Egg turning mistake, please help


In the Brooder
8 Years
Sep 24, 2011
I'm really upset and angry with myself. I have successfully hatched many chicks from an incubator in the last 9 months. 10 days ago I filled the incubator with a variety of beautiful eggs with a view to selling some of the chicks to recoup the considerable amount of money I had spent, plus add a few beauties to my little flock. All nicely set up and switched on, temps stabilised, cradle plugged in. So far so good.

A few days ago it dawned on me that something was wrong...although I had been checking the temps and had taken one or two eggs out to do some candling I hadn't noticed that the incubator had not moved position. I had plugged in the cradle but not flipped the switch at the socket to turn it on. Disaster

The incubator had been running for 5 days at that point. Within an hour or so of my terrible realisation I was taking my daughter to hospital with appendicitis (for some reason it was while waiting for the ambulance that the penny dropped about the non turning cradle, goodness knows why!) and it has only been this morning that I have been able to take a look at the damage. Out of 42 eggs, 15 have not developed at all, not sure if that is my fault or would have happened anyway. Of the rest, most have a huge air bubble on the side that was upmost for all that time. Some seem to have developing peeps, others I can't tell.

Do you guys think there is any point whatsoever in leaving the eggs to finish incubating? Or have I guaranteed that they cannot possibly hatch now? I can't believe I have made such a stupid mistake
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I have also done that!! Mine was for 8 or so days , went ahead and turned the turner on and got a pretty decent hatch sooooo?? I would ltry it.
Good Luck
A few weeks back, someone posted that they went through the entire incubation process with the pointy side up. Most eggs did not hatch, but some did. I know yours is turning, not pointy side down, but the point is that they can be pretty tough. I would not give up on them yet.

Turning probably had nothing to do with them not developing. Turning does several things relative to their development but I don't think them not being turned would stop development.

Don't panic when your read this. Just because something can happen does not mean that it absolutely will. Remember, they can be pretty tough. If the eggs are not turned, especially early on, it is possible some body parts can develop out of position. Possible, not absolutely sure to happen. These eggs usually don't make it all the way to hatch. Also, if they are not turned, the yolk or developing chick can migrate to the porous egg shell and dry out and get stuck. This is not going to happen in 5 or 6 days, but it can happen. Turning is important, but not turning for a while is not necessarily a total disaster.

I don't really trust my candling at 7 days, especially with brown, blue, or green eggs. I can usually get pretty close, but I have been known to make mistakes. I always give them some more time before I do anything drastic.

Good luck and don't beat yourself up too much. I haven't made that particular mistake yet but I assure you, we all make mistakes. Learn and go on.
Your already half way there might as well keep tryi8ng dont you think .. With good luck maybe you can answer some one posting a similar post down the road that you had wonderful luck ! I sure hope so ! Good Luck
I agree with the other posters. Don't beat yourself up. Things happen. I always candle when I set my eggs for hatching. There have been some experiments done where people have not turned their eggs at all. I don't recall how well the hatches were but I believe some did hatch. I have accidentally put an egg in pointy end up as some eggs are rather difficult to tell which end is the pointy end. Most of the chicks from the pointy eggs up have hatched. Good luck...
Thank you all so much for your replies. I feel really encouraged to keep going...even if I only get one or two chicks that's a lot better than none at all. And then yes, I can add my words of wisdom to the next poor person it happens to!

I'll keep you posted about how things turn out. Some of the eggs are blue and it's hard to see what's going on so I only took out those which were totally clear, or clear with a small red ring.
I'll admit I had a bit of trouble interpreting the first link, specifically the part about adhering to the shell. The way I understood that, the risk is higher in the first week, not later on. If I read that right, then my earlier comment was wrong. I thought that would be more important later on, not real early, as far as sticking to the shell. If I misread it, please straighten me out.

The second study was before you put them in the incubator, not after you start incubation. The need to not turn them the first five days ties in pretty well with the Texas A&M recommendation that you don't have to turn them during storage for the first week. I do anyway, just plug in the turner and store them in it.

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