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Day 16: Adventures in Power Failure

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Crazed Chicken Lass, Mar 2, 2009.

  1. Crazed Chicken Lass

    Crazed Chicken Lass In the Brooder

    Mar 2, 2009
    Fredericksburg, VA
    Hello....I am in Fredericksburg, Virginia. Last night, we had one of the biggest snowstorms on record for our area in many years. I have 33 eggs in the 'bator (my very first hatch!) and the power went out last night around 11pm.

    I have been on this forum reading for months, preparing for the arrival of these beloved chickens. My dad and mom are in Michigan, raising a small flock of organic laying hens, and they Fedexd me 36 eggs to go in the incubator they got me for christmas. I've been unbelieveably excited, and have taken great care in monitoring the temperature, humidity and turning of the eggs. So far, I only had to pull three that were obviously not developing.

    Anyway, I knew that the first thing I needed to do was cover the incubator with warm blankets for insulation. By 4am, the power was still out and I was getting very worried. I wanted to check the temp, but I didn't dare remove the blankets and risk losing heat. Then I remembered the battery generator in my hubby's car.....you can jump a car with it, but you can also plug into it. It only had about a 40% charge, but it was better than nothing. The incubator started warming up, and I was very relieved.

    Around 9am, I was trying to decide what to do. The power was still out, and I had no idea how long the battery would last. At 9:30, it started beeping, "low power" and the 'bator shut off. So I quickly packed them up in egg cartons, placed them back in the semi-warm incubator, wrapped the whole thing in a big, folded blanket and headed into town to the wine shop where I work (I was off today). It took about 25 minutes to get there with the roads in so-so shape. I set up the 'bator on the tasting bar and that is where they spent the day.

    The power finally came back at 3pm and I drove to town and picked them up around 6pm (again, nervous about bringing them out in the cold).

    I've been watching over them all night, wondering what kind of damage had been done. I finally decided to candle a few, if nothing else to prepare my kiddos for the worst. 7 out of the 7 that I candled all have moving babies! Unbelieveable.

    Thank you to everyone for posting such wonderful advice....and now it's time for me to give some: DON'T scrap the hatch until you know for sure! These babies are impressively resilient.

    Oh, happy day! [​IMG]

  2. #1California Chick

    #1California Chick Songster

    Dec 5, 2008
    SF Bay Area
    [​IMG] Welcome to BYC from California!!! [​IMG]

    Whoa, you sound like one determined Chick-Mama!!! [​IMG]

    It sounds like you have taken wonderful, thoughtful measures to protect your hatchlings!!! [​IMG]

    Yes, I agree that Mother Nature is very flexible!!!! [​IMG] You just have to work WITH her!!! [​IMG]

    Best of luck to you in your hatch!!!! [​IMG]

  3. Crazed Chicken Lass

    Crazed Chicken Lass In the Brooder

    Mar 2, 2009
    Fredericksburg, VA

    Cindy in CA -
    It's great to finally be on here. There are so many wonderful, friendly people on here and I look forward to sharing chicken adventures.

    Thanks for the warm welcome....
  4. bUg_Farm

    bUg_Farm Songster

    Oct 24, 2008
    On a mountain
    Congratulations on being so proactive!

    I am due to set eggs today. Yesterday, I came home and our power was out. I panicked thinking about what I would do if this happens when the eggs are set. We often lose power in bad weather.

    Thanks for posting your method - I'll keep it in mind and be prepared.

    Good luck on the hatch!
  5. ShadyGlade

    ShadyGlade Songster

    Wow aren't you one resourceful determined gal? [​IMG]

    Keep us post on your hatch!
  6. spook

    spook Songster

    You are one smart cookie, I know I'll be watching to see when they hatch. I never would have thought like you did, amazing!!! [​IMG]
  7. Cherlyn

    Cherlyn Songster

    Feb 24, 2009
    Alconbury, England
    Oh, brilliant! Best of luck to you! [​IMG]

  8. Crazed Chicken Lass

    Crazed Chicken Lass In the Brooder

    Mar 2, 2009
    Fredericksburg, VA
    Thanks for all of the encouragement![​IMG]

    Keeping my fingers crossed....
  9. perrym1962

    perrym1962 Songster

    Oct 21, 2007
    Eastview, Ky..
    Good luck to you. They should be ok.[​IMG]
  10. Chickapooh23

    Chickapooh23 Songster

    Jan 31, 2009
    Corning OH
    Good luck with your hatch. Remember, now it will take longer so don't get too concerned if you aren't pipping on day 21 or 22. We had a power outage too (great living in this part of the country) and my last chick hatched last night around 9:00 pm (day 23) my first hatched around 8:00 pm the night before. Our bator was without power for 4 hours. Yours may not start too peep or pip before day 23. [​IMG] I had no peeping until hours after my first pip on day 22.

    I had 10 of 12 hatch. They are beautiful, I just checked on them. They are laying side by side sleeping in the brooder. They reach almost the whole way across the brood. It is awesome.

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