Losing about one per day ... :*(

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by kcaywood, Jan 12, 2011.

  1. kcaywood

    kcaywood Songster

    Sep 3, 2010
    Rancho Cordova, CA
    This is my first hatching attempt. I'm using eggs shipped through eBay. The initial set came from three sellers - the eggs of only one seller really developed. Beautiful little hearts beating, then their eyes showing, then movement ... There were 10 little birds living, and then one by one, in the last five days, four have died. I opened one egg - ai yi yi - and it was hard to look at but then fascinating to see how the chick had developed. It looked the same as week-old embryos pictured online, and I didn't see any defects. Now tonight was the fourth death ... I don't want to look. The other six are still moving and apparently thriving ... am I doing something wrong? Wouldn't I see a larger loss at once if there was a temperature or humidity problem? Does this just happen all the time? [​IMG]


  2. magicpigeon

    magicpigeon Songster

    Oct 9, 2010
    I agree that if there were a temp or humidity problem more of the chicks would have died at once. I read somewhere about chick fatalities before they come out of the egg. I think it might be in the notable topic index, I'll go check [​IMG] Sorry for your loss [​IMG]
  3. kcaywood

    kcaywood Songster

    Sep 3, 2010
    Rancho Cordova, CA
    Thanks, Magicpigeon - I will look too. These are Blue Andalusians I'm losing ... I really was hoping for some little blue chicks ...
  4. CDennis

    CDennis Songster

    Apr 1, 2009
    Sorry for your loss! Just trying to bump your thread and hopefully get you some EXPERT help! This is my first time hatching.
  5. jeslewmazer

    jeslewmazer Songster

    Nov 24, 2009
    I am on my first batch of shipped eggs. Started with 24 and now down to 7, and 2 of those are not looking good now. I have been told and read on here that a 45% hatch rate is great. I compared it to my current status which is about 29%. I think it is from the stress of shipping that contributes to the losses, not necessarily individuals. The process of shipping can shake the eggs up. Even highly fertile eggs will fail to develop. The risk of shipping eggs (which is a big risk). You might have other issues, but I agree that you should have already noticed them by now.
  6. speakup4kids

    speakup4kids Songster

    Apr 3, 2010
    Yuba City , CA
    Here's my advice for what is worth… Stop touching the eggs… Don't candle them, don't breathe on them, don't open the incubator (unless you have to turn them because you don't have an auto turner) Resist the temptation to check the eggs. [​IMG] Shipped eggs sometimes have air cells that are either broken or partially broken and if you don't touch the eggs at all I have had luck with them somehow repairing themselves. Every time I interfere and try to candle the eggs before around day 16 or so I seem to lose a ton…

    Good luck with the rest. [​IMG]
  7. muddstopper

    muddstopper Songster

    Aug 23, 2008
    Murphy NC
    I agree with the above person. Leave the eggs alone. There is no telling how much bacteria could be living on your hands, everytime you touch the eggs, you are exposeing them to more evil bugs. I set my eggs and forget them, looking and candleing has never helped a egg develope or hatch. I wish more people on here could resist the temptation to mess with their eggs once set. Maybe we wouldnt have to keep reading about all the horror stories about poor hatches. If you dont have automatic turners, you still dont have to touch the eggs to turn them, just prop up one side of the incubator and alternate which side is propped up each time you need to turn. Monitor heat and humidity and in 21 days you will have little chickies. Doing anything else just reduces the chances of the eggs survival.

  8. bargain

    bargain Love God, Hubby & farm

    Apr 13, 2008
    Bowdon, GA
    Agreed! Overhandling and overcandling can cause additional problems - it lowers temp and humdity - exposes the eggs to unnecessary swings of both when constancy is critical. I candle usually just one time - right before lockdown - the last 3 days. Have a blessed day. Nancy
  9. Bat Cave Silkies

    Bat Cave Silkies Songster

    Feb 11, 2010
    Bat Cave, NC
    I'm still wondering how it is you KNOW--100%-- the chick has died, before you open the egg????
  10. shellyga

    shellyga Songster

    Oct 23, 2010
    I agree with what Nancy and others have said about not handling them too much. Once my eggs arrive in the mail, I let them sit for between 12 and 24 hours before I put them in the incubator to give them time to settle from the mailing. I was fortunate enough to talk Nancy out of Three Lavendar Orpington eggs when we went to pick up our new rooster a few weeks ago and they rode in the truck small end down during the trip home.. I still let them sit for several hours before putting them in the incubator even though I knew they had gone from Nancy's loving hands to my loving hands -- lets not even talk about the PO!

    I candle on day 18 only - this started my second hatch because frankly.. I didn't know what I was looking at with veins, eyes and such..my old eyes can't see like they used too... so now- day 18 is unmistakable.. either it is developing or it is not. The for sure clears do not make it into the hatcher.. does every egg that goes in the hatcher make it.. NO.. but at least I know I am not staring for days at a clear egg.

    My first hatch was full of learning opportunities and I am by NO means an expert - just letting you know what works for me. Good luck and I am saying a prayer for your hatch.


BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by