Only one chick hatched - 3 days late - what to do?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by sian, Nov 18, 2009.

  1. sian

    sian Out Of The Brooder

    Nov 17, 2009
    Purcellville VA
    Hi, I'm new to the forum and new to incubating. I incubated 24 eggs (12 Andalusians and 12 Golden Lakenvelders). They were due to hatch on Saturday but my hubby came running out to the barn to tell me the incubator was up to 102 . I turned it down but I thought I cooked them as no-one hatched. I was about to write myself off as a bad mom, throw the eggs out and not make the same mistake again yesterday, but I forgot. Tonight one of them is trying to hatch - but I'm wondering if I should let it keep going - what if it is an only chick? I guess I can tuck it in my bra for a few weeks, but then what?

    We have a horse farm with 5 hens and 2 roos - they free range and boss the horses and dogs around, and I've never tried to hatch eggs before. The roos are silkies, plus 2 silkie hens, the others are Andalusian, Black Spanish and a Silver Lakenvelder. The Silkies would maybe adopt it, if it survives.

    Any ideas? I feel like a total dummy/ heel about this:(

    The last thing I expected was to have only one chick.
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2009
  2. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    If you have a still air incubator, meaning no fan 102 is a good temp. If you have a fan 99.5 is ideal, but 102 still won't be enough to kill. Did you open the eggs or candle them to ensure they were really gone?

    For a single chick, often a stuffed animal or feather duster keeps them calm and you can raise up up alone just fine.

    Good luck and welcome!
  3. MIKE555444

    MIKE555444 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 8, 2009
    Pliny, West Virgina
    I bet you have been a little low on temps so your hatch is coming late.....

    Don't give up... just give them some more time and see... what can it hurt

    Maybe you will get suprised [​IMG]

    It wouold be tough for one all alone but if you put him/her inside in a box with a light for a few weeks I bet he has a good chance of surviving.
  4. AHappychick

    AHappychick Wanna-be Farmer

    Dec 16, 2008
    yes give it time, what is your humidity in the bator? if still air then 102 is actaully a good number. It is possible a silkie would adopt it, do you have one that is maybe broody? if the chick hatches you can try introducing chick to a silkie hen and see what happens. if no others hatch perhas you can get a chick from somewhere else. Where are you located?
  5. sian

    sian Out Of The Brooder

    Nov 17, 2009
    Purcellville VA
    Thanks for all the replies. The one chick did hatch. I admit, I helped it after 27 hours, by picking at the shell, not the membrane and then it was stuck inside the egg, I dunked it in 99.5 degrees water up to its neck and the shell fell off! I'm sure I shouldn't have but as the hole was getting no bigger I decided we had nothing to lose.

    It did have a splayed leg, so now its living in my family room in a box with a heat light and bandaid hobble. Its keeping us all entertained. Its getting very friendly and has been pretty noisy from the beginning. It doesn't seem to mind not having anyone else around. It seems to be "talking" to our parrot!

    I didn't candle or check the other eggs, at that point I figured it was too late. But maybe I should have kept them going a bit longer.

    I do have another question though. I bought a new still air incubator for 12 more eggs. The instructions definitely say only run it at 99.5, and don't mention a temp difference if you have a fan (which I don't) . No mention of 102, or anything higher than 99.5. So I've been running it at 99.5 and trying to make sure it doesn't go above 100. Should I consider letting it run a little higher?

    Thanks so much!
  6. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

    Jul 9, 2009
    Northern CA
    My Coop
    I'd let it get a bit higher.

    I ran my first hatch at 100 degrees per the instructions. I still had 5 of 7 hatch, but they were a day late in hatching. I plan on running it at 101.5 next time.
  7. sandy sea

    sandy sea Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 19, 2008
    Gavilan Hills, CA
    I have had chicks hatch up to 5 days apart. Good luck.

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