We had our first lot of eggs being hatched naturally begin hatching today. They weren't due until tomorrow, possibly even later due to mumma hen spending a few hours one day off the eggs. I was caught unprepared! Turns out chicks can get through the cheap chicken wire! It didn't even occur to me that the holes would be bigger than chicks! Anyway, I have a few questions. 1. Only two chicks have hatched, and 1 chick tried to hatch but died in the membrane. We have 9 eggs still being sat on. How long from the time the first two hatched do I need to wait before I assume all the other eggs wont hatch? 2. Can I remove the chick in the membrane/half shell? I am worried about the smell, but then someone told me the hen may not go back to the other eggs if I disturb them? 3. I realised the chicks couldn't get back into the nesting box, so I made dirt ramps for them. Will this suffice? I didn't have any wood or anything else to use! 4. I have chick starter, and shallow water dishes in the yard. Is there anything else I need? 5. The mother hen has taken to motherhood really well, but is digging these massive holes in the dirt! Is this just a long overdue massive dirt bath? Or some other kind of weird behaviour? Has anyone seen anything similar? Finally and MOST importantly. I am out all day tomorrow. Will the chicks be fine with mumma without someone checking on them? Or do I need to organise for someone to check them every now and then? My folks can until midday, but then from midday to 4pm no one will be home. Have I missed anything? Anything else I need to be doing to ensure their safety?