Is it okay if the "early bird" opens up the other eggs?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by nwtim, May 8, 2011.

  1. nwtim

    nwtim Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 30, 2011
    We have a small hatch that's on its 23rd day of incubating. The first pip appeared last night and this morning the kids excitedly told us "a chick has hatched". Since then, two more eggs have pipped, but they're taking their jolly time, if you know what I mean.

    Well, the first chick has been running around in the 'bator without any buddies for at least 7 hours and is now pecking on some of the other eggs. Is that okay? It's pretty dry other than its back still looks a bit damp. Should we move it to the brooder already? Or just let nature take its course?

    As for the brooder, what's the most recommended absorbent "ground cover"? Is cardboard good enough, or is it best to get something like wood pellets or chips?

    Thanks!
     
  2. daisychick

    daisychick Incubator Tetris Master Consultant

    Feb 8, 2009
    Colorado
    Leave the chick in there, it is ok for it to be running around the other eggs. It actually seems to stimulate the others to get going on their hatching. As far as what to put in the bottom of the brooder. Paper towels are perfect for a day or two and then pine shavings are great as bedding. You want something where the chicks have traction and plain cardboard is too slick and they could develop leg problems from slipping.
     
  3. nwtim

    nwtim Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 30, 2011
    Thanks for the reassurance!

    We have another concern. The friend we got our eggs from failed to mention something until day 21 - and that is that eggs from her hens often take as many as 26 days to hatch. Unfortunately, we went into "lock-down" on day 18 and hadn't read about all the ways to keep humidity proper. I just filled all the troughs in the tray (HovaBator 1602N with fan) with water and left the two vent holes open.

    Well, now it's day 23 and the troughs have just about dried up - the humidity is down to about 54% (from a high of 80% in the beginning). I'm quite concerned about the membranes drying out on the other eggs that pip (two others so far). Should we sneak some warm water in through one of the vent holes?
     
  4. daisychick

    daisychick Incubator Tetris Master Consultant

    Feb 8, 2009
    Colorado
    Grab yourself a piece of tubing or a straw and pour some warm water down through the vent hole into the bottom trough. It won't hurt a thing.
     
  5. nwtim

    nwtim Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 30, 2011
    Got it - easing humidity back up to 60%. Thanks again for the reassurance.

    The second egg is zipping, but obviously needs a rest - the kids are loving this! [​IMG]
     

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