Despite 3 attempts my chicken eggs won't hatch (they are definitely fertile before anyone thinks tha

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by PaulaG, Sep 15, 2013.

  1. PaulaG

    PaulaG Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 23, 2011
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    Ok, so I keep chickens but have never hatched any myself. My dad made me an incubator which didn't work, I tried twice with 6 eggs in each. I know the problem here was because the regulator for the temperature was too localised and so the heater would switch off too soon and the eggs were nit all reaching correct temp. So now we bought an incubator and I was all set up. I bought half dozen on line and a friend gave me 4. After candling I discovered 3 of the purchased ones were no good and 2 of the ones my friend gave me had the red ring in them. Anyway, day 21 is here and no chicks, I candled them around day 16 and all was good, they had movements inside and I just don't understand why this is not working!!! The only thing that I could possibly think of is that I seem to be unable to raise the humidity past 50% in the incy but I think I am right in saying that people do hatch eggs without any humidity so why do I keep failing?

    HELP!!!!!

    Thanks
     
  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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  3. PaulaG

    PaulaG Out Of The Brooder

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    Because of the humidity problem I'm not sure whether to put some drops of warm water on the eggs or just leave them for a couple days?
     
  4. yinepu

    yinepu Overrun With Chickens

    Have you candled the eggs yet today? If so did you see any movement in the eggs? Are the air cells the correct size? If the air cells are too small it can result in sticky chicks, bloated chicks or drowned chicks .. if the air cells are too large the chick may be too weak to pip and hatch on it's own.. (on the diagram the line at the day of incubation shows where the bottom of the air cell should be on that day of incubation.. )

    [​IMG]


    First.. did you use an accurate thermometer to keep an eye on the temperature during incubation? If the temps were a bit low it will delay hatching..
    Did you completely sterilize the incubator before use?.. if not bacteria in the incubator can kill unhatched chicks

    Does the incubator have any vents? Are they open or closed?
    Vents should be open throughout incubation AND hatch to allow for enough fresh air exchange.. if not carbon dioxide can build up rapidly and kill chicks just before hatch...


    edited to add.. most hygrometers are faulty or inaccurate.. so let the air cells or weight loss of the egg be your best guide as to what your humidity should be during incubation..

    I don't add any water during incubation unless the eggs call for it or at hatch.. at hatch i let the humidity rise naturally as the chicks hatch.. I never have issues with sticky chicks or shrinkwrapped chicks because of the design of my incubators.. MOST incubators are designed with a major flaw with fan placement which causes more problems with chicks at hatch than the humidity at hatch or how often a bator is opened..
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2013
  5. PaulaG

    PaulaG Out Of The Brooder

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    Day 22 and I candled (I know I probably shouldn't have but need to know where things are going wrong)
    I did this as a grey line appeared around the outside of the egg and I haven't seen anything like this in any forums! Anyway there was movement inside and what I can only describe as a beating type movement (similar rythm you see on an ultra sound against the air sac. I am now worried I have upset and disturbed things.
    The incubator has had a steady temp at 99 and has air vents that are open, my hydrogemeter says 50% and I have tried to rais it but with no luck, I have 3 other eggs that are 3 days behind the first 2 that haven't hatched as I acquired some from a friend before the others were delivered. They are due tomorrow (well day 21 that is)
    I'm also worried a little that the chick is unable for some reason to break into the air sac but obviously everyone says NOT to interfere.
     
  6. PaulaG

    PaulaG Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 23, 2011
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    Just to add the beating type thing was rounded and not as I have seen pics of like a little beak?
    And also the shadow type line has a patch of greyish near it that is similar to when you get an egg that has a porous or thin type shell, it did not have this to start with and has been a perfect shell to candle!
     
  7. LTygress

    LTygress Chillin' With My Peeps

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    First of all, try raising the temp a little closer to 102 degrees instead of 99. I have had PLENTY of personal experience that chicks at 102 will develop "faster" than chicks at 99 degrees.

    Second, try checking for an internal pip - but not by candling. Hold the egg up against your ear and lightly scratch the outside. If the chick has made an internal pip, he will most likely chirp at the sound of the scratching. If they have made an internal pip, leave them be - they're coming along just fine. A lot of chicks will "pierce" the membrane inside, but not actually stick their beak out. They poke it, and then recede back into their own twisted-up body. So you might not see the beak at all!

    I personally don't monitor my humidity too much at all. But I live in Georgia where natural humidity is through the roof. The other day it was sunny with no clouds in the sky, 78 degrees, and humidity of... 86%. Horrible!

    But I did get one of those little weather-station type things at Wal-Mart that shows humidity and it's always right around 50% in my incubator. It hasn't affected my eggs though. They still hatch with no problem.

    If you are still worried about humidity though, get a water sprayer, set the nozzle to "fine mist" and spritz the inside of the incubator once or twice a day with warm water.

    IF ALL ELSE FAILS, you see no signs of an internal pip, and you think they may be dying (or have died) crack the center of the air-sac in the end of the shell, and look inside. If the chick seems to be moving, look for blood vessels. You can try to make an internal pip for him right near his beak IF there is a spot with no blood vessels right there. Whatever you do when assisting him, don't puncture any blood vessels. Check for them before you make any moves. Move slowly, and if you ever happen to hit one, stop immediately, put him back in the incubator, and wait several more hours. A LITTLE bleeding doesn't usually hurt a chick almost ready to hatch. And once you get about 1/3 of the shell cleared completely away to give him a full way out, let HIM do the pushing to get out. I've never had one fail that part.
     
  8. PaulaG

    PaulaG Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks for that. I have come home today and the shell is now looking a little porous. Is this normal. It's like changing from a nice solid cream colour to a porous kind of almost grey!! Very strange. I will up the temp a little. I'm in the uk so humidity quite low here.

    Will keep you posted!
     
  9. PaulaG

    PaulaG Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 23, 2011
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    So I decided to give it a helping hand as you suggested, I did a float test first and he floated as a viable egg would. After breaking into the air cell it seemed obvious that it had dried out. Unfortunately I had a fully grown and developed little chick but he was dead! I am very sad as this is the closest I have got so far! So the other 1 that was due same time I also did a float test and that seemed fine but I didn't want to risk opening in case it will hatch? Then I have 3 others due tomorrow, I have given them a good spray over with warm water and will hope for the best.
    Did I kill it by candling it? There was something moving when I candled it at day 23 and I left it to its own devices, maybe I should have helped then? Or maybe it wasn't going to survive at all anyway? There was a big thing attached to its navel, I've heard it called something, is that a bad thing?

    Thanks guys for all your help x
     
  10. PaulaG

    PaulaG Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 23, 2011
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    Ok the other eggs are on day 24 and no sign. I have just candled and there was movement in 1 of them!! I've tried to increase the humidity by taping up 2 of the air holes?! Is that a good idea?
    What if it is stuck like the earlier 1? Should I help or be patient?
     

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