How Do You Get Back on the Horse?


10 Years
Mar 9, 2009
We had a big clutch that was infertile (I discovered after hen brooded for days). She went broody on a new clutch, and I tossed most of them, thinking they weren't viable (they were). She's down to only 3 eggs, 2 of which looked good 2 days ago for sure, but we're late and no hatch. I'm getting very pessimistic about any success. I have eggs in the bator which look great but now of course I completely doubt my candling skill- the ones that aren't hatching looked good too. After pouring so much heart and energy into this, as you all do, how do you keep going after setbacks? I feel like chucking it all, apologizing to the kids that it didn't work out, having a pity party and burning the incubator. Instead of feeling the joy of watching new life, I'm experiencing the misery of fading life and wondering about my own hand in it. How do you get sustain, or get back, what you need to try it all again?



11 Years
Jul 13, 2008
Kendall/DeKalb County IL
We all have set backs. Some big and some small. I just had a bad hatch. None hatched. I have a new hatch hatching today. 2 so far. When you get it right and see the fuzzy butts it is all worth it.


Wanna-be Farmer
11 Years
Dec 16, 2008
I would get some local eggs or your own (dont have them shipped) and dont candle just wait out the 21 days doing everything else you should. btw what incubator do you have?


10 Years
Mar 9, 2009
They're our eggs. Our incubator is not particularly grand- a Little Giant still air. If I don't get a successful hatch, I will save it as a back-up but get a forced air with turner.

I think you're right about candling. I read so much about catching eggs as soon as they turn bad that I was overzealous during my culling process. I think if I get a turner and don't candle, I won't be so obsessed and negative outcomes won't be hard to take.

Hey, thanks for the perspective!


Farm Frenzy

11 Years
Dec 16, 2008
Oak Hill, Florida
Trust me...I am queen of disasters. You just have to take the good with the bad...EVEN THOUGH IT SUCKS...and try again. Next time try to keep records of everday of the hatch, so then next time you can see what went good and bad, and learn from the mistakes. That's all we can really do. My reasoning is, if it doesn't make it, it wasn't supposed to be here.


11 Years
Jul 17, 2008
DC Region
Hang in there. I lost our first hatch managed to salvage one. Keep trying, use your own eggs, try to leave them alone. Eventually everyone gets a feel for it. I know a few folks who tried four or six or more times before it just sort of began to work. I hope that's not me, if it is, I'm going to keep trying. Some people seem to do it and it just goes. That's not me.

But I'll get there and I'll use my own eggs while I'm learning or eggs from people who have offered them (neighbors). If you tell folks around you that you need hatching practice usually they line up out the door to help.
Almost everybody has bad batches, HECK the major hatcheries LOSE tons of chicks in the hundreds at a time.

The first two times I ordered partridge rocks last year, the hatchery had to call and cancel because the hatch failed.

You are NOT alone. You can learn to do it. They're not lives hon, they're potential. If they don't go, they never know it. Only you do, only you hurt. And it shouldn't be a big thing, broodies flub it up all the time. Nature happens. Don't kick yourself.

Take notes and persist, it'll come.


Poultry Princess
11 Years
Jul 16, 2008
North-West Georgia
You really do have to sort of "get use to" the idea that not every hatch is going to go well. I have had many many flops in my time but the good ones fare outweigh the bad and make every moment worth it! Just hang in there and learn from your mistakes. I think when first starting we all get a little overboard on how much we need to do and how much help we need to be. The reality is, mother nature does not need our help. Patience, Grasshopper

This is the best approach to hatching eggs from my point of view.
Good luck with your next attempt.


Flock Mistress
12 Years
Jan 30, 2007

This sums it up!! We all have these hatches over the years! Just get back up there on that horse and ride!!!
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11 Years
Nov 21, 2008
New Mexico
My first hatch was a dismal failure. I bought the expensive eggs too. It really sucked. My second hatch is now pipping and so far it's a much better hatch. I have 1 chicks out and 6 more eggs with pips. I'm very excited and nervous... the next day or two are going to be torture. I'm trying not to "help" at all. I know we arent supposed to help out but man oh man this is tough. I've had one egg thats been piped for nearly 24 hours and it's in the middle of the egg. I'm not sure the chick is alive or dead and I'm dying to open up the bator and help it out.
I think patience is the key here. Well that and making sure your humidity is correct for your area. I found out with my first batch of eggs that I need to incubate with a fairly high humidity.


Positively Ducky
11 Years
Oct 2, 2008
My first hatch started with 6 eggs. Well, some cracked, one started to smell funny and was obviously bad, and then there was the dreaded blood rings.

After all that hassle, I got this...

This little bugger took 3 days to hatch out with me not sleeping much the whole time. It's been almost a week and I am STILL tired, but it was so totally worth it

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