I hear peeps!! (+ a few questions)

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by jimandcaitlin, Jan 9, 2015.

  1. jimandcaitlin

    jimandcaitlin Out Of The Brooder

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    Just had to share. This is our first attempt at hatching eggs. We started with 15 and have 12 on Day 20. This morning I woke up and looked in and noticed one of the eggs has a little crack through it and I can hear peeps!! I'm so excited. Right now, we have removed the little barrier things that kept them lined up and upright for the first part of the incubation, but still have the eggs lined up together. The one hatch seems to have moved itself to the side and a little apart from the rest on it's own overnight (it was on the end anyway by chance). Do I need to spread them out or will they take care of that on their own? Also, should I place them totally on their side or still try to keep them angled down a bit? I added a picture of the current setups. We took out the bars that were in there becuase the instruction manual for the incubator said to do so 2 days before hatching. Should I spread the eggs out more, or how should i position them? The egg on it's side did that on it's own. The two middle ones have also cracked their eggs.
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    Last edited: Jan 9, 2015
  2. MaesMom

    MaesMom Out Of The Brooder

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    It sounds like you have them on a turner, sitting upright? Do they have space to "run around" after they hatch out? If so, so not do anything. If they don't have a place to "begin" to get their feet under them, then yes place them on their sides. It's so exciting to hear those peeps! We just hatched a few, and have some more eggs on order to get going for Spring.

    It's a great day to hatch some chicks!
    MaesMom
     
  3. PD-Riverman

    PD-Riverman Overrun With Chickens

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    In "MY" opinion, after you removed the turner you just need to leave the incubator closed---adding warm water with a straw through a vent hole if needed----not opening it anymore for NOTHING---till they hatch or day 22(for me). Good Luck!!!
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2015
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  4. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

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    I’m not exactly sure what is going on either. If you have removed the turner, how are you keeping them upright? But at least one of them has the freedom to move away from the others before hatch, just from the chick wiggling in the egg, positioning itself to hatch. I’m certainly not sure how you have them.

    Some people hatch with the eggs in cut-out egg cartons. They cut away much of the carton to allow good air circulation around the egg but still keep the egg upright and not moving around. That works fine. Many people lay the eggs down on their sides instead of keeping them upright. That’s the way the instructions that came with my incubator said to do it and that has always worked for me. Either way works. The eggs will still hatch. Like many things with chickens, people care about this a lot more than the chicks do.

    When the chick positions itself to hatch inside the shell, it will wiggle and may roll around some if it is free to roll. When a chick hatches, it will crawl around and knock the other eggs all over the place, playing rugby with them. That’s generally not a big deal though some people really worry a lot over it.

    When the chick hatches it first punches a hole in the shell to breathe through, then eventually zips a line all around the shell so it can push the shell apart. I don’t know how you are holding them upright but as long as it can zip and push that shell apart they will be OK.

    It is possible that the chick will shrink wrap if you open the incubator after an external pip. Possible does not mean it will happen each and every time without fail. Most of the time it doesn’t happen. But since it is possible it is good practice to not open the incubator after the hatch has started without a good reason. Shrink wrap means the membrane around the chick dries out and shrinks around it, imprisoning it so it cannot move to hatch. That is fatal unless you intervene. I don’t open the incubator after the hatch has started until the hatch is over unless I have an emergency in there that I consider worth the risk.

    An example of an emergency I consider worth the risk of opening the incubator. In all the years I’ve been doing this, one time and only one time I had half an egg shell from a previously hatched chick cup itself around an unhatched egg, covering it so the egg could not pip or zip if the chick inside decided to come out under that half-shell. I opened the incubator and removed that shell. I did not shrink wrap any chicks that time, though several had pipped.

    Another time for a different emergency I did shrink wrap a chick by opening the incubator so I know it is possible to shrink wrap a chick, but that is the only one that I have shrink wrapped and I’ve opened the incubator a few times.

    Without knowing how you are supporting them upright, my suggestion is to leave them alone and interfere with the hatch as little as you can. But I sure wish I knew how you are holding them upright.

    Good luck!
     
  5. jimandcaitlin

    jimandcaitlin Out Of The Brooder

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    I hadn't seen your reply before I took the picture, so hopefully I didn't shrink wrap them by taking the lid off. How will I know if I did?
     
  6. AmyLynn2374

    AmyLynn2374 Humidity Queen

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    They look ok. Generally when I move mine out of the turner I give the eggs more space, but considering you are already in lockdown and you have eggs pipping I would leave them to do their thing. They will probably rock into each other more because they are closer together, but that won't hurt anything. For next time though, I would not prop them against each as it looks a few are, (might just be the pic) and lay them flat with a bit more space. Good luck on the hatch!
     
  7. jimandcaitlin

    jimandcaitlin Out Of The Brooder

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    So what if I mist the eggs with a spray bottle through the vent hole
     
  8. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

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    Knowing what is going on inside the egg is difficult. Some chicks will zip and come out a couple of hours after pip, some can go more than a day and a half between pip and zip. Before they hatch a chick needs to do a lot of work to get ready. They need to absorb the yolk, absorb blood and dry up the blood vessels outside their body, do something with that gunk they have been living in so they dry out nice and fluffy instead of the down being gunked down, and who knows what else. Some do a lot of this before they pip but some don’t. If you try to help before the chick is ready to hatch you will probably do a lot more harm than good. A lot of the chicks we try to help hatch don’t make it.

    I don’t know of any easy way to tell if a chick is shrink wrapped or not. When the chick pips you will often see the beak in the hole, nor always but often. The beak will often move as it breathes so you at least know it is still alive. It may be getting ready to hatch or it may be in trouble, though probably it is just getting ready to hatch. Don’t worry at this phase even if it has been over a day in this condition.

    If a chick is shrink wrapped the membrane at that hole will look white and maybe a bit wrinkled. It take some experience to know the difference between normal and when it is a problem. If you ever see a yellow foam coming out of the hole, it is now or never. That is a critical situation. But a chick absorbs the yolk before it hatches and can go for a very long time before it needs to eat or drink. As long as that yellow foam doesn’t show up it can go a really long time.

    The odds are you did not shrink wrap a chick. It really doesn’t happen that often. All I can suggest is that you watch them and use your judgment. Patience is usually your best friend in these situations. Impatience often leads to disaster. You normally do a lot more harm if you interfere.

    I’ll try one more time. Opening the incubator like that is not an automatic disaster. The odds are really good that you did absolutely no harm. Don’t panic. Those pips look tiny. Not much moisture was lost through them. Those have not pipped enough yet to even see the beak. It is early.

    It looks like the eggs are just leaning against each other. I’d leave them alone. When they start hatching they will be scattered all over the place.
     
  9. jimandcaitlin

    jimandcaitlin Out Of The Brooder

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    Well one just hatched!! Quick question. Almost immediatly after the hatch, the humidity shot up from 70% to 85%, without me diong anything. Is that normal and is it ok? Thanks!
     
  10. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

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    Perfectly normal and to be expected.
     

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