Carbon Dioxide causes the pip with muscle spasms


10 Years
Jun 14, 2009
Southern Oregon
My Coop
My Coop
Does anyone know of any articles or have any comments on carbon dioxide causing the muscle spasms which cause the chick in the egg to pip the membrane & then the shell? I've known about this for several years from back in the 80's when I raised & hatched cockatiels & various other parrots. Also, that carbon dioxide is given off during respiration in humans, etc. It also builds up in an egg. Any articles or comments on how this all works?
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Never heard that, but it's very interesting
I just read someone's explanation of that in this forum last week. I have looked and looked and can't find it again. It sounds like a much more convincing reason for lockdown than just losing temp. & humidity (which can be brought back up fairly quickly).
Now if I can just convince hubby NOT to open!
So if I breathe into the vent plug they will pip faster? Just kidding

That is very interesting and you are right, another great reason not to open the bator!
oooh if you do will you please post it here if possible?

This rules out opening for 'just a sec' to pull out shells & make room for the poor clumsy little guys. I did that, against my better judgment, and they were soo happy, and the temp & humidity came right back up... and the last 4 eggs never pipped; opened 3 days later to find perfectly developed chicks that looked like they'd never tried to pip (all tucked in & comfortable, & dead

In that post, some people mentioned opening their cabinet bators all the time. Maybe the big ones can keep from losing as much CO2, mine is little. Never again will I open.
There has to be something to it I guess. I am no expert but do remember
reading about it the other day. There was a little about it on the March Hatch-a-long thread.
That being said I have done lockdown to where incubator stays shut no matter
what. In both the little giant and the hovabator I would put water in with a syringe
through a straw.
Then with the little giant and the 2 sportsman (have no humidity setup) I either opened
the door or lid to add water after day 18. Personally I saw no difference in the results.
BUT, I am not saying do as I did. I know I did some things I probably should not have but last 3 hatches
I had...50 out of 55...46 out of 49 and 17 out of 17.
I really do try to leave it alone but sometimes I kinda forget and open when I shouldn't.
When I left it alone during lockdown hatched 8 out of 13 and 23 out of 31.

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