Is she ever coming out?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by cluelesscitychick, Jun 23, 2007.

  1. cluelesscitychick

    cluelesscitychick Hatching

    Jun 23, 2007
    This is my first time incubating eggs, and so far it has not been textbook. One came on day 18, one came on day 20 and now on day 21 I have 1 chick that does not seem to be able to get out of her shell. Instead of pecking around the egg she consintrated on one hole. You can see part of her, including an eye and her beak. Should I be worried? Its been 12 hours! She has a strong cheap and her eyes are open.
  2. AccidentalFarm

    AccidentalFarm Songster

    Mar 29, 2007
    I had a peep do the same thing. After close to 24 hrs. of this, I helped by zipping the shell for the chick, but not removing it or even going through the membrane. Helping the chick is something you have to decide to do on your own, though. Some people will do it and some won't. There is the opinion that if the chick isn't strong enough to make it out of the shell on it's own, it is not going to be a strong chick.

    I chose to help because my peep was obviously getting weak after 24 hrs of trying. The chick is doing fine still, but is very small compared to her bator brothers and sisters.
  3. cluelesscitychick

    cluelesscitychick Hatching

    Jun 23, 2007
    Thank you! [​IMG]
  4. fowlweatherfriends

    fowlweatherfriends Songster

    Mar 14, 2007
    The Sunny South
    Do NOT be afraid to help the chick out! If you don't hear as much peeping, or see as much beak movement-it's time to help. More than likely it has nothing to do with a "weak" chick, but has everything to do with a chick whose membrane has dried out, or is too large for its shell but otherwise perfectly healthy and normal.

    When the chick pips its beak externally the drying process of the membrane really kicks in. And makes it nearly impossible for the chick to move around to "zip" the rest of the shell.

    Here's what you need:

    Have WARM water handy
    Really Really WET warm washcloth
    DULL tweezers-not sharp and pointy
    An eyedropper, or q-tips, or medicine dropper
    Clean hands
    Good lighting

    Here's what you do:

    Remove your egg from bator keeping in mind to turn off any air cconditioning and fans. You want your room as warm as you can stand. (Do not worry about the chick cooling off too much if the room is fairly warm. I have had mine out of the bator for up to 1/2 hour working on the shell and membrane). And do NOT be afraid to open and close the incubator-just keep adding wet cloths to the bator to keep humidity up.

    Using your dull tipped tweezers, carefully start at the pip already created and lift ONLY the shell (like a boiled egg-but try hard to NOT include any membrane in your peeling of the shell).

    Zip the shell around the end where the chick started pipping-it should be at the large end of the egg, but sometimes they will pip at the small pointy end or even in the middle.

    As you help zip the shell carefully take your warm water dropper etc. and "bathe" the membrane occassionally to start softening it up. Be very very carefull not to drop water or soak the area of the beak. You do not want to drop water in the nostrils and drown the chick.

    If for any reason you see blood from the membrane-STOP. Put the egg back in the bator, and wrap the very wet, warm washcloth around the exposed zip you have created. Be careful to not completely cover the beak, but cover as much of the exposed membrane as you can to soften it up.

    Leave the baby in the bator for an hour or two longer. Then try repeating the process untill you have zipped entirely around the egg. The MOST important object is to get the membrane very soft like it should have been for the chick to make its way out by softening it in the warm washcloth.

    In very difficult cases, over a period of hours, you can, in steps, do this process and remove almost ALL of the shell and soak the membrane in the wet washcloth in the incubator. You also can (using your judgement) decide to help remove the membrane itself, but do not do that too early in the shell removing process (you can email me for more directions on the membrane).

    All in all, you need to be very confident to intervene like this. If you are too scared or iffy about it, you may want to just wait it out. But honestly, if you wait and the chick gets quieter and stiller, chances are you will loose it without doing some intervention.

    So you know I am not just "blowing steam", I have hatched out MANY like this myself. Once they make the pip and can't zip, the membrane rapidly dehydrates. Also, some chicks are just WAY to big for their shells and cannot physically move around to do the zipping and then they die in one spot having been unable to rotate.

    I "gave birth" to, or hatched 2 chicks out COMPLETELY in my hand by using this method above AND removing the membrane (email or ask for those membrane directions). They are alive and thriving as I speak-so it can be done! I am not a person who is willing to sit and listen to my bator get quieter and quieter as the chicks die in their shells. But, as I stated, you must choose what you feel is best for your situation.

    Best wishes [​IMG]

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