Hatching help


8 Years
Jan 15, 2012
I have a chick that pipped through her shell almost 24 hours ago but the hole is no bigger than when she started. She is alive but the membrane looks like it is starting to dry out. Do I leave her or help her? I am afraid after this long if I leave her to try to do break out on her own she is going to die since it has been so long already.
Technically speaking you should never help chick out of its shell. Hatching is a "test" of fitness. If it can't get out of the egg then it is too weak to live and may even die when it gets older.

With this being said however, i raise just a backyard flock that i like to look at. I do it as a hobby. If i see a chick needs help, i usually help it out a little bit. Ill wiggle the egg to wake the chick up and get it moving. You can also try putting just a little water on it so relubricate the membrane. I actually fully helped a chick out before and she is still alive today and laying eggs. It all depends on your opinion.

If i were you, i would wiggle the egg a little and maybe even open the hole slightly more. Wait a little bit more to see if the chick tries to get out. Just my opinion and technically not the right action but whatever.
I would use my fingernail to pull off the tiny bits of shell around where the chick has peeped. I would lay a warm damp paper towel loosely over the egg. If no more progress in 6-8 hours I intervene again.
Something has to be done at this point. Usually when this happens, I go ahead and wet my hands and wet the membrane and I crack the shell and pull some of it off. But I leave some so the chick can bust out the rest of the way on its own. However most of the time this fails and the chick ends up really weak or dying. You can try this though. Good luck
The membrane was dry and stuck to her so she was unable to move. I went ahead and intervened, pulling back pieces of the shell and dry membrane. I left a little over half so she still needed work to do to get out. Fingers crossed the she will survive but I know at this point if I had done nothing she would not have had a chance. Thanks everyone for your replies.

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