Hello I'm new but in desperate need of advice before it's too late!


8 Years
May 26, 2011
Hello fellow chicken lovers

I'm sorry to burst in so rudely asking for help but I am in a real pickle here and desperate to know what to do for the best - my bantam Primrose was sitting on 9 eggs and usually she never manages to hatch any but this time I candled them and a couple looked like they might have life in them, I was so excited I am sorry to say I foolishly took them away from her the next day because she was sitting in a different nest box (although they were still warm) and because of her previous lack of success at hatching, and I put them in my incubator. They are not her eggs, they were laid by my other hen who is a Rhode Island Red, hatched about 4 years ago in the same incubator. The trouble is I now realise I have no idea how long she has been sitting on them, there are 2 possibly 3 fertile ones, and I am worried because I don't know what stage of development they are at and so I don't know when to stop turning them, ie when they will reach day 18. One of them looks quite well developed, it is just solid darkness when I candle it, with a well defined air sac which seems quite large, I can't detect any movement though but maybe that is because there is no room for the chick to move now? Would it harm the chick if there is one in there and it keeps being "rocked" by the incubator until hatching day? The incubator is an old Brinsea octagon, quite a basic thing I think, it was given to me by a builder who also gave me the rhode island red eggs, there were 8 of them and 6 hatched so it must have been fairly ok. i don't actually turn the eggs myself, the incubator slowly rocks from side to side all the time. If anyone can advise I would be so grateful. I am in Suffolk, England.

I forgot to say the three eggs are at different stages so I know I still need to keep the two less developed ones turning. Does anyone know what would happen if I stopped turning the most developed one (egg 1) now by switching the incubator's rocking motion off and it was at, say, day 15, but kept turning the other two eggs manually?

Many hopeful thanks,

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I might be wrong but I say sit on your hands. No matter how long she was on them and if there is movement when the time is right they will hatch. Watch tv go shopping. If I am giving the wrong advice I aplogize. Hopefull someone with more experience will help you. Oh and
Oh and you are not rude.
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Oh thank you terrilhb! I hope you are right. I am thinking/hoping that the movement of the incubator is so gentle that surely it can't really do any harm? Perhaps, as you say, someone else will advise if they know better than us. Thank you for your welcome by the way. I am amazed and delighted at how quickly I received a reply!
Since I am a hatchaholic and have lots of eggs due on different dates.. I have.. on two separate occassions.. missed one.. it rocked along in the turner and hatched just fine
hi hows it goin.
I'm new to this site to but if i was you i would leave the rocker on untill you see the first chip in the egg. Iv only hatched 2 sets of 24 eggs in my incubater so im pritty new to it all really. I have 14 light sussex chicks in my garden shed there only 2 weeks old, also got along side my lot 11 light sussex chicks that are 1 week old that ar me mates chicks but the hen that hatched them out died the day she hatched them
out so iv taken them under my wings lol.

Hope it all works out for you, please keep use posted on how they get along.

Terri you're right, this site is awesome!

Thanks Phil and Shelly for your advice too, you have reassured me and I will keep my fingers crossed and leave everything alone until I see a little chip appear!

Shelly I can totally see how you become a hatchaholic, I am constantly fighting it

Phil good luck with all your chicks! So sorry to hear about your friend's hen who died, that's really sad, bless her

I will definitely keep you posted on how it all goes... here's hoping


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