Hatching Quail eggs day 19 no movement


Oct 12, 2019
Hi all, new here :)

I've been incubating some quail eggs I bought from the shops (Saw a few of the Youtube videos saying this was possible!) Thought it would be a good experiment. This is my first time incubating quail eggs.
I started out with 33 eggs, was candling a quite a few and couldn't see anything growing after day 8-9. I decided I didn't want to waste electricity for the next 10 days running an incubator if they weren't even fertilized. So I decided to start cracking them open and seeing if I was wasting my time/electricity. The 20'th egg in, and I finally found a little embryo, blood vessels still moving and everything. So I stopped there and left the remaining 11 eggs. (feel a bit bad about the little guy/gal I cracked).
Locked them down on day 14, candled them all and some had growth/ looked quite dark in comparison to others. Put them all in.
Now it's day 19 and still no movement :/. I wonder if I cracked open the only fertilized/viable egg in the whole bunch!
Temps 'til lockdown: 37.5 degrees c.
Humidity 'til lockdown: 45-55%

Temps in lockdown: 37.5 degrees
Humidity in lockdown: 61-68%

Haven't opened incubator since day 14.

Potential problems:
I really have no idea what breed of quail they are, I'm assuming Coturnix. But they were bought for eating from a butcher shop!
Also I'm using one of those cheap 'no-brand' incubators from Ebay. So I guess that could be a problem too, and my other thermometer broke, so I haven't been able to check if temp readings re correct.

So my questions are:
Is it normal to not see any movement at day 19?
What should the temperature & humidity be in lockdown? I'm reading all different numbers on different forums :p!

Thanks for any help/advice!
here's a pick of 6 of the eggs (the other 5 are too hard to photograph due to condensation on the covering). Hope this helps with ID.



Fluffy Dinosaur Breeder
Premium member
May 25, 2019
There are some others here that can probably give better advice but I'll pop my little bit of knowledge here!

Firstly, have you candled the eggs? Or only cracked a few open to check?

When candling them just before the lockdown stage, the whole egg should be very dark inside with only the air sac at the thick end visible.

When candling at that stage, if the light goes all the way through, it isn't fertile. Some also quit early so it's a good way to check for that too.

As for your temperatures and humidity, they seem fine to me at both stages. I have mine at 37.5 degrees and 45% humidity then at lockdown it goes to 37.5 degrees and 65% humidity. Has worked a treat when hatching mine.

Those eggs will be Coturnix/Japanese Quail :)

How often have you been turning the eggs also?

Usually mine begin to hatch day 18, occasionally 19 but never later. Not seeing any movement at all on day 19 is telling me something is going on.


Oct 12, 2019
Thanks everyone,
The incubator came with an automatic egg turner, so they were turning every 2 hours 'til day 14.
On day 14 I candled the remaining ones and some didn't have much light shining through (although it was really hard to candle them! due to their fiddlyness & mottled colours) Some definitely had a bit of red, but weren't dark. Like a pink light shining through.

The reason I started cracking them (around day 8-9) was because I had candled quite a few and there was a lot of light shining through, was thinking they were all duds.
The candler I'm using was designed for chicken eggs though and It's hard to stop light eggscaping (ha ha ;)) around the edges.

Quail_kid, yeah I hope I didn't crack the only one!


Oct 12, 2019
Thanks peeps! It's at day 20-21 now, I think they won't hatch.
I'm keeping them in overnight because one of them doesn't let any light shine through, so maybe it could hatch really really late? I guess it's good to be optimistic!

In a few days I'll crack the unhatched eggs and see if anything at all had grown :).
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