Chick seems stuck!


In the Brooder
Jul 22, 2021
My eggs are In the incubator on day 22. One of the eggs began to pop towards the bottom of the egg and I left it alone (at this time it has been about 16ish hours since the pipping began). It’s hard to know the exact time because the pip was hard to notice on the underside of the egg. My boyfriend stated last night that it seemed there was liquid coming from the little hole and when I checked this morning there were bubbles coming from the hole. I read on a previous post that this may indicate they are drowning, so I quickly took the egg out and tweezed off some of the shell and membrane. I could see that the poor little guy just the tip of his beak hanging out of that hole and that was where the bubbles were coming from. Now it seems that he/she can breath but can’t make progress. I had put the egg back facing up, so I am hoping this was a better choice than putting it back the way I found it. Should I wait another 12 or so hours before attempting to assist? The chick will thrash its head at times with no progression but I don’t want to risk a blood vessel rupture too soon. How long is too long to wait in this condition? The chick is breathing in there and at times has been cheeping at the other chicks. What do I do?


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Jul 19, 2021
Although it's unnatural, (if it hasn't hatched by now) I'd begin to help it out, wet the inner-lining with warm-ish water, make sure all the blood vessels are absorbed and slowly peel away the egg. Chicks should hatch between 12-18 hours after pipping, it can take longer... but I would break away a little. This can be caused by too low of humidity, as the inner layer can dry up.


Apr 21, 2018
Wilmington, NC
I'd make sure your humidity is up since you've opened the incubator during lockdown. The threat here is that the membrane surrounding the chick dries out quickly, essentially putting them in a straight-jacket when that membrane loses moisture.
Since the chick can breathe, I'd make sure the humidity is correct, maybe even a little on the high side, and give the chick another 6-12 hours.
If after that time, it hasn't progressed, then you can begin an assisted hatch. If you've never done an assisted hatch, read everything you can about such a procedure, and watch some videos before proceeding... Good luck!

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