Help! My chicks aren't hatching!

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Vrune, Feb 10, 2009.

  1. Vrune

    Vrune Out Of The Brooder

    Feb 10, 2009
    I could really do with any advice you can give me. I'm a second grade teacher and my class are hatching chickens as part of their science class. We've been really meticulous about turning them regularly and they were due to hatch today. We hadn't touched them for the last three days and thought we should see some movement. This morning one of them pipped and the crack had started to get bigger. But, the principal came in and decided to turn the egg around so that people could watch it hatch! This really bothered me because I figured the chick had got into the position best for it to hatch and turning it would only mess it up. There was no more movement from it all day and I found out this afternoon that the principal came in with a pair of tweezers to "help" the chick out. She removed part of the shell and then replaced it. She didn't rupture the membrane underneath but there has been no movement from the egg for many hours. I'm really really worried. There isn't even sign of pipping on any of the other eggs. Surely there should be some sign of life from them by now? There's no peeping or anything. Do you think our chicks are dead? We have eight eggs. At what stage can you be certain that they're just not going to hatch? Should I do anything to the one that pipped (I'm almost certain I saw a bit of yellow move inside a while ago but it could be wishful thinking..). Any advice you can give me would be really really appreciated! I really don't want to have to tell my second graders that we lost all our little chicks....
  2. ThreeBoysChicks

    ThreeBoysChicks Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 19, 2007
    Thurmont, MD
    What is your humidity?

    I am new to the incubating, but what I know is don't touch them. Leave the bator closed and give them time.

    Had you candled them? Are you sure they were developing?
  3. futurefarmer08

    futurefarmer08 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 29, 2008
    near Sac. Ca
    Have you been able to tell if there are any noises coming from the eggs?
  4. marlin

    marlin Out Of The Brooder

    May 1, 2008
    Grand Bay, Alabama
    I agree having to tell them that would be horrible.The wait is the hardest part.Opening the incubator during the hatching process is one of the most common mistakes. Sudden changes in humidity and temp is a killer. Give it another day or so dont open the incubator and lock the principal out!!
  5. Bock_Bock

    Bock_Bock Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 13, 2008
    Hayward, Ca
    first of all what type of bator, what was the day they were set, what is the temp, and what is the humidity, and like the other people said have you candled to make sure all the eggs were fertile?
  6. Tuffoldhen

    Tuffoldhen Flock Mistress

    Jan 30, 2007
    When chicks pip their shells it takes 24 hours or longer sometimes for them to hatch out. They are learning to breathe, resting and finishing absorbing the yolk sac. Opening the bator and pulling shell off a new pip can only lead to a ruined hatch from that chick and sometimes for all the rest of the hatch. my 2 cents [​IMG]

  7. Vrune

    Vrune Out Of The Brooder

    Feb 10, 2009
    The school's science teacher actually set up the whole thing, it was her first time hatching too though. The incubator was one that a parent made a few years ago and had been used successfully before. The temperature had been consistent at 100.5. There wasn't anything to measure the humidity but there had been a paper cup of water left in the incubator. There hasn't been any sound at all from any of the eggs. We didn't candle any of the eggs.. I guess we made a lot of mistakes... [​IMG]
  8. FrenchHen

    FrenchHen Chicken Ambassador

    Jan 26, 2009
    Bagshot Row
    I'm sorry you're going through this. We're going to see if we can hatch soon. It's hard when there are kids involved.

    Maybe you can set it up again?
  9. Bock_Bock

    Bock_Bock Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 13, 2008
    Hayward, Ca
    Quote:im not sure if you or the person knows this but the humidity is caused by how deep the water is but by how much surface area it has, so if you just had a small cup of water in there it could be all your chicks dried up inside but for precautional messures i would find a sponge somewhere soak it in hot water and put it in the bater just to make sure the humidity is high enough i don think a cup with water in it will be enough surface area, but that is just my opinion, and i just learned the hard way about humidity i let me water dry out and i believed i may have killed the rest of my eggs to so look at this as a learning experiance, but here is to still having atleast 1 hatch [​IMG]
  10. william9792

    william9792 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 23, 2008
    graham, nc
    hello i am so sorry you are having a hard time, but i will tell you how to have a sucessful hatch the way i do. now i am in NC and this is how it works for me, and other people do it some what different. first i try to think like a mother hen. i use the same incubators all the time, two homemade and one LG and one Hova. the first thing i do is get my temps at 99.5, and then my humidty at 35-40%, i let the incubator run for two days and check to see that it holds the temp and humidty ( my incubators are always at those temps) once they will hold the temp and humidty i set the eggs in the alto turners (if you do not have and alto turner you can use cardboard cartons with a dime size hole cut out in each egg hole, and top cut off of carton) and you would place a brick under outside of one side of incubator, then when it come time to turn eggs move brick to other side. ( and place a sponge in incubator to hold the water for humidty.) i turn eggs for days 1-18, keep temps at 99.5 days 1-21, keep humitdy at 35 to 40% days 1-18. after morning turn on day 18, i stop turning eggs ( if you have alto turner take it out and place eggs in cardboard cartons with dime size hiles cut in them) ( if in cardboard cartons leave them in cartons) and place sponge number two in incubator, bring humitdy up to 50-55% and keep it there till all eggs have hatched, ( can take up to 23 days for all eggs to hatch) DO NOT OPEN THE INCUBATOR TILL ALL EGGS HAVE HATCHED!!!!if you have to add water on days 19-21, get a small hose ( air line tube) and fill with tube to sponge. chicks can live in incubator for 72 hours after hatch without food or water. now for the candling, i candle on days 10 and then one more time on day 18 when i move them from the turner. can not say this will work for everone, but i hatch about 100 to 150 chicks a month, sometimes more and have a 95 to 98 hatch rate. if i can be of any help you can pm me or e-mail me.
    sorry this was so long but this works for me, good luck william thompson

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