If you need to help a chick during lockdown... (Tip that helped me!)

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by SilverPhoenix, Sep 30, 2010.

  1. SilverPhoenix

    SilverPhoenix Bantam Fanatic

    Dec 15, 2009
    Penn Valley, CA
    I just wanted to share a tip I picked up in some thread or another on here, because I think this is really the way to help a chick that needs help during lockdown without compromising the hatch. [​IMG] I hope it helps some of you out, too!

    First off, no matter how much of a worrywort you are, try NOT to open the incubator during lockdown if you can help it! I generally wait 24-36 hours to help a chick that's hatching if something seems wrong. Now, if there's blood or a chick needs help immediately for some reason that's a different matter, but if we're just talking "The baby hasn't made any progress," really, it's better to just wait and see what it does on my own. My experience is that, if a chick has made absolutely no progress after twenty-four to thirty-six hours have passed since pipping or zipping, it's worth your while to see what's up. Others may disagree, but I've saved a few perfectly healthy chicks who just were stuck for whatever reason several times now and I feel it would've been a shame to just let them die. It was usually just from incubation errors or little flukes, nothing worth losing the chick over by refusing to help.

    If you're going to open the incubator during lockdown (for any reason), DO THIS FIRST:

    1. Go in the bathroom, close the door, and run a hot shower. Do it until the bathroom gets very humid. Plugging the bath helps make it more humid if you have any trouble.

    2. Unplug the incubator, bring it in the humid bathroom, quickly close the door behind you (if too much humidity escapes let it build up some more first), and open it in there. Scoop out any chicks or eggs that need help quickly, and close it back up.

    3. Bring the incubator back where it belongs and plug it back in.

    4. Do whatever you need to do with chicks that need help!

    If you get it humid enough in the bathroom, the humidity in the incubator should not drop at all when you open it up. Mine actually rose just a few percent, which was fine because I keep my humidity on the lower end.

    I hope this tip helps someone out there! I know it helped me, and I feel like I can have some peace of mind during lockdown, knowing that if I need to open the incubator I have a safe way to do it that won't cause membranes to dry out.

    Happy hatching everyone! [​IMG]

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