Membrane and shell stuck to new chick. What do I do?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by gwendalynn28, Mar 31, 2012.

  1. gwendalynn28

    gwendalynn28 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hey everyone! I ordered some eggs from all the way across the United States. I knew it was a risk shipping them so far but they were a breed that I really wanted and have had trouble finding someone who is nearby that sells them. So, here is the story. I had 18 Blue Laced Red Wyandotte bantam eggs. I candled them at 7 days and everything looked good. Two not fertilized so I tossed them out. At day 17 I candled again and saw only two birds actually moving within the egg. When hatch day came, nothing happened. On the morning of day 22, one chick started hatching. It got about halfway zipped out and I stopped making progress. About 6pm that evening the second chick started hatching out. Chick one still hadn't made any progress. I noticed the membrane around the chick and the chick itself looked really dry. The humidity had fallen down to 47% the second night of lockdown. I quickly fixed it as soon as I got up. I also had a few times during incubation that the temp spiked up to 102 degrees overnight. The chick had been struggling for over 24 hours so I finally took matters into my own hands. I turned on a hot shower in the bathroom and sat the humidifier on toilet and got the room all hot and steamy. I took the chick in there and slowly but surely picked it free from the shell. I had to cut around some of the membrane and shell that was too stuck to the baby to remove without hurting it.
    So, after an hour of sweating pretty bad and my nerves torn to pieces, I get this little chick out of its egg. It does great and is trying to stand up all over the incubator. The next day the other chick still hadn't hatched, so with a tiny bit of assistance I it was able to get out of the shell. During the day though, the one piece of shell that was stuck to its back must have gotten pulled off because he had a little gash on his back. He was a lot smaller than the first one as well. Needless to say, he died the morning of his third day. He didn't show any interest in eating of drinking and I believe he had a prolapsed vent because his rear end just didn't look right. So now I have the other chick who is doing fine and running all around but still has membrane and shell stuck to its back. How can I get the shell off? Should I try to remove it or just wait and see? The baby was lonely and wouldn't stop chirping loudly after his hatch mate died. I found a seller of silkie bantams and purchased two for the new baby since it really didn't like being alone. Someone please help! This is a new thing for me. This is only my third hatch and this is something completely new for me! Thanks everyone![​IMG]
    Here is a picture of the new little chick two after the hatching. Still lots of shell there. I've put the humidifier next to the brooder to make the air more humid with the theory that maybe this will help.
     
  2. Lacrystol

    Lacrystol Hatching Helper

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    You can try to get the shell off by taking a warm cloth or paper towel and wiping it. Sounds like your eggs were shrink wrapped. Just very gently try to wipe the shell off. I'm afraid if the others see it they will be curious and try to peck the heck out of him.
     
  3. Lacrystol

    Lacrystol Hatching Helper

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    Sometimes putting a stuff animal in the box with them helps with lonelyness too, but it's great that you were able to get some silkies for him/her...
     
  4. AngelaPenny

    AngelaPenny Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I had a little bit of shell and membrane on a chick this morning.

    I ran the tap until the water was warm but not hot and held the chick's back under the water until I was able to roll the membrane off.

    Then you can use the "warm" setting on your blow dryer and dry her. Chicks seem to love the blow dryer.
     
  5. gwendalynn28

    gwendalynn28 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I haven't handled this chick much. I tried to pick him/her up yesterday and the chick "attacked" my hand and kept trying to scramble out of my hands. I don't think this one likes the attention so much. I want to try getting the shell off but I think the traumatic entrance into the world has made this little baby a neurotic. It does seem much happier today with the two silkie friends. I'm afraid I may stress the chick out to much if I try to hold him under the tap! That shell is REALLY stuck on too. I tried just dabbing him with a paper towel, but it was pretty obvious it was going to need much more of a soak than that. The other chicks haven't tried to peck the shell off either which is great. They just eat and sleep a lot and the tiny little bantam just stands "guard" over them like he's afraid they will die while they are sleeping like his other friend. He/she kept falling asleep yesterday standing up because it was standing over the other two silkie chicks and keeping an eye on them while they slept. This poor chick is going to need some extra loving since it worries so much already! I'm going to see what happens with shell stuck on the back and try when its a week old to try and remove the shell. I want it to grow bigger and stronger before I start intervening again! I'm hoping it'll come off by itself but so far no indication of that. It is a super small chick. Its eating more know though since it saw the two silkies digging in to the feeder![​IMG]
    The baby watches over his large friends while they sleep and keeping falling over with its head on the stuffed toy because its so tired too!
     
  6. gwendalynn28

    gwendalynn28 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I can't gently get the shell off. Its stuck on hard like it was baked! I'm wondering if I wait will it fall off with the baby fluff when the feathers start coming in?
     
  7. AngelaPenny

    AngelaPenny Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That is going to be painful.

    If you cup the chick in your hand backwards, with the wings securely under your hand you will be able to quickly rinse the membrane off.
     
  8. mossypath

    mossypath Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am sure the chick will be fine but the one thing I want to ask is your bedding cedar? If it is you might want to change it out for something other than cedar if you can.
     
  9. Lacrystol

    Lacrystol Hatching Helper

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    I would cup his wings in your hand while covering his eyes. Keeping the eyes closed usually calms them down, I would still work him on trying to get that shell off. Also upside down, can calm then down as well. But he sounds very sweet....So glad he's has friends with him... you may also try to do it in the dark, at night time chickens sleep so I may be easier and less stressful if you do it in the dark..
     
  10. SierraView

    SierraView Chillin' With My Peeps

    If those are cedar shavings you need to get rid of them they are toxic to chicks.

    Soak the chick in a bowl of warm water and try picking the shell off little at a time. Don't rip it off. You might have to refill the bowl with warm water a few times if it starts to get cool. This stuff is like crazy glue you might not be able to get it off.
     
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