Did it drown?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by iamcuriositycat, May 21, 2010.

  1. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Chillin' With My Peeps

    3,703
    46
    228
    Jul 30, 2009
    Charlotte, NC
    I had a duckling pip last night and then it expanded its pip very quickly into a large hole. It looked very wet in there, but I had never seen one open such a large hole in one place before, so I thought it was normal. It was pretty vocal and I could see its little mouth. Then, about twenty minutes ago, I looked in and it was still. I took it out and sure enough, it was dead.

    The top of its head looked swollen and full of liquid--it was mushy too. It was very wet in there. Did it drown? I hatch in cartons, so maybe it was trying to keep its head above the wet, and it finally ran out of energy? It expanded its pip SO fast, now I think maybe it was desperately trying to get its head up above the liquid...

    Does that seem likely? I feel awful--I could have saved it. [​IMG]

    This batch looked funny when I locked it down. Some looked normal, but others had very small air cells compared to what I'm used to. I suppose if it had a small air cell, it would drown more easily...

    I think the small air cells are due to the fact that I was running staggered hatches and this batch happens to have had to go through TWO lockdowns, so the average humidity was higher.

    I have a separate hatcher now, so hopefully it won't happen again.

    I would love to hear if my theory sounds about right, or if others with experience think it might have been something else.

    And should I do anything about the others in there that have pipped? Will they likely drown too? They are not working as hard as that little one did, so I'm inclined to think that they are not having the same trouble. What do you think?
     
  2. CoopCrazy

    CoopCrazy Brooder Boss

    Mar 3, 2009
    Columbus,IN
    My guess would be yes it drowned... If you were seeing noticably smaller air cells the your humidity must have been too high.. I would think in an egg carton it would make it harder for them to rest as if they put their head downs they would likely go into the excess water in the shell....
     
  3. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Chillin' With My Peeps

    3,703
    46
    228
    Jul 30, 2009
    Charlotte, NC
    Thanks, Coop Crazy. That's kind of what I was thinking too. Poor little thing. I now know the signs, though--fast pip expansion, wet interior. I'll know to set it on its side to give it a better chance. I think it's the fact that they went through two lockdowns before their own lockdown--I won't do that again.

    I do have two ducklings hatched out of that batch, and more zipping, but I also had a high rate of non-pippers, which I think is probably from the poor air cell development.

    I hate having to learn at their expense, but at least I'm learning.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by