Incubator Catastrophe = Stunted Chick?


Sep 21, 2020
Hi! Any info would be appreciated. I had a batch of eggs--all around the 19 day mark--in an incubator. Most of the eggs were Barnevelder or Bielefelder, with five or six Deathlayers as well.

Anyway, the electrical cord was inadvertently knocked out of the incubator and the temperature dropped substantially, to 80F from around 98F, for at least two hours and possibly as long as four hours before being noticed. All the chicks (in their eggs), with the exception of one Barnevelder, died. I had very low expectations that the one surviving chick would pip.

But she (he?) did. Pipped, and then rolled out of her egg within eight hours. My middle son named her/him Ruth, in honour of Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Here's the thing. The chick is tiny. She's almost 14 days old and is still just a pile of down with a couple of covert feathers. She's very vocal and loves human company, but if you were to compare her at this age now with one of my Bielefelder chicks (yes, I know Bielefelders are larger as adults) at the same age, you'd think she was just hatched.

She lives in a Incubator Warehouse Insta-Brooder with a Brinsea Eco-Glow heater and a Beanie Baby, and again, is super social with humans and even our dog, who will pick Ruth up in her mouth and very gently carry her around the house (the dog is a 125 lb Anatolian Shepherd, and really,an embarrassment to her breed). I'm worried about two things: Her eventual adult size, and integrating her with other chickens. She can't live in the brooder forever.

Anybody else experience something like this? I'm fine with her being a house chicken, the husband (son of a veterinarian and grandson of ranchers) not so much. Thanks for your insights.

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