A newbie intervention tale...

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by featherz, Jul 12, 2010.

  1. featherz

    featherz Veggie Chick

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    Ok,I KNOW intervening is bad.. and I KNOW opening the bator is bad.. and I had the voices of BYC ringing in my ears.. but.. I had one big egg that pipped yesterday morning - beak sticking out, normal peeping. 24 hours later, NO progress and the peeping had turned frantic, almost screaming.. You could hear it when opening the door of the room the bator is in...

    In my head, I am thinking 'shrinkwrap??' - I HAVE opened the bator twice to remove dry keets since they started hatching 5 days early, but the humidity is very high (75%) and never had a drop below 70.. I assumed I shrinkwrapped this chick and it was my fault..

    I was fully prepared to cull it and I STILL had the 'thou shall NOT intervene!' ringing in my head, but figured it was better to die quickly than to scream in the egg and go out that way.. So I helped it out. Incubator humidity dropped to 70%.

    No, it was NOT shrinkwrapped that I could tell - it was HUGE. I am not sure it would have ever made it out. It is easily twice the size of the one it hatched with. Maybe one drop of blood. I notice the belly is a little big with I assume stored yolk. No organs on the outside, has both eyes, both feet, etc - popped it back into the bator to dry off. Seems tired but is walking and peeping loudly and stumbling around the rest of the eggs like a normal keet. I know it may die, but we shall see. Pics to follow later, but hard to take them when the two new ones are squooshed together in a corner peeping..

    I just hope I didn't shrinkwrap all the rest - I was FAST pulling this one out but keep your fingers crossed for me..

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2010
  2. crazy chook

    crazy chook Songster

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    Oh, very cute. I always help- just can't help myself [​IMG]
     
  3. Denninmi

    Denninmi Songster

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    If it looks like that at this point, I'm sure it will be fine.

    I had to help one of my turkeys out -- it too was just massive for the size of the egg and seemed like it couldn't move around enough to break the shell. I didn't open the egg, but what I did do was carefully apply really gentle pressure with a flat, tiny little metal manicure tool that looks minature spatula to crack the shell all around in the same place and manner it would zip. And viola, about 10 minutes later it pushed out. It is still the biggest of them at 6 weeks.

    I keep a couple of things on hand to help in these situations. I have styptic powder in case of bleeding. I also have tetracycline powder (farm supply stores sell it this way in 6 oz packages). Anyone who has problem-looking navels or any bleeding gets these on the navel right away.
     
  4. featherz

    featherz Veggie Chick

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    thanks for the support. Big Keet is fluffing out and walking around and just got home to TWO more - so now four of them are flapping around in my incubator. So that's 10/29 so far on my first hatch. Keeping my fingers crossed for more but at least I didn't shrinkwrap the entire hatch. [​IMG]

    I would not have opened its egg all the way except for the fact I was pretty sure it was tiring after all that work. It was obviously distressed and as a newbie hatcher you know I just HAD to try. I was just reading through the eggtopsy thread and I notice shipped eggs sometimes have a higher chance of being too big for the shell. My humidity through the hatch was actually a bit on the low side so I doubt it was too much humidity. Maybe that's why I have one in there that I am pretty sure pipped and quit - there's a pip but no movement for days so I'm pretty sure it's dead. I know, it happens.
     
  5. Kedreeva

    Kedreeva Longfeather Lane

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    The eggtopsty thread helped a baby! It was a success.

    I know a lot of people say not to help, and I'm an advocate of not helping if the egg hasn't pipped externally, and if it's been under 24 hours since external pip.......

    But on the same breath I will say that I've probably helped 75% of my own to hatch in some way. At the end of the day, we're not mama chickens and the issues with incubating eggs artificially is that it's an art AND a science and the best we have gotten a handle on is the science side. Even if my temps stay completely stable, even if my humidity is spot on, I always assume I've done something differently than a real mother would have done, and I'm aware this may cause a problem for them come hatch day. And I haven't been wrong, the ones I've helped haven't been any worse off than the ones I didn't... in fact the few times I have decided not to intervene have been the few times I felt terrible for not doing something to prevent the death that occurred. So don't let us scare you into not helping if your judgment says something is awry.

    And in your case, you helped at the right time. It pipped, you let it sit, and it hit the freaking out stage where it couldn't get out and it wanted out NOW. The last one I had like this started screaming at 2:30am and didn't stop AT ALL until I got out of bed at 4:30am and cracked it out of the egg while half awake and told it to be quiet because I had work in 2 hours.

    And lastly... best trick for getting out an egg to help and not hurt the others... I drape a paper towel over the edge of my bator with a corner sticking out. When I wet the corner, the water seeps past the seal and into the bator, upping the humidity almost immediately because of the huge surface area. The humidity goes up, you grab the chick and it goes down (to normal) and then you help, wet the paper so it goes up, and stick the chick back in and it drops back to normal. Your humidity never goes below where it needs to go and it doesn't stay up long enough to cause a problem.
     
  6. featherz

    featherz Veggie Chick

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    Mar 22, 2010
    Saratoga County, NY
    Thanks, I feel better. I could have helped the one that pipped and most likely quit, but in that egg's case, there was no peeping at all. I think it pipped out (shell broken) and then something happened - I can see beak under the shell so I know it made it through but there's been not a sound. At least if it's dead, it didn't get to the freak out stage. With the one I helped it kept poking the beak out over and over but nothing was happening and it was obviously saying I WANT OUT NOW! so I took the risk. Not sure I can face eggtopsy on the rest of my eggs as it looks like almost every one is now pipped so there's keets in there, whether dead or alive. This is only day 26, so I'm leaving them. hopefully none will stink bomb me!
     
  7. featherz

    featherz Veggie Chick

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    Mar 22, 2010
    Saratoga County, NY
    Just as an update - I did pull out that one egg I was sure was dead, and sure enough it was. Shrinkwrapped. Poor thing! That one however, was not my doing from opening the incubator - it pipped out as one of the '5.5 days early batch' when I was out of town and the humidity in the bator was 35-40%. The poor thing just had the bad luck to decide to come out before my incubator was ready (and on my birthday, the one day I wasn't here).. Ah well. [​IMG]

    Had I known what I was doing, maybe I could have saved it, but I was kinda befuddled when I went home to check my eggs and they were pipping way too early!
     

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