That long... really?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Paganbird, Apr 25, 2009.

  1. Paganbird

    Paganbird CrescentWood Farm

    Apr 25, 2009
    Western Pa
    I am new to hatching eggs. We've had chickens for awhile, day old peeps,even, but never tried hatching eggs, until now.
    Three weeks ago, a racoon killed my beautiful SLW rooster. He was mild tempered and beautiful and my kids were soooo upset. So, we gathered up the eggs from the hens that were out with him and brought them in. I sent my DH to TSC for an incubator - and here I am, 3 weeks later with 5 fertile eggs.
    I tried searching this site for info on the actual hatch and I read a lot of posts. One post said it could take up to 24 hours for the eggs to hatch after the first pip. Is that true? I found one pipped this morning and it's been over 3 hours since I found it. Just a small pip, no more of the shell has been cracked than when I found it. It still shakes & I hear an occasional peep, but I want it to hatch so badly. We miss our rooster and would love to have one of "his" chicks.
    I don't want to interfere with hatching. What's normal to expect in regard to time frame for a single egg?
     
  2. Shanay235

    Shanay235 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It could be as long as 48+ hours from the time they pip to hatch. Don't be too eager to help just yet. As long as he's occasionally peeping and moving, he's OK.
     
  3. Paganbird

    Paganbird CrescentWood Farm

    Apr 25, 2009
    Western Pa
    Thanks for the reassurance. I'm worried that we may only get this one chick and I hope s/he makes it!
     
  4. Shanay235

    Shanay235 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sorry, should have included this in the first response. The chick is resting and absorbing the yolk right now. Just try to keep track of how often he peeps, moves, or pecks at the egg. After 24 hours with no progress and you notice the movement, pecking, etc. slowing down, then I'd consider a possible intervention.

    I have never hatched chicks before, I'm a duck/goose person but I don't start to worry about mine until about 36 hours after pipping with no progress.
     
  5. dancingbear

    dancingbear Chillin' With My Peeps

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    South Central KY
    You may also still have fertile hens from your roo. They can retain semen for a long time. Check a few of your breakfast eggs for the bullseye, (look at the sticky, top of this section, for the thread that shows how to tell fertile from infertile) if your still getting bullseyes, you could set another clutch when this one finishes hatching.

    Chicks can take a long time from pip to zip. It's always nerve wracking for me to wait, but waiting is almost always the best thing to do. They almost always do better if we leave them alone.
     
  6. Paganbird

    Paganbird CrescentWood Farm

    Apr 25, 2009
    Western Pa
    HOORAY!!!!
    One healthy (and very loud) chick!! 11 hours of no action and then - it was like on fast-forward! I hope another hatches. So far no movement or sounds from the other 4 eggs.
    This one ought to be interesting... "Betty" was an absolutely gorgeous SLW roo and the hen is "Phoenix" a bearded EE!!
    I hope this ones a big colorful rooster!
    I am sooooo excited! I let the kids stay up to watch.
     
  7. Shanay235

    Shanay235 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 14, 2008
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    GO BABIES GO............. [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  8. Paganbird

    Paganbird CrescentWood Farm

    Apr 25, 2009
    Western Pa
    What a wonderful morning! I have a lil' brown peep sunning in the brooder and - deja vu - an egg is cheeping at me!
    Got a question about egg fertility, tho. There was a post about my hens still laying fertile eggs. The roo's been gone about a month... is that too long? I don't know how to tell if the egg was fertile when I crack it. I never expected to care! We got the roo by accident. I ordered 2 SLW pullets to add a little variety to my flock. One was a roo. Hence the roo named "Betty." My kids named her before we found out she was a him.
     
  9. Intheswamp

    Intheswamp Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm a newbie, so take this with a grain of salt...

    I was just reading this morning where a hen stays fertile from 5-7 days but after day 10 the fertility rate starts sinking fast.

    I think a month is stretching it too far, but I'm sure somebody experienced will speak up on the matter.

    Good move on grabbing those eggs and incubator! "Betty's" legacy lives on! [​IMG]
    Best wishes,
    Ed
     
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2009
  10. Marion

    Marion Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:According to Mississippi State University, "Following mating, sperm enter the hen's oviduct and are stored within sperm storage glands. Only sperm that can swim will enter these sperm storage sites. These glands can store more than half a million sperm. Sperm can remain alive in these glands and fertilize eggs for up to 3 weeks.

    A hen will have maximum fertility for only about 3 to 4 days after one mating."

    So with that in mind, although the hen's fertility is only MAXIMUM for about 3 or 4 days after mating her eggs COULD still be fertile for up to 3 weeks.

    Fertility in stored EGGS really goes down as the days pass so the fresher the better for hatching but some folks on here have used eggs that were a couple weeks old and still had decent hatches.
     

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