candling tonight for the first time


8 Years
Feb 27, 2011
I have 28 eggss sitting in the incubator on day 7--I was going to candle tomorrow, but turns out I might have to work the next few nights, so I figured I'd do it tonight. These poor eggs have been through a bit, I'm afraid. They were shipped, and being the newbies we are, I somehow missed the fact that they needed to "rest" after shipping (despite reading everything in sight! How did I miss that??!). So they went in the incubator within a couple of hours of getting here (from 2 different sources). Then, about 4 days in, my 4 year old managed to turn down the temp--looks like it was down around 75 degrees for a couple of hours. At this rate, it will be a minor miracle if any of them make it!

In any case, these are all colored eggs (greens and light olives mostly), none of them too dark. I took a quick look at two of them, just to see if my flashlight was strong enough and one of them had a dark dot with what looked like veins--a good one, I think. The second looked...well...almost mottled? Very uneven coloring with no discernable dark spot or features. In fact, I couldn't even decide where the air that's supposed to be there was. I'm not sure what to do with that one, or any others I find that might be similar. None of them smell and I'm afraid of deciding they are not viable and throwing them out in case I am wrong. I've looked at dozens of pics of candled eggs at the same stage, but unfortunately, there's nothing like experience to teach. Anyone have any advice? Should I just leave them, even if I can't find any signs of life? Or is there something definitive to look for?

Any egg that has any amount of blue or green pigment, I'd let until at least 10 days. The pigment goes through the shell and makes them more opaque than brown eggs. If it's heavily blue or green, you may have problems candling even at two weeks. I'd let it go and use your nose in a few days if you are worried about bad eggs.
Well, we went ahead and candled them, using a 200 lumen LED flashlight--worked great. The only problem is that, with the exceptions of the few that were clear as a bell all over (not a blessed thing going on in there), the air space was consistently at the wrong end of the egg--it was always at the small end rather than the large end. Seems likely a result of not letting them rest after shipping, but geez--ALL of them?? We had quite a few that were clearly veining, a couple that were actually moving, and a few that just weren't clear either way. I don't know what to do about the air space being on the wrong end. Thought about putting them in an egg carton in the incubator with the pointy end down for the remainder of the incubation and just tipping the carton back and forth and hoping the air space moves up, but that leaves the eggs that are being tipped on the upside very close to the heating element (like maybe 1/4" away from it). I don't know if I am tipping them too high? I was trying to get a 30-45 degree angle. Will less do the trick? Right now, they are all lying on their sides on the screen. I don't want my poor little chicks to all drown trying to get out of their eggs! Help!

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