Could these eggs have been hatched?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Sunny Side Up, Aug 1, 2008.

  1. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

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    Mar 12, 2008
    Loxahatchee, Florida
    I don't own an electric incubator, but I have several mixed-breed bantams who will brood. Recently I set 3 hens with eggs from the standard size flock.

    The first two hens left unhatched eggs behind. About 24 hours after the other chicks hatch the hens leave the nest to take their kids out to eat & drink & scratch. I usually take the unhatched eggs out of the nest at that time.

    The unhatched eggs were ones from which I really wanted chicks. They were big brown eggs from my Red Sex-Link. I had chicks hatch from her eggs before in an electric incubator, and really liked the chicks. There was a huge genial red & white rooster and a big red & white hen. I was hoping to get more birds like them.

    When I cracked these unhatched eggs I found them to be full of chick!

    Why do you think the chicks didn't come out? Do you think they could have hatched artificially? What would be the best way to make that happen? Would I need an actual incubator or could I keep them warm with a heat lamp? Would I need to provide moisture/humidity?

    The last hen has 1 chick that hatched out and is still setting on 2 more eggs, one of which is a big brown one. I know she did get up at least once today to take her chick out, but she is still hugging those unhatched eggs closely when she is on the nest. I'm waiting to see if she can persuade them to finally hatch.

    I appreciate any & all ideas, theories, & imput. Thank you!
     
  2. Akane

    Akane Overrun With Chickens

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    Jun 15, 2008
    Eggs can hatch several days late. If you got them right away before they got too cold you might be able to hatch them. Then again the hen might abandon them because there is something wrong and they won't hatch correctly. Hard to say. I suppose if you see the hen leave the eggs and not return you could grab them real quick, candle to see if there's movement, and try to incubate if she's not coming back. It would be easiest with an actual incubator. A quick homemade incubator can be made with a styrofoam cooler, lightbulb for heat, and sponges for water but it's hard to regulate the temp and humidity in such a setup. You do have to keep the humidity up or the chicks will stick to the shells while trying to hatch.
     
  3. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

    4,726
    139
    281
    Mar 12, 2008
    Loxahatchee, Florida
    That's what I thought, there's a chance of a hatch but fairly difficult to facilitate. I might try the cooler/sponge/light method for a few days with the next abandoned eggs, ya never know...

    I know of someone in my neighborhood here in sunny, humid South Florida who got abandoned eggs to hatch in an aquarium with a heat lamp on them.

    My third broody hen is still setting on her two unhatched eggs while her one chick patiently waits in the nest box with her. I know the Mama is taking Chickie out for food & water, but they mostly hang out in the nest. I hope her patience pays off!
     

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