Incubator off all night! Eggs cold! Are they ok?? Yes!! My story to help others

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by TxFlowers, Dec 27, 2013.

  1. TxFlowers

    TxFlowers Chillin' With My Peeps

    This happened to me a few months ago and I have been meaning to post my story here in hopes of helping others freak out a little less when they have something similar happen.

    On this particular morning, I went into the room where my incubator was kept to find my Genesis 1588 Styrofoam incubator was off and unplugged! Since I hadn't been in there since about 10 pm the night before to check it and the door had been shut all night, it had to have happened just before I closed the door around 10 and it was about 8 am now. I figure the cat did it right before I shut the door!

    My first thought of course was that eggs were ruined. The thermometers inside were showing about 70 degrees and they had been this way for hours. I had a couple of different groups of eggs in there. Some were slightly less than a week along and others were somewhere between 10 days and 2 wks when this happened. I candled a few eggs and there was no signs of life that I could see. The embryos appeared dead. I started to just throw the eggs away but I decided to turn on the incubator and let the eggs warm up and see what happened. I had nothing to lose at this point! About 2-3 hrs later I candled a few and I was so excited to see the embryos on the older eggs dancing around! I couldn't tell as much about the younger eggs so I waited a few days and candled again and I could see that they had all made it!

    I still worried about having them die on me later from this experience but in the end they were ok. I may have lost another couple before hatching time from this point but that was nothing that wouldn't have likely happened anyway. I had about 25 eggs incubating when this happened. I couldn't believe those eggs could cool down so much for such a long time and still be fine!

    There is a lady that has been raising chickens for years that lives near me. I called her to tell her all about what happened. She told me that she hardly worries anymore about her eggs so long as you have everything right most of the time with the exception of the eggs getting too hot. She told me about how that several yrs ago when we had a hurricane come through that cut out power for many for up to 2 wks, she had maran eggs incubating. They had a generator but she couldn't keep the eggs on it all the time. She said that they would run the generator a few hrs a day and during that time she would plug in the incubator for a few hrs then she would have to turn everything off again. She would keep the incubator covered with blankets the rest of the time to try to keep what warmth she could but for the majority of the time, the incubator was off and this went on for two wks until power was restored. She said that those eggs DID hatch. She said those chicks hatched about 2 wks later than they would have under normal condidtions but they did hatch and she said they weren't weak and sickly as you might expect them to be. Anyway, I found that story to be truly amazing! Her story made my experience seem like nothing! She said mother nature gives the eggs more ability to survive than we think. She said that over the years she has seen many "stupid" hens apparently forget that they had a batch of eggs to sit on and would go roost with the rest of the flock overnight or even longer before they "remembered" they had eggs to take care of! These eggs would still hatch!

    Since my experience and what she told me, I no longer worry about eggs getting a little cool in the small amount of time it takes to candle them or for short power outages which has happened a few times since. I once rushed my incubator out to the car the moment power went out to plug into the adapter. Power ended up being out just 30 minutes. I wouldn't do that now. I just cover the incubators with blankets and wait it out. Granted I would never want another outage or to find my incubator unplugged but things do happen beyond our control and I just want to say that in my case, everything still turned out ok. Since my experience, incubating is a little stressful since I learned not to worry about everything so much!
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2013
  2. davemonkey

    davemonkey Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 25, 2012
    Liberty, TX
    Great story, thanks for sharing!

    I noticed you are in East Texas. Are you in the Piney Woods, or the swamps? ;) I'm right at the change-over between forest and flats...a true mosquitoes paradise (for the mosquitoes).
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2013
  3. TxFlowers

    TxFlowers Chillin' With My Peeps

    I am in Livingston. Not far from you! Yes, bad mosquito issues here too. High humidity and mosquitoes! :(
  4. KateBrayne

    KateBrayne New Egg

    Apr 28, 2014
    Thank you so much for posting your story. I came down this morning and found my incubator off (I too suspect the cat!) and 7 cold 2 weeks incubated Maran eggs. I too was about to throw them away, but I got the incubator going while i checked the internet for advice and found your post. I will leave the eggs in and report back in a week's time if they have hatched (and I will also leave it a couple of extra days if they are not bang on time). Thank you so much for sharing this - i may not be so lucky but at least I know it is worth a try
  5. TxFlowers

    TxFlowers Chillin' With My Peeps

    I hope you have the luck I had!
    Hi. I hope your eggs are fine. Those dang cats! lol Finding the incubator off and with cold eggs inside understandably freaks you out but they do have a chance to be alright! I think that if they are moving around when you get them warmed up, chances are they will be ok. Please let me know what happens! Denise
  6. happycampbells

    happycampbells New Egg

    Nov 1, 2014
    Just wanted to say thanks for your story - it definitely helped keep our hopes up and not give up during our recent experience. We decided to hatch our first duck eggs (have raised chickens before) but had a catalogue of disasters during the incubation period. Somehow the incubator got switched off by mistake the first night and the eggs were completely cold on the morning of day 2. We switched it straight back on as soon as we realised and crossed our fingers. When we candled on day 7, 4 of the 6 eggs were developing properly. Then about halfway through the incubation period we had a thunderstorm in the middle of the night which caused a power cut. We wrapped the incubator up in a blanket but after a couple of hours (by which time the eggs were cool) realised the electricity wasn't coming on any time soon, so I put the eggs in an egg box and brought them in to bed with me under the duvet as I thought this would probably be the closest to the correct temperature we could get, then first thing in the morning we took the eggs and incubator round to a friend's house and set them up there until our power came back on (after 10 hours). We had a terrible week of weather that week and 3 days later another thunder storm and lightning strike caused a second power failure in the middle of the night! (12 hours this time before it was fixed). I didn't wait this time, but brought them straight in to bed again, and yet again drove them round to the friends house as soon as we could the next morning. Despite 3 separate nights with no power and 4 car journeys, 2 of our little miracle ducklings hatched successfully a day early and are now strong and healthy 10 day old ducklings. [​IMG] We think that's a pretty good outcome considering everything they went through - so I would definitely like to encourage anyone else who has similar problems not to give up.
    Malikshahzad and AshleyMarie17 like this.
  7. TxFlowers

    TxFlowers Chillin' With My Peeps

    wow! what a hard time you had! Amazing you still had some hatch and especially amazing that they hatched early instead of late! Well, goes to show that nature gives them more ability to survive than we think!
  8. TravellerTwo

    TravellerTwo Just Hatched

    Dec 19, 2014
    White Springs, FL
  9. TravellerTwo

    TravellerTwo Just Hatched

    Dec 19, 2014
    White Springs, FL
    This post was just a God send to me.
    1 person likes this.
  10. Nadiia

    Nadiia Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 1, 2014
    I'm so happy I've seen your post. My incubator turned off for just over an hour and I was so upset at the thought I may lose my chicks!! It's back on now, I just hope they'll make it :D

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