cause a hen to quit the nest with only one or two early hatched chicks and leave a dozen or more still piping chicks behind to die.

    I may need to remind some of you that hens are not human and that they don't LOVE and are not attached to their young in the same fashion that a human mother loves her children. A human mother loves he children for maybe 70 years, you'll be lucky if you find many hens that can stomach their own young for perhaps 7 weeks.
     
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2014
  6. Vinchinzo

    Vinchinzo Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 10, 2014
    Lake city, fl
    Thank you for the answers! In the past hour, two chicks have fully hatched and one is already disconnected from its egg. They are trying to stand but in the process they are knocking around the other eggs quite a bit....I guess that's just nature. Thanks again for the advice, the incubator will stay shut..for now. :)
     

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