Terrible, horrible, no good, very bad hatch! What went wrong?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by jettgirl24, Apr 9, 2011.

  1. jettgirl24

    jettgirl24 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 21, 2010
    Duvall, WA
    I finally called an end to my test hatch on day 26. Official tally... 1 out of the 6 eggs I originally set actually hatched. ARGH! Two were infertile and one was an early quitter, all tossed around day 14. At lockdown we had three viable eggs with plenty of movement inside. Bright and early on day 21 I had a beautiful little blue sexlink pop out, and after that there was a whole lotta nuthin!

    I thought I saw movement in one so I started to open it to help on day 26. I figured at that point it was unlikely to come out on it's own. It was definitely breathing but not moving and not cheeping. Put it back in the bator wrapped in a damp washcloth and left it for a few hours. Later I went back to do a little more work but it had passed. I admit that opening it may have killed it sooner but I am 100% certain it was not coming out on it's own. I opened the egg up and found a little splash Marans [​IMG] I don't think it was turned correctly to pip the airsack. I didn't pull it all the way out but I couldn't find the head or beak. It didn't seem overly large for the egg so I don't think that was the issue, and it was surprisingly easy to get the shell off so I don't think the shell was too thick to pip. There was some bright green and white stuff on one side - not sure what that was - bacteria maybe? Any thoughts?

    Did an eggtopsy on the other one and it had definitely expired several days ago. Didn't stink yet but the membrane was very dry inside and some super gross grey liquid came out when I punctured the membrane. Thanks to that liquid I lost any desire to open further so I don't know much else about this egg. Judging by the other two that made it to lockdown I don't think I had a shrink wrapping problem and my humidity was good for the entire hatch so I'm not worried about that. This one was definitely viable at lockdown, must have died sometime shortly thereafter. From what I could tell there was no internal pip. The shell on this one was really tough to get into so if it actually did pip internally that could have been the problem.

    Now I'm just trying to figure out what happened! This was my first hatch in my homemade wine cooler bator. It's got a fan and the repti-temp thermostat. Humidity was a steady 40 - 45% through day 18 and 60 - 65% through lockdown. Temps were very steady, keeping within .2 degrees of 99.5 throughout the incubation period. These were eggs from my flock, not shipped. I trust my thermo/hygro but one thing I will do before my Silkie eggs get here at the end of the month is go out and buy another thermometer just to verify that mine is reading correctly. I'm going to clean the bator like crazy as well just in case I had some kind of bacterial problem.

    Anything else that might have caused this terrible hatch? Anything else I should think about doing before my next hatch?
     
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2011
  2. Gypsy07

    Gypsy07 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 4, 2010
    Glasgow, Scotland
    Three eggs is far too small an amount to say for definite that anything actually DID go wrong. Your one successful chick hatched bang on time on day 21, so your temps must have been pretty good. It hatched on its own with no assistance, it wasn't shrinkwrapped, and as you didn't say anything about it being soggy I'm assuming it wasn't, so your humidity must have been pretty good too.

    Sometimes you just get chicks making it up to lockdown then dying in the shell for no good reason, and you can't put it down to anything you did or didn't do. If you had a dozen eggs at lockdown and eight of them died, you could assume that something genuinely went wrong. But to have just three eggs and two of them died, well, I'd say there's every chance that it was just bad luck and not anything specific. Especially as they didn't both die at the same stage of development.

    The green and white stuff you found inside the egg is perfectly normal. It was probably there in the shell of your successful chick after it hatched too, but you just didn't notice it. I've found it in every broken shell in my bator after a hatch. I think it's chick embryo poo but that's just my guess! Sounds to me like that chick was just too weak to survive. The other one with the grey goo, I'm not too sure about. But all in all, it sounds like you did well with your temps and your humidity, so don't be too dispirited. Though I hope you're going to get a buddy for your lone chick. They really don't do too well on their own.

    Next time, start with more eggs and see how it goes!
     
  3. jettgirl24

    jettgirl24 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 21, 2010
    Duvall, WA
    Thank you Gypsy07, you're making me feel much better. Hopefully it was just bad luck as I've been SO happy with the bator up until this point. I used an LG last time and had a horrible time with keeping it regulated. This one was so much more worry free so it made the outcome more disappointing. You're probably right, I should have done a full dozen for the test hatch rather than just six. I don't really have room for many more big chickens until end of June when we move so I didn't want to end up with a bunch of babies right now but I wanted to test the bator before I get my expensive eggs. I'll be getting 2 dozen Silkies at the end of this month so hopefully that hatch will go well!
     
  4. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    The green goop in the eggshell IS chick waste, nothing to worry about. Sometimes newly hatched chicks even poo that green stuff the first day out of the shell.

    I am one of those people who is happy if ONE egg hatches, and eggstatic if two or more hatch. Especially with a small batch (3 of my incubators only hold 7 eggs.)

    Part of the hatching experience is just doing it more.... and even experienced hatchin' folks have horrible hatches sometimes.

    Please don't beat up on yourself too much! It is what it is, and woo hoo! You got a chick!!!
    [​IMG]
     
  5. jettgirl24

    jettgirl24 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 21, 2010
    Duvall, WA
    Thanks! I did get a super adorable baby too...

    He's the little blue one in front. The scruffy girl in the back is a little hatchery Faverolle I picked up from the feed store to keep him company. She's not the cutest bird right now but she's very sweet [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  6. Gypsy07

    Gypsy07 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 4, 2010
    Glasgow, Scotland
    Aaaawwwww, you got him/her a buddy. They're both super cute!
     

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