Help!!! Chicks are hatching before lockdown!!! Turner is still in!


Crazy for Cochins
10 Years
Apr 24, 2009
Tab, Indiana
Ok so my DD went into my room because our cat was in there and she heard peeping coming from the bator with our Marans eggs in it. Impossible, they don't even go into lockdown til tonight!!! But yup! There was a baby! The turner was still plugged in and I raced in there with my older DD and we managed to get the little chick unstuck from the back of the turner. Well, I have a bunch more zipping now! What should I do? Do I leave the turner in there? Do I remove it? I'm worried because I don't want these chicks to die!!! The little chick that already hatched is healthy and fine. But I have a bunch more that are pipped and another one or two are zipping!!! I don't want to open the bator too much and lower the humidity, these chicks mean a lot to me! Help, anyone?! I'm panicking here...
Crazy! I had a similar thing happen in my new Dickey incubator. I forgot to move a handful of eggs to the hatcher and babies hatched while in the tilting trays. One did get crushed by shifting egg trays, but 2 were fine. I moved the other eggs to the hatcher. The pipped one hatched okay. Those that hadn't pipped still haven't pipped.

People hatch eggs sitting up in cartons. I haven't tried it, but it seems if you just shut off the turner, they may be okay. You will have to watch that they don't get their legs stuck or twisted in it, though. That is what would worry me.
What scares me is that the little one that hatched, his head AND a leg were trapped. I got him unstuck, panicked when I wasn't getting an answer fast enough here, so I asked in chat, and people told me to remove the turner since the chick hatched out the bottom of the egg! So I pulled the turner and added in a hot wash cloth to the back of the bator. I laid the eggs down carefully and I was in and out of the bator in about 20 seconds. My older DD helped me, so it went faster. The little guy's leg was so stuck I was afraid it would break, and it took a bit to bend the last rack to get it's head unstuck. I didn't want to risk my babies dying because they decided to hatch 4 days early! Little boogers...
With any luck you may only have a couple hatching early, i have had this happen when setting 270 eggs in a sportsman, one hatch 2 days before lockdown, the rest hatched on time.

I waited for the piped one to hatch and then did the transfer.

I also had this happen with my guinea eggs they were hatching like popcorn 2 days before lockdown, but they were in my hovabator, i turned off the turner and ended up having to take the turner out, i only lost 5 out of 42 ,just try to wait till the piped ones hatch then move them out of the turner.

Just take a deep breath, it's gona be ok

Oh I'm glad I'm not alone in this. They actually had me momentarily doubting myself as to when lockdown should be! I was told that because of the thick shells Marans can take a little longer to hatch, and the last Marans I hatched out did indeed take an extra 2 days (2 BCM and 2 CM). But I guess these guys were in a hurry to hatch. I'm glad to have them, I just didn't want them getting hurt! Maybe lockdown should be at Day 17?
I had a batch of eggs that were due to go into lockdown last Tuesday night and when I was bringing the other incubator (that I use for hatching) into the room I could hear loud peeping
!! One chick was already pipping!!!
I immediately shut the turner off and quickly set up the hatcher. I added very warm water to the water wells to help get the humidity up as quickly as possible, took all of the eggs out of the turner and transferred them as fast as possible to the hatcher and shut the lid. It wasn't long before I had a little barred rock chick in there. They all fininished hatching by the next evening. Good luck with your hatch!!

ETA: zazouse--that picture is adorable!!!!!!
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