Three trys and no chicks....can you help me figure out why?


In the Brooder
11 Years
Jan 8, 2009
Sevier County, Tennessee
I bought my granddaughter an incubator for her birthday in January. Her dad tried the first hatch and no chicks. Because of limited time I told him I would try the next one thinking I would have better success but didn't. Had a third batch that should have hatched this week on Wednesday or Thursday but didn't. So, three times and not one egg hatched. I'm getting discouraged as much as I'm trying not to be.

Can someone offer any suggestions as to what might be causing this lack of success please. I'm using a Little Giant incubator. Surely it isn't that all the eggs were not fertile each of three times. I've kept the moisture right I think and added extra as well as stopped turning them the last three days like the directions said to do. The temp has been at 100 degrees. I turned them faithfully twice daily and washed my hands before handling them. I tried to be as gentle as possible when I did handle them.

I just don't know what the problem is but there must be one. Not sure it will give you a clue but on the second try which was my first try after I brought the incubator to my house I cracked open all the eggs after I was sure they weren't going to hatch and there were dead embryos in three of them. The rest looked just like an egg when you break it to cook it. Haven't done that with this latest bunch but it really doesn't look like they're going to hatch and I will break them open in the next day or so to see if I can figure out what went wrong. Thanks for any help or advise.


I must be crazy!
13 Years
Oct 5, 2007
My Coop
My Coop
I think I would start with a second thermometer. Walmart has one with a hygrometer (to measure humidity) for about $10. Based on the information, those are where I would start.

Sounds like you are doing it right. Hopefully you will get it worked out.

Dread Pirate Roberts

11 Years
Jan 20, 2009
pure speculation here, but I'm going to suggest that you had humidity problems.

It seems to me that "kept the moisture right" and "added extra" are mutually exclusive.

That was my problem for my first four hatches. I was keeping it too dry and my peeps were being shrink-wrapped by the membrane.

If the humidity is too high, then the peeps drown when they pip.

I know this is one Hoss of a thread, but it's very worthwhile reading:

I was about to give up on hatching until I read that thread.

Best of luck!


Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast
Premium Feather Member
12 Years
May 14, 2008
North Phoenix
My Coop
My Coop
Where are you getting your eggs from?

Obviously at least three of the eggs were fertile.... the ones that looked like regular eggs probably weren't fertile.

Check temps with a number of thermometers.

Candle at day 10 and day 18.


Free Ranging
12 Years
Oct 16, 2008
why can't the eggs be infertile three times? where are you getting the eggs from? when you turn them, do you roll them back and forth? or do you turn them the same way each time?

I would try setting the eggs in egg cartons and not opening the incubator to turn them.. You must have read how to do this somewhere in this site..

try to determine at what day your unhatched embryos died.. there might be a clue there..

I am guessing bad eggs..(unfertile)


11 Years
Nov 23, 2008
graham, nc
i would keep trying , but would get my eggs from a different set of hens and a roo, i would tend to think the eggs that looked like they were ready to cook were not good. when you store the eggs before you put them in bator where do you put them? and what temp do you store them at? i place mine in a room that the temp is between 55 and 60 deg, (not in frige). is your lg forced air or still air?what kind of humidty guage do you have? how many eggs have you been incubating? hand turning or alto turning? this is just some of the things that would help us to know to help us find out what the problem is and why your incubation has failed.


11 Years
Sep 26, 2008
Niota, Tennessee
agree with william need more facts still air or fan what humidity reading during first 18 days and then what humidity the last three. you had some developement so would need that information to try to see what the prob may be. When storing eggs for incubation they need to be turned at least once a day and stored at cool temps with small end down.


14 Years
May 4, 2007
medina, ohio
I would check the temp with another thermometer as I had the same problem. New therm showed I was cooking eggs. With the new adjustment I hatched 10 of 12 eggs last month.


Wanna-be Farmer
11 Years
Dec 16, 2008
yes my first suggestion is get a hydrometer your numbers may be way off.

try it out this week and see if it is not that then we can go from there as to what the problem might be, but that would be the first thing I would do.


11 Years
Oct 15, 2008
Burnsville, MS
I have a few suggestions.
Definitely get a hygrometer.
Also, you should turn them an odd number of times a day.
Are you candling halfway through? That might give you a better idea. Just because they looked like plain ole eggs in the end doesn't mean they were not fertile.
Obviously you had some fertile eggs if you had embryos.
There is some info missing that will make it easier for us to all help you.
I would go buy a thermometer/hygrometer, get some more eggs and let the great members on this site walk you through another try. That way everyone can know exactly what you are doing and can better help you.

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