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Day 24 = Day 20? scolding myself too. Feel free to chime in

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by suzannaski, Jul 3, 2011.

  1. suzannaski

    suzannaski Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So, I have a homemade incubator. I tested it, refined it, then set some precious eggs.
    I set them on 6/9. Kept the humidity and temp per the egg sellers instructions.
    6/30 (Day 21) has passed, no hatches, no rolling eggs, no noises. Okay, I killed them right?
    This morning (7/3) I figure I should start throwing them out. Broke open first one, wasn't fertilized.
    Broke open second one, and UGH! Blood! Still beating! Little foot came out! AAAAHHHHH!
    Tried to piece the hole in the egg back together so it could hatch, but then it died.
    So I broke the rest of the egg open, and the chick was starting to pull the yolk into its stomach, so it was on day 20?
    This is where I am so confused. It's been 24 days!
    Needless to say, the remaining 14 eggs are still in the incubator.
    I wonder if the temp swing in the 'bator (it drops to 96 periodically, but not for more than 30 min) are slowing the development?
    I feel awful that I killed that chick. I feel worse that I now hope it was "only a rooster".
    What a start to a morning!
     
  2. Highlander

    Highlander Tartan Terror

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    You said you kept the temps as per the sellers instructions.... what were they? It defintely sounds like temps have been too low throughout incubation. THey should have been 99.5 for forced air or 101 for still air. Do you have a fan in there? Were your thermometers/hygrometers calibrated?

    Don't give up, hatching is a learning process. It sometimes takes many attempts to get things just right for our own particular situations.
     
  3. suzannaski

    suzannaski Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm not sure how to calibrate, but my thermostat is matching my hygrometer/thermometer thingy. The instructions with the eggs said 97-102 F for temp, and 24% humidity for the first 18 days then 40% humidity for the last 3 days because she gets better hatching rates at those settings. When I candled them on my "original" day 18, there were at least 6 chicks, some more developed than others.
    They are Araucanas, so it's hard to candle through the tinted egg shells. (At least for me)
    I was thinking that the less developed embryos were dead, but now I am thinking that maybe they're just developing more slowly.
    No fan, but it is open air. I check it at least three times a day for temp. I can reach my hand in through the hole for the ceramic heat lamp to check the gauges and to add warm water for humidity. I keep it in our breezeway, a small room that is usually warm.
    I know, it's totally Rube Goldberg. It's a cooler with a damp towel on the bottom, then I built a raised screen floor to keep the eggs off the damp towel, built a cardboard roof with a hole in the top for the heat lamp and the thermostat sensor. The thermostat sensor is hovering just above the tops of the eggs.
    It's made all from stuff I had or was given to me, except the thermostat. It's a reptile thermostat. I originally bought it to keep my chicks warm back in the spring, without worrying about burning down the barn.
     
  4. suzannaski

    suzannaski Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Berlin
    Went off to the barn for a few hours, came back and I can hear pipping and chirping!
    I just can't believe it!
    Well, thank the lord, allah or whoever that I tested only two eggs, and didn't just toss the batch in the trash.
    Fingers x'd that they pip out successfully.
    I will just reset my calender to pretend I'm on day 20, and see what happens with the others that were less developed.
    How long do you think I should wait?
    Why does life have to be such a harsh teacher sometimes? I'm sorry, poor chick from this morning. [​IMG]
     
  5. cmom

    cmom Hilltop Farm

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    Quote:Since you had a drop in your temp your hatch can be delayed.
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  6. suzannaski

    suzannaski Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Berlin
    I just went out to check on them, and one of the other eggs exploded. It was one that I marked "fertile?" because it didn't look quite right when I candled. The smell is intense! I'm trying to air out the breezeway.
    The other egg stopped pipping since the explosion, but it's still pipping. Are those fumes strong enough to kill my hatching chick?
     
  7. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    Don't beat yourself up. Low temps can impede and lengthen incubation times. We've all done what you did at least once. It's part of the learning process. Yes, that chick was a cockerel and he was going to be human aggressive. Good luck with your hatch and keep us updated.
     
  8. suzannaski

    suzannaski Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Berlin
    Thanks Sourland (and everyone!)
    I can't get that smell outta my nose. But it's definitely made me forget the image of this morning's debacle.
     
  9. Highlander

    Highlander Tartan Terror

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    Anything happening? [​IMG]
     
  10. suzannaski

    suzannaski Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Berlin
    The one that was pipping and peeping hatched yesterday morning!
    Yes, it was born on the forth of July! I may have to name it Yankee Doodle.
    I recandled the rest last night, removed 4 eggs before any more exploded. The rest are pretty much all dark except for the air cell, and I could make out a toe in one. So I guess that means I play the waiting game again. I wish they'd hurry up! This poor cute thing needs company!
    I have a broody sitting on 2 eggs, due to hatch on 7/8 (I still have faith in 21 day hatches) but I am worried if I put the lonely little chick in with the broody, she might forget about her two eggs. How does that work, anyway?
    Not sure how long I should wait now for the rest of the incubator batch, but I don't want to kill anymore chicks! Or do you think the super-stinky egg goo bacteria killed the rest of the unhatched chicks?
     

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