Help! Ideas, notes or anything on hatched eggs? School project

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by jessbug, Dec 20, 2016.

  1. jessbug

    jessbug New Egg

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    [​IMG]So I am hatching eggs for a school project and need all the help I can get! I know to temp and humidity but what about when they hatch? When should I give them food? Should I give them gravel or something? Should I give them water? Should I leave them in the incubator for a few hours before I put them in the brooding pen? [​IMG] Help a lost 14 year old!
     
  2. BantamLover21

    BantamLover21 Overrun With Chickens

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    How long will you have the chicks after you hatch them (is it a short term project, or do you plan on keeping them?)?

    After day 18 of incubation, increase the humidity to 65-70% and don't open the incubator unless absolutely necessary (or, later, to quickly remove a chick). After a chick hatches, wait until it is almost completely dry and fluffy before moving it to a prepared brooder. If you remove chicks too soon, they may chill easily and the constant opening of the incubator lowers the humidity, making it harder for the other chicks to hatch. I usually take hatched chicks out of the incubator in batches--some may be a little drier than others, but they should all be pretty dry.

    Most of the chicks should hatch around day 21 of incubation. However, don't get rid of any hatched eggs until a few days after that, since some develop slower (or faster) than others.

    The brooder you use may be a cardboard box, plastic tub, or any other secure enclosure with sides and the ability to heat it. Put some safe bedding, usually wood shavings, on the floor of your brooder. Use a heat lamp or other heat source to heat part/all of the brooder to around 95 degrees Fahrenheit at chick-level. Place at least one chick feeder and waterer in the brooder, too.

    If you're hatching bantams, quail, or other smaller birds, you should put some gravel in the waterer to help prevent drowning. Large fowl chicks tend to do okay without gravel in the waterer, but if you want to put gravel in, there is nothing wrong with that. It often helps to get some chick vitamins/electrolytes and mix them into the water, as well. The extra nutrients will help the chicks get off to a great start. Don't forget to dip each chick's beak into the water when placing them in the brooder, too--that will help them find and remember where the water is.

    As for food, purchase some quality chick starter feed, usually with 20-22% protein. Offer the feed at all times. It may take the chicks a little while to figure out how to eat, but that is fine. Before a chick hatches, it absorbs what remains of its egg yolk. The nutrients in the yolk can sustain a newly hatched chick for as long as 2-3 days, though most begin eating sooner.

    Good luck with your project! If you have any more questions, just ask. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2016
  3. EggPlanter

    EggPlanter Chillin' With My Peeps

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    First welcome to BYC!!!
    [​IMG]
    Well, since it seems that BantamLover21 has done a spectacular job at explaining the majority of hatching already, I will just give you a couple other advice/ things to do when hatching chicks. I am not a hatching expert, but i have learned a couple of things along the way. I assume you know about turning the eggs in the incubator, three times a day manually by rolling them to opposite side or leaving them in automatic turner, but if not you can probably find better information in the hatching101 section of BYC. Also another thing to consider is what you are hatching. As BantamLover21 said chicks take 21 days to hatch, but different species such as quail or other birds have different hatching times, so make sure to search the species and amount of days needed to hatch to find out more information. Lockdown is usually three days before hatchday, (so day 18 for chickens as posted above) and not only should humidity be increased, but you should also stop turning the eggs and fight the urge to open the incubator. After the a chick has hatched, I usually wait until the next day (24 hours) before I remove the chickens and place them in the brooder (that's when they are all fluffy and dry). As BantamLover21 said, place gravel in the waterer to prevent drying and you should also make sure to put straw in the brooder. Newspaper can cause chicken leg issues from slipping, hay can choke chicks if they eat it and hamster/animal bedding stuff isn't good for chicks (I think I had a chick die from it once). Something else that is optional is to candle the eggs. Using this method to check fertility and chick growth is exciting (well at least to me), but should only be used a couple times during incubation (days 14 and 18 only or perhaps 7 also. Just remember the more you open the incubator, the less chance of a successful hatch. More on candling eggs can be found on the internet or hatching 101 if needed, but it is really just using a flashlght in the dark on the air sac of the egg to see inside. And...... BantamLover21 has explained a lot already, so hope you have a good and fun hatch. If you need more information or incubation methods the incubating101 section is very helpful or another BYC member may be able to help you better. One other thing, if you thing an egg smells bad and is clear when candling and maybe has bacteria growth, toss it outside as far as you can. Rotten eggs are no joke and aren't fun.
     
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2016
  4. jessbug

    jessbug New Egg

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    Dec 12, 2016
    Thank you! I am doing chicken eggs and no I dont plan on keeping them [​IMG] I have some friends who would like to have them :) At what age should I give them away?
     
  5. EggPlanter

    EggPlanter Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Unfortunately, I am not an expert on giving away chickens (guess I'm kind of a chicken hoarder), but from my experience you can buy chicks at any age. You can give away day old chicks or 6 week old chicks. From my experience I would probably wait at least 2-5 days before giving away as then they have been introduced to chick feed, know how to drink water from waterer and overall have a good feeling for this "new" world. This also allows you some time to make sure they are all healthy. If your friend wants certain gender chicks then I believe you have to wait longer and vent sex them or wing sex(I am not sure how long), but don't quote me on that, if I were you I would search that up and do more research if needed. Hope this helps a little, but if it doesn't I hope someone else can.
     

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