recent hatch with a surprise ending

Discussion in 'Quail' started by James the Bald, Nov 15, 2013.

  1. James the Bald

    James the Bald Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 6, 2013
    On the evening of October 24, I put 36 of my hens’ eggs in an incubator to hatch out more chicks for next spring. I wrote out an 18 day calendar on my white board marking when lock down and hatch day were. Thursday evening, "Day Zero". The eggs were Texas A&Ms hatched from quail that I hatched from JMF eggs. I was pretty anxious about this hatch as I wasn't sure if my roos knew what they were doing. On lock-down, I was surprised when I only had 1 egg that was translucent. On the evening of Saturday 9 November, my 7yo son heard a squeaking noise, which I thought was the lazy-boy recliner I was in, but he quickly announced that there was and a wet little chick laying in the incubator. I started a count down of when I should open the incubator, put the chicks into the brooder and toss the un-hatched eggs. Thirty hours from the time 3 chicks hatched until I could open the incubator. So throughout the remainder of the evening and into the following day, eggs continued to hatch, with little fuzz balls running rampant inside the incubator. Funny to mention that 10 November is the Marine Corps’ birthday, and myself being a retired Marine, this was truly a hatch to remember. So, early Veterans Day, the time to remove the chicks from the incubator was a few hours away and I prepped the the brooder for it's new residents. Back in April, I built my brooder to be a little bit wider than my incubator, so I can place my incubator directly into my brooder and not have to worry about them hitting the floor. So when the moment to put the chicks into the to brooder arrived, I unplugged the incubator, lowered it into my brooder and opened the lid. After all of the chicks scrambled into the brooder, I placed the incubator back onto its table to be cleaned after I watched my newly hatched chicks. Something about those little buggers chirping and running non-stop crazy in every direction really cracks me up. So, after watching them for about an hour, I returned to the incubator which by now had cooled to room temperature, and was getting ready to toss the unhatched eggs, when I was horrified to see a newly hatched chick in the corner of the incubator. The first thought that went through my head was, "Shoot, this ones not going to make it". I knew that I had a responsibility to give it a chance, so I quickly plugged in the incubator bringing it up to temperature and microwaved a bowl of water to raise up the humidity. I figured that I was going to make an effort to give this one a chance, and if he didn't make it, at least I tried. Imagine my surprise an hour later, this little chick was running inside the incubator like the others were an hour ago. So, I took a purple sharpie and put a stripe down his back so I could see how he was interacting with his hatch mates. I would have never guessed his horrific journey into this world after seeing him run crazy with the rest of the chicks.

    So far, "Second Chance" as I have named it, is doing really well and I have decided this one will not hit the freezer camp if it is a roo. When it's feathers start to grow, I will re-mark him with the sharpie, and will leg band it when it reaches maturity. Now that I think of it, I have a couple of grow out cages to construct.
  2. cluckcluckgirl

    cluckcluckgirl Queen of the Coop Premium Member

    Jun 16, 2012
    Tending to my chickens
    That's amazing![​IMG]
  3. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend Staff Member

    Mar 21, 2011
    New Mexico, USA
    My Coop
    Wow...what a story with a happy ending!! How egg-citing! Please keep us posted on "Second Chance" as he grows. :)

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