HELP! What went wrong? (WARNING: Graphic pictures)

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by NoVA Chicks, Oct 24, 2009.

  1. NoVA Chicks

    NoVA Chicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 6, 2009
    Falls Church, VA
    My hatch was due on Wednesday. I originally set 14 eggs. Last Friday I took out 7 (mostly non-starters but a couple of early quitters) and was left with 7 going into lockdown. I saw definite movement in two of them. Well, Wednesday came and went with no peeping, no pips, no rocking. Thursday, too. So today I officially gave up and cracked my eggs to try to figure out what happened.

    As I went into lockdown I was concerned that my humidity seemed too low and I added more water. When they didn't hatch I was afraid I added too much water. After having de-shelled my little guys, I'm completely confused. It looks like the air cells were huge--which would be a sign of low humidity, right? The most advanced little guy looks like he got through the membrane but was stuck to his shell--which is again a sign of low humidity. I filled up all of the water reservoirs in the incubator. Next time, should I throw a couple of sponges in there, too?

    Any advice is greatly appreciated. I'm planning on trying one more time. I should be setting on Wednesday or Thursday next week.

    The little guy who got through his membrane:
    [​IMG]

    I tried to get him out of his shell to see if he was fully developed but he was stuck to the membrane. :-(
    [​IMG]

    The air cells seem huge.
    [​IMG]

    Partially digested yolk? I'm not sure what I'm looking at. This little guy seemed fully developed.
    [​IMG]
     
  2. Germaine_11.20

    Germaine_11.20 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 6, 2009
    Idaho
    What kind of incubator are you using and what temperature and humidity also. We need to know actual numbers to be able to help you figure it out.
     
  3. Akane

    Akane Overrun With Chickens

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    It seems like a lot of moisture there for low humidity but it could just be the pics. Where was he stuck to the membrane? If it was hard to pull his bottom out that's normal. The yolk sac is attached to the membrane until it is absorbed. If he was stuck elsewhere then maybe it was low humidity. Also sometimes a chick will die when the humidity is at one point and you don't realize it until you alter the humidity so it may look like the membrane was dry or too wet when it was the opposite at the time the chick died. If the air sacs are very big then it means your humidity was low through most of the hatch. You needed to keep it higher.

    Have you tested your hygrometer? http://exoticpets.about.com/od/herpresources/ss/hygrometer.htm
     
  4. NoVA Chicks

    NoVA Chicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 6, 2009
    Falls Church, VA
    The incubator is a LG still air and the temp dipped to 99 a couple of times but I was generally able to keep it around 101. I'm going to go out tomorrow and buy a computer fan to install to help with the temp. I think with the fan I need to keep it at 100?

    The little guy who tried to pip was mostly stuck around his bottom. The hydrometer was given to me used and I don't think was working. It was basically stuck at 20% no matter what I did. I'm going to try to find a new one at home depot or walmart tomorrow as well. At this point I've spent way too much on this endeavor but it's become a matter of principle now. [​IMG]
     
  5. walkswithdog

    walkswithdog Overrun With Chickens

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    If you pushed your humidity beyond the point that the incubator could ventilate well - you may have simply drowned them. Too little air, too much humidity. It's important to know what the humidity actually is.

    Too much humidity = too little oxygen. And they die in shell.

    You may have run it too low to begin with. Then wayyy over compensated. Calibrate your hygrometer then try again.

    It sucks to have no hatch or one hatch. Hope for better luck for you next time.
     
  6. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    I'm sorry. Looks like too much humidity to me. The unabsorbed yolk is one sign and they are very wet. I'm sorry you lost those, but don't give up! Calibrate your hygrometer and try again.
     
  7. Germaine_11.20

    Germaine_11.20 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 6, 2009
    Idaho
    I believe that with still air incubators you are supposed to have the temp about 102. With air forced (which you will have if you install the fan) then keep it between 99.5 and 100.5 (100 will be fine) It is not always easy to regulate and they will go up and down a little when the fan comes on and shuts off.

    You really need a good hygrometer. At this point even a cheap one. Walmart has the Accurite ones for about ten dollars. They keep them by the indoor/outdoor thermometers.

    I had to laugh at the "matter of principle" I know how you feel.

    If they made it to lockdown then the problem probably lies in the last three days. Most likely the humidity. You need about 65% at lockdown. Some people use more, some people use less. When you add water, add warm water and add it through the top vent hole. (Also leave the vent plug out for extra oxygen) I like to place a sponge directly below the hole. Then when I add the water, it goes onto the sponge.

    My other thought is that your temperature was too low. If you only had it at 100 then they probably needed more time to hatch out. The last picture looks like the chick was not fully developed.

    Next time you set them send a post for advice if you are needing help. Then we can all brainstorm together.
     
  8. pips&peeps

    pips&peeps There is no "I" in Ameraucana

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    Just from the amount of moisture inside the shell and on the chick, I would say too high humidity and they drown when they pipped internally.
     
  9. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    I agree, too high of humidity and if you have no fan, temps should be around 102 at the top of the egg. If they were too dry, the membrane would be rice paper white. Just right would be a damp chick with no fluid floating about. With a fan, temps should be around 99.5

    I'd check the thermometer too just in case, as if the temp was a degree too low on average, then they could have slowed down to the point to fully develop, but just not make it out.
     
  10. NoVA Chicks

    NoVA Chicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 6, 2009
    Falls Church, VA
    I'm confused about the membrane--there seemed to be two? One right under the shell that was thick and white and kind of felt like skin and a very thin clear one next to the chick itself.
     

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