In the Brooder
- Apr 15, 2015
So I have had six white Mandarin eggs in the incubator at a very steady 99.5° with a humidity of 57% for most of the time minus a few very minor fluctuations overnight but usually no less than 55 to 58%. These were eggs shipped from eBay, and a couple of them have saddle air cells but all developed beautifully, wonderful veining, great movement, although a couple were a little faster than others who were a little slower. So on the 26th day I candled them and saw great movement and they all looked wonderful. I put them into a separate hatcher because I had a few regular Mandarin eggs that were set a little later. I calibrated the thermometer and hygrometer and both the incubator and hatcher gave the exact same readings. So in the hatcher I raised the humidity up to 65% and I was looking for signs of movement on the 28th day to no avail, but I kept watching without worrying because I reize sometimes they like to take their time and you can't rush them. Yesterday I noticed three of them had very dark spots at the the small end of the egg. I googled that and came back with a lot of posts saying that it was normal and the chick was probably trying to reposition into hatching position and maybe scratched a blood vessel that had not been absorbed yet, so I still did not worry. Yesterday on day 29 I saw very small wobbling in one of the eggs so I took this as a good sign. So this afternoon I checked on them again and there is no rocking and still no sign of anything whatsoever. So I took them and did a very quick candling without any fluctuation of the incubators temperature or humidity (it holds steady surprisingly well). In one of the eggs I can still see very clear and defined veining with obvious movement. It does not look ready to hatch at all. One of the eggs, the one that was wobbling yesterday, is too dark to see anything whatsoever, but there was definitely no movement or internal pip into the air cell. The other eggs, I have no idea what they look like. It is weird blobs and shadows. If it were earlier during incubation I would have guessed that it was dead in the shell but this late I have no idea if they have died or if this is what they are supposed to look like immediately before they hatch. Both the incubator and Hatcher were brand-new and sterilized before use, there was an automatic turner in the incubator so I wasn't opening it and touching the eggs every day, and when I took them out to candle them I washed my hands in antibacterial sanitizer and used rubber gloves. I realize sometimes eggs for unknown reasons take longer than usual, but I am just wondering what everyone else's thoughts are. I'm being patient, just wondering what more experienced duck hatchers would say. Do they sound dead in shell or just slow movers? Do you think the wobbler that isn't wobbling was trying to internally pip and failed and has died?