Eggs lost weight - not enough?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by chickychicka, Oct 1, 2012.

  1. chickychicka

    chickychicka Out Of The Brooder

    49
    1
    41
    May 16, 2012
    Italy, Europe
    I have been keeping my 7 remaining eggs (started with 11) in the incubator at a 40-50% humidity rate. As I just weighed the eggs now (day 16) I noticed that they had lost weight but not as much as recommended; only 7-9.5% and drained the bit of water that was left in there and will see what that will do for the next 24-48 hours. How high will I have to have humidity once lockdown has started? Or is it not a good idea to "dry the eggs out" now because it's close to hatching day? I still have 35% humidity in there now.
    I've read "drowning chicks" stories and am worried that I reacted too late to make a difference now.
    Any suggestions? THANKS a lot!
     
  2. HEChicken

    HEChicken Overrun With Chickens

    7,544
    174
    316
    Aug 12, 2009
    BuCo, KS
    My Coop
    It seems to be that the first 7 days make the most difference. Its fine to reduce humidity until lockdown, but I would still increase for lockdown because you don't want the membrane drying out after the chick has pipped.

    Have you calibrated your hygrometer to be sure that what it is is measuring is accurate? I would reduce incubation humidity to 35-40% and then increase to 65-70% for lockdown. With a calibrated hygrometer, I have found these settings do a pretty good job of keeping weight loss in the zone I want it, and my chicks hop right out, neither sticky nor drowned.
     
  3. chickychicka

    chickychicka Out Of The Brooder

    49
    1
    41
    May 16, 2012
    Italy, Europe
    Thanks, that's what I did and this morning I had 2 chicks hatch! One more is pipped since last night, it's moving here and there as the hatched chicks "wake it up". The other eggs are still quiet. What an adventure! The brooder is all set up, I just don't want to open the bator while one egg's pipped!
    :)
     
  4. HEChicken

    HEChicken Overrun With Chickens

    7,544
    174
    316
    Aug 12, 2009
    BuCo, KS
    My Coop
    Congratulations on the hatched chicks! I agree about not opening the incubator while there are any eggs that are pipped. The hatched chicks will be fine for up to 3 days, although you shouldn't need to leave them in there that long.
     
  5. chickychicka

    chickychicka Out Of The Brooder

    49
    1
    41
    May 16, 2012
    Italy, Europe
    3 chicks! #3 emerged from the egg last night. I took all 3 baby chicks out this morning, they look great, strong, are eating and still get only water by me dipping their beaks; the remaining 4 eggs have not shown a sign of life since last night though (humidity between 67-72%), when they got rolled around quite a bit by the 2 first hatched rascals. I hope nothing got damaged, I'll wait and stop looking. It's Nature's turn to decide what's gonna happen.
    What do you think? The 3 hatched chicks had started pipping on day 19, zipping on day 20 and hatched also on day 20. Today is day 21 and nothing happened in the brooder at all. They were all moving inside their shell though when I candled before lockdown, and at least one was moving inside its egg last night. I am not too confident but I won't touch and just wait it out a few more days.
    Thanks for the replies!
     
  6. HEChicken

    HEChicken Overrun With Chickens

    7,544
    174
    316
    Aug 12, 2009
    BuCo, KS
    My Coop
    Congrats on the three chicks. It can be frustrating when some are that far behind the others, but I agree it would be best to wait a little longer and hope the rest of them pip soon.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by