My first totally-mine hatch, and.. oh no! I won't be here to watch!

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by HeatherB, Nov 17, 2010.

  1. HeatherB

    HeatherB In the Brooder

    Sep 6, 2010
    Ellsworth Twp, OH
    I lurk... I'm guilty. [​IMG] It's far more interesting to read what everybody else has to say than to try to come up with something interesting enough to share! But, I digress..

    For the first time in yeeeears, and the first time ever in my own living room (always before at my uncle's!), I have a full incubator. Today is day 21 for some of them, others are due to hatch Saturday, next Tuesday, and next Thursday. I admit it -- I'd been feeling a little broody, so I ordered a bunch of eggs on eBay, and unfortunately they all got here at different times! Today's the big day for the first set of eggs, and these are the first babies that are truly my hatch, not a family member's that I'm just hovering over -- and even if they were someone else's eggs, I've waited on them for 21 days!

    However.. we had a family emergency last week. We lost our cat, Azzy, who was absolutely my husband's darling after something (the vet can't quite pinpoint what) threw both her and her mother (2 of our 5 cats) into liver failure. Mama pulled through with treatment.. Baby just continued to go downhill [​IMG] The morning of our wedding anniversary, we got the news that the vet no longer had any hope and thought that she should be euthanized. Everybody had a really rough week.. We decided to celebrate our anniversary this week instead.

    Went ahead and booked a bed and breakfast for a few days... forgot all about the incubator time-line, especially since I really wasn't sure if I'd even have any hatching. Can't quite get that candling thing right, it'll take practice I suppose... I actually went and bought chicks because I didn't think I'd have any hatching, and waiting to see was just killing me!

    Last night, watching a particularly terrible 60's movie with my husband, my incubator started peeping.. little bits at first, with a few friends chiming in until we could hear it over the movie. I spent the rest of last night hovering over them and chattering back, feeling absolutely terrible! Because we're leaving for our little getaway this morning and I won't get to watch my first eggs in forever and a month hatch!! [​IMG] I did call my uncle to let him know my incubator was peeping, though... he's thrilled right along with me and says I can borrow his if I ever need more hatching power, since he quit keeping birds quite some time ago. [​IMG]

    Got up this morning and the first thing I did was check on them. 104.8 degrees! [​IMG] That incubator has been at 100.7 for THREE weeks, and I have temp problems on day 21! I swear the cats were messing with the thermostat. So I had a heart attack. I know I shouldn't have, but I took the lid off to cool it, and started tapping the eggs very gently.. just a little. Nothing. Not. A. Thing. Very carefully picked one up, held it close to my ear, talked to it... nothing. One at a time, I went through all of them and didn't hear a thing. I set the last one down, calmly went about adjusting the temp back to where it should be... just in case... and I started to hear peeping. Thank God! The lid went back on and I talked to them for a little bit... I'm hearing peeping as I'm typing. It's so exciting! My old man, the 14-year old kitty, Knox, is staring at the incubator looking very uncertain. And I have to leave in a few hours! [​IMG]

    If it had bigger windows, I would have my husband set up a time lapse camera... so, that's on the list. I need to get better with power tools and build an incubator with a totally see-through top.

    My daughter and my mother-in-law will be here, and have been given instructions on how to handle the chicks... basically, leave them alone until they're fully hatched and dry, and then move them to the brooder / show them the food and water. I should be back to see my Saturday eggs hatch... though there are 10 due to hatch today and 2 Saturday, so that may be a dud. Four on Tuesday, and 10 on Thursday of next week... easter eggers in that bunch!

    Keep your fingers crossed for me. I hate that I won't get to see them, but I hope to have some lovely little babies when I get home. [​IMG] And my husband says that I'm crazy for talking back when they start peeping, but I have to note that he lit right up when he heard them talking to us last night [​IMG] And he's now started a list of breeds he wants to hatch. He's easily just as bad as I am!


    The powers that be heard me whining!! I checked again when I finished this post, and one of them was zipped halfway through... I must have missed the pip earlier! Jumped in for a quick shower, and when I got out I could hear peeping all the way from the bathroom. I have my first baby! And two more have pipped! Good lord that was fast, I remember that taking a LOT longer before!

    I admit I went in there real quick to move the broken egg out of the way for a picture...


    I have my first baby, and before I had to leave!! [​IMG] Now if only he'll dry off super, super fast so I can say goodbye properly [​IMG]

    Question? Babies in the brooder are mostly a week old and shouldn't be an issue... but I have a couple in there that just hit three weeks. Will they be a problem? Do I need to set up another brooder for the older ones? They do fine with the little ones in there now, just not sure about adding the newly hatched.
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2010

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