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First time hatching in an incubator...they're hatching, now what?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by chickmomma5683, Jan 9, 2017.

  1. chickmomma5683

    chickmomma5683 Just Hatched

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    Dec 14, 2016
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    I'm a first time hatching momma and I have my first batch of eggs beginning to hatch tonight in the incubator! Now what do I do? Leave them in there for a day to dry? Do I put food or water in there for them? I have other eggs still in there that aren't due to hatch for another week or so, will they break those? The others that still have a week to go are still on the egg turner in the same incubator...the ones hatching now are no longer on the turner, I took them off 3 days before estimated hatch date. What do I do with them immediately after they hatch?
     
  2. chippy99th

    chippy99th Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm not really the best qualified to answer as I've only ever done an artificial hatching once, in emergency after the hen started destroying the eggs the day they were due to hatch. But here's my two cents.

    If a hen was sitting on your eggs, she probably (hopefully) would not get up until all the eggs hatched, meaning some chicks would hatch earlier and wait a while, even a day or so, before getting a chance to eat or drink. This is normal. The chicks will not break the other eggs, and they do not need to eat immediately. The important thing is that they keep warm. They will dry and fluff up in a couple hours.

    You can probably read about what others have done on this site, but I don't think it's necessary to remove them from the incubator just yet. Me, I'd at least let them fluff up before I put them in the brooder. I might even wait until they'd all hatched, depending on how long it took the later ones. If it takes longer than a day for all of them to hatch, move the ones that have hatched at that point into the brooder and show them how to eat and drink. Dip their beaks gently into the water and "peck" at the food with your finger to do this.

    Good luck! Having new babies is so fun. Even cooler when you get to watch them come into the world. The one time I got to do that was probably my most amazing chicken experience so far. :)
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2017
    1 person likes this.
  3. Justjered

    Justjered Chillin' With My Peeps

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    from experience and causing 6-7 chicks to die in egg.. Leave the hatched ones in the incubator and DO NOT open it up...

    It causes the chicks to get shrink wrapped and die in egg..

    The already hatched chicks can be left in the incubator for 2-3 days without food or water. So leave them in there and let the other eggs hatch...
     
    1 person likes this.
  4. chippy99th

    chippy99th Chillin' With My Peeps

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    There you go then! That's really interesting, Justjered (and sad, too).
     
  5. chickmomma5683

    chickmomma5683 Just Hatched

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    Dec 14, 2016
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    ok thanks. I hope I haven't already hurt the others, I opened it and put water in today before I noticed the egg had started to crack and heard a peeping. I appreciate the advice.
     
  6. chippy99th

    chippy99th Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Okay, Justjered, I'm genuinely curious now. What do you think causes the shrink-wrapping? Is it the sudden change in humidity? That's the only thing I could think. I've never used an incubator and only had to take the eggs from a hen once, as I said before, so I've really not had much experience with the process beyond watching my girls do their stuff.
     
  7. Justjered

    Justjered Chillin' With My Peeps

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    [​IMG]

    Yes. The drop in humidity caused the membrane to shrink and makes the chick stuck so it can't move to pip. It'll usually poke a pip hole that grows in size but can't move to zip any of the rest of the shell and dies.


    I opened mine 2x during lock down and lost more than half of my viable chicks because of it.
     
  8. chippy99th

    chippy99th Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Wow, that's so sad! Thanks for the pic though.
     
  9. Justjered

    Justjered Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yea. Was pretty horrible feeling when I realized what happened. We lost 2 serama that were fully developed and I think 6 or 7 silkies. :(

    Luckily we have 5 that made it total but I will never ever open the incubator during lockdown again.
     
  10. chickmomma5683

    chickmomma5683 Just Hatched

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    If they haven't pipped a hole yet this won't happen though right? I took the first chick out yesterday bc none of the others had pipped yet and added more water to the incubator.
     

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