Testing eggs in water?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by farmgirljen, Sep 15, 2009.

  1. farmgirljen

    farmgirljen Out Of The Brooder

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    Somewhere rcently, someboy posted about testing eggs in water to see if they woul move, or something...can someone tell me about that- before I dump these eggs, I would like to test them....[​IMG]
     
  2. rebelcowboysnb

    rebelcowboysnb Confederate Money Farm

    You can test found eggs for freshness. Eggs that stand up are getting old an floaters are to old to eat.
     
  3. walkswithdog

    walkswithdog Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Put 2 inches or whatever level is enough to just cover the egg of water in a cup or dish, make it warm 100 or there abouts. You don't want to also cool off the poor lil sucker.

    This is a stress test - you're depriving it briefly of air. Set the egg very gently into the water, minimal waves and wait. In a few seconds if they're strong they start moving, if they're weak it can take up to 10 seconds to get much movement. If they're dead, it doesn't move.

    I don't use it often. Really only if I can't tell on a late egg by candling.
     
  4. dancingbear

    dancingbear Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I take it these are eggs that should have hatched by now? You put some warm (100F) water in a bowl, deep enough to float the egg in. The egg will float, because by now it should have a big air cell. If the chick is alive and moving, the movement will cause the egg to twitch or jerk in the water.

    It IS NOT because the chick feels like it's drowning, the shell isn't permeable enough for water to soak in that fast. Unless there's a crack in the shell, anyway.

    You just leave it in the water about 30 seconds, to a minute, and see if there's any movement. If you don't see movement, it doesn't always mean it's dead, but if you do see movement you will know for sure it's alive!
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2009
  5. Akane

    Akane Overrun With Chickens

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    I don't think that sounds like a very conclusive test. The chick may just not move for various reasons or the egg may appear to move for various reasons. You are better off candling or just waiting. There are also plenty of risks with taking an egg out of the incubator and putting it in water. One of those risks is the reason I would not suggest the water test to tell bad eggs prior to incubation. If an egg gets wet before incubating or going in the fridge I feed it to the pets. Water can help bacteria get into the shell and there are lots of precautions to take when washing eggs. Particularly temperature of the water since shrinking of the egg contents in response to cold helps pull bacteria into the shell. It can also wash off the protective coating the egg has to keep bacteria out. Wet eggs are compromised eggs in my opinion.
     
  6. farmgirljen

    farmgirljen Out Of The Brooder

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    These eggs are under a broody hen. They were all set at the same time, and I had one chick hatch last wednesday... They are too dark to candle- BCM eggs...
     
  7. Akane

    Akane Overrun With Chickens

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    Even so like I said this doesn't sound like a conclusive test. Are you going to get rid of eggs that don't move when it's been said they may be alive and still not move? What does it prove if a live egg may not move and there could be reasons a dead egg might appear to move like air shifting in the egg or vibrations on the surface you have the glass of water?

    If I have eggs that are late and the last sign of progress was more than 24hrs ago then I attempt to candle, tap a hole in the end with the air sac, and pull away bits of shell stopping at any point I hear a chick or see one moving until I've either put the egg back cause I know it's alive or have seen directly that it's dead. It's best to do that when you have an incubator though because once you make a hole in the shell you may have to continue to help them hatch. With a broody I'd just leave them about 3days and either the hen will give up or you can be pretty certain they won't hatch and remove them so the hen puts her attention on the chick(s) that hatched.
     
  8. walkswithdog

    walkswithdog Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I didn't mean the water got in... but surrounded by water a shell is NOT permeable to air for that period of time and a chicks heartbeat at hatch approaches very high levels for short periods and the air sac oxygen is quite limited when it respires that often. Smaller things require more oxygen far more quickly than large ones.

    To say immersion in water is NOT briefly shortening their oxygen supply is simply not true. It is a stress test, it is why it works. They wiggle to survive.

    Since your goal is to find out if they're even alive enough to care, it's useful.

    But if people don't understand you are limiting the available oxygen to something that now needs ROOM air as well as the air sac to survive, people will let them go too long.

    That's why hatching with poor ventilation sucks.

    Immersion is water is a momentary deprivation of additional oxygen - no it can't get in, yes surrounded by a fluid, no additional oxygen is available to the chick for that period.

    Simple facts. But I wouldn't recommend it just to find out if it's moving if you can candle them clearly. I certainly would NEVER do it in front of children who might repeat it with less understanding.
     
  9. farmgirljen

    farmgirljen Out Of The Brooder

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    Walkswithdog- I think you get it,lol! I am not sure if there are chicks in these eggs or not- they are too dark to candle- I tried that). So now the eggs have not hatched for a full week past the chick that did hatch- like i said- I set them all at the same time, and they are all over due(very overdue)...so I just want to make sure before I toss them all and chalk this up to a not so good experience.
     
  10. walkswithdog

    walkswithdog Chillin' With My Peeps

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    And that's what I had to do with my disaster marans hatch. Check with water before I gave up, found a survivor that way...
     

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