Day 30, no internal pips, but all alive

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by duckman4450, Nov 21, 2015.

  1. duckman4450

    duckman4450 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have 3 mallard eggs that I am incubating. I have never hatched eggs and am using a homemade incubator so it was a longshot trying to hatch these as I have 0 experience.

    It is now day 30 and in about 6 hours they will have been in the incubator for 30 complete days. Not one of them has internally pipped, but they are all alive and moving. I even did the float test today to confirm they were alive.

    Just so you know, in the upcoming pictures, the horizontal pencil line is where the air sac was traced when I put them into lockdown (about 5 days ago) and the pictures were taken about 30 minutes ago.


    Egg 1: 58.1g starting weight

    A big change in air sac size since lockdown. Still some clear space and veins in between the duckling and the air sac.
    [​IMG]


    Air sac size
    [​IMG]

    Egg 2: 63.8g starting weight

    Blurry picture but this egg looks very bad. There is a large clear space with tons of veins showing on one half of the egg, and there has been very minimal decline in the air sac size since lockdown, which leads me to believe there is under-development and he is way behind schedule. It is still alive inside, however. I will add that #2 is a much bigger egg in size comparison with the others and weighed much more than the others.

    [​IMG]

    Egg #3: 56.3g starting weight

    By far the best egg of the three and the one I've had the highest hopes for since week 2 because of it's growth. The embryo takes up pretty much the entire shell and the air sac has lost a ton of size since lockdown.

    As you can see in the picture, I'm almost 100% positive that the triangle to the right of the vertical pencil line is it's bill trying to push the the membrane and internally pip.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I am going to definitely take the fault for this hatch and say that low temperatures were to blame (1 morning I woke up and the temperature inside the incubator was 88*F so maybe that night delayed their growth). I kept very close watch on the eggs' weight during incubation and they had lost exactly 14% of their weight when I put them into lockdown so it was not a humidity issue. Has anybody had such a delayed hatch time before, and if so were the chicks able to survive? How long should I give them before either giving up or intervening and pipping for them? I have a feeling that egg number 3 is going to internally pip soon, but #1 looks days out, and #2 looks very far out.
     
  2. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    Good documentation - I hope someone like @Orca5094 or @WVduckchick or other hatchers check in.
     
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  3. WVduckchick

    WVduckchick For The Birds! Premium Member

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    I would wager that you are correct, low temps have delayed things. But since they are still progressing, dont give up yet. I had a power outage in the middle of a hatch last March. 18 hours with no power at all. 4 survived and are still with me today. I have their eggs in my bator now!! They hatched on day 30,31,32.
    Your pics look fine, from what I can tell on my phone, so hang in there. I'm betting on pips real soon.
    I would suggest fairly high humidity at this point though.
    Good luck!
     
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  4. duckman4450

    duckman4450 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Not giving up hope yet!!! Trying to keep humidity as close to 75% as possible as well as temp around 99*. Just curious what you think about egg #2; you can clearly see egg white and veins but he is also very lively. Could it be because it's a very big egg and he doesn't need to occupy the whole thing or just under development? I can try to add better pictures if you need it.

    Just candled egg #3 (without opening the bator) and it seems he's pushing his body against the membrane like he's definitely trying to get out.
     
  5. Orca5094

    Orca5094 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I agree the delay is due to the low temp, that definitely slows them down sometimes. I think egg #2 is definitely underdeveloped and probably won't hatch, but it never hurts to keep them in there and see what happens of course. The other two are late, but look and sound like they are doing fine. So it's just a waiting game now. I would not make a safety hole unless they are internally pipped for more than 24 hours without externally pipping. They have about 24 hours or so worth of air in there once they internally pip. Assisting in any part of hatching is always a last resort. Making a safety hole too early will risk drying out the membranes inside the egg.

    I had a Cayuga/Rouen cross hatch on Day 32 this past Spring. I believe it was due to a lower temp on her side of the incubator because the ones on the other side actually hatched a couple days early, the ones in the middle were right on time, then that last one was late. All were put into the incubator at the exact same time, so it was quite strange. I think a new incubator is in order for me! Anyway, the really late one hatched completely normal and without issue. She is now 6 months old. :)
     
  6. duckman4450

    duckman4450 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I figured that about egg #2, but he's still pushing through! I will definitely not intervene unless I think there's no other way for it to survive. Glad to hear your duck is doing well!
     
  7. duckman4450

    duckman4450 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Little update: Just noticed this weird gray kind of watermark-looking thing with a black dot on the bottom of egg #3. The duckling is not dead and is still moving in there and the mark seems to be slowly growing. Anybody know what the heck it is? It's on the polar opposite side of the top of the egg that's facing up [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  8. Orca5094

    Orca5094 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That looks like the duckling is trying to pip there, they will often have spots like this appear when they are pipping somewhere other than the air cell. You might want to make a little safety hole there so the duckling can get air. It's a very delicate and risky process when they pip outside the air cell like this, but sometimes they can be saved. You'll want to very very carefully make a very small hole in the shell I would say right where that smaller darkest spot is and see if you can see the duckling's bill there. You'll also want to prop that part of the egg up higher than the rest of the egg so the duckling doesn't drown in the remaining fluid inside the egg. Keep the hole very very small, just so it can get air in there, you don't want it to be too big because it could dry out the membranes under the shell too quickly and make it even harder for the little one to hatch. You also have to be very careful because there are blood vessels in the inner membrane that can rupture and cause bleeding.

    Have you read through this link before? It has alot of information about how to assist with hatching. I believe your duckling is malpositioned and pipping the wrong end, so if you scroll down on this link you can read through the part about malpositions:

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/a/step-by-step-guide-to-assisted-hatching

    Assisting is always a last resort, but in my experience the ones who have these spots appear need at least the help of a safety hole so they can get air while they prepare to hatch out since they do not have the luxury of an air cell at that location. I would just do the safety hole for now and then leave it alone and see what it does over the next 24 hours or so. Keep your humidity up in your incubator so the membrane doesn't dry out and remember to prop the hole up higher than the rest of the egg so the duckling doesn't drown.
     
  9. duckman4450

    duckman4450 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hi Orca, you were exactly right. The duckling was trying to pip just a tad bit above the black dot. I made a safety hole and peeled away the membrane and found it's beak and head and he is still moving. I hit a small vein but quickly stopped and hardly any blood came out. I put the egg back in the incubator facing up and am trying to keep the humidity up as high as I can. It's no wonder he's not out yet, he was trying to get out toward the bottom of the incubator! Anyway, thanks so much for your help and wish me luck! [​IMG] I will keep you updated on his progress.
     
  10. WVduckchick

    WVduckchick For The Birds! Premium Member

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    :thumbsup nice save!
     

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