Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by chichi56788, Jun 21, 2010.

  1. chichi56788

    chichi56788 Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 2, 2010
    Columbia, SC
    Ok, I have a few questions.

    1. My eggs are due to hatch the 25. Is lockdown tomorrow (the 22) or wednesday (the 23)?
    2. How long does it take a chick to dry? It has been about 24 hours and my chick is still not completely dry (back and head are still wet)
    3. Is it normal for a chick to be born without a toe? I have a silkie with 4 toes. And no, the one she is missing is not the extra toe. It is the first toe. So she only has the middle, 3rd and the 2 other toes.
    4. Does humidity stay in a room? I have my 6 by 6 "chicken room" filled with heat lamps and such and have been opening my bator to candle the eggs (not knowing the silkies were in lockdown) and I still had a silkies hatch and another piped (I only had 2 good silkie eggs) so the eggs arnt shrinkwraped.
  2. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 30, 2009
    Charlotte, NC
    1. I don't observe a specific day for lockdown. I candle every starting about four days before the "due date," and lock them down when I start seeing little bills/beaks in the air sac.
    2. Chicks should be drying out in a few hours. Is it wet to the touch or does it just look wet? Sometimes a bird that is a little premature or has a hard time hatching will get covered in albumen and other gunk and look wet even after drying. Some folks wash these birds in warm water, but I just leave them be--they'll need to be a little warmer than their fluffy compatriots, but they'll fluff up eventually.
    3. Not normal but not unusual. It's a common deformity, and fortunately not a life-threatening one. If she's getting around fine I wouldn't worry about it--but I wouldn't breed from her either unless you want more babies with missing toes.
    4. Well--every room has its own humidity--but it's usually not the same as the inside of the incubator. If the humidity in the incubator is higher than in the room (such as during lockdown when you have towels and such in there) then when you open it, you will lose some humidity in the incubator to the room. And vice versa. But that doesn't instantly mean the eggs will get shrink-wrapped. If you're not measuring the humidity then it's possible your ambient humidity is simply not that low. Or you may be lucky--some eggs will hatch despite poor humidity. The one that is pipped may yet have trouble--just keep your eye on it. If it seems to get stuck you may have to help it--once it's pipped, if it gets stuck what will happen is that it will gradually expand the pip and keep expanding it into a great big open hole, because it will want to be zipping the shell but it can't turn around to draw a line, so it just keeps pecking at that same spot. It's normal for the baby to expand the pip a little before zipping, but a stuck bird will just keep poking and poking and poking for hours. You can wait many hours and watch to see if it's shrunk wrapped--if it's a healthy bird it will go for a long time before you need to intervene and you're better off giving it more time just in case it's not.

    Having a higher humidity during lockdown is simply a precaution that helps people get higher hatch rates. It doesn't necessarily mean that the eggs won't ever hatch with low humidity. [​IMG]

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