Trying to decide what to do


10 Years
May 10, 2010
Today is day 22 for my chicks. I have a total of 7 that made it to lockdown. They were shipped eggs, and had wonky air cells.

At this point, 6 have hatched and are doing great.

The last egg has not pipped. When I was getting the incubator set up for lock down, I heard this chick chirping from inside the egg, so I KNOW it developed to that point.

I was getting impatient, so I tried to float test it today, and it sunk, which supposedly means it never developed. I know that's not true.

Should I give it more time, or intervene?
Candle it to see if there is any detectable movement. Look closely at the air cell area to see if he has internally pipped. if you see his little beak in the air cell area, then he has pipped inside. I would give him more time. I hatched 60+ button quail and had 1 egg that hatched 4 days after everyone else. I don't trust the float test with chicken eggs.
I tried candling, and I think I saw something in the air cell- it was really tough to see, everything was so dark. Plus, if it was chirping a couple days ago, wouldn't that mean it had internally pipped?

I'm perfectly happy to let it incubate a couple days more, but I'd feel really bad if there was something I should be doing NOW, and I didn't do it. I've decided I'm not a fan of natural selection when it applies to my chicks.
often my first to pip hatches last. in fact twice i didnt check on the incubator a day or two after and a chick was dry and hoping arnd. these 2 are in my flock still. good luck
I just asked about this egg on your other thread... I would wait until atleast day 23 or 24 before I did anything... Then, you could make a small "pip" in the egg to see if it made it.
I hate the gamble of assisting and not assisting with eggs…

When you feel you should act and not have them die inside their shell because they need help…
Or that you know you can mess it up for them by helping…


Well,you could wait and I think most people will say to do so. But I've had eggs that I knew weren't going to hatch, they got shrink wrapped or just are weak and I've lost a few that peeped but never pipped and I was so angry with myself that I didn't do anything...

Before I have "pipped" the egg to check it if it were alive or to at least guarantee it can breath. I know they can shrink wrap from this, you'd have to moisten the membrane if it dries(d) and you only have one egg left so it won't compromise the rest if you do. I've chicks out when I knew they weren't going to hatch and most of my birds lived and grew up healthy. Others were deformed or really weak and died on their own already or a few days after. I hear you about the natural selection. When it's my birds, I couldn't care less about what's natural. I care that they survive.

Do you hear anything anymore?
I just helped 2 of my silkies today on day 22 since no pips going on. One was pipped externally since early yesterday, I started this afternoon, hit blood twice, and just an hour ago pretty much had it out of the shell, it's head was stuck under the wing...It's one foot was pushing against my hand, so I propped a warm washcloth in the bator against that exposed leg and rest of the shell, and he pushed the rest of the shell on his own..I assume roos... and is up and moving. The other had an outer pip since yesterday, but not through the membrane...started slowly picking at his pip to see was stuck the same way under the wing, and he is out and cruising the bator big time. I would not have done this had they not been externally pipped or internally and peeping...I knew with the time these guys were stuck and it was live or die, or I would feel bad, now I feel good...It is a personal decision, and I had no pips to think about when I opened the bator and humidity is high, never went below 68
Ok, I decided to open it up because I didn't hear anything anymore. I felt like something was terribly wrong if it was peeping a couple days ago, but never pipped and never hatched.

It had died.
So at least I don't have to worry that I killed it.

I'm not sure if there's anything I could've done.

Here is a link to the picture of it. It looks like it would've been another cute chipmunk baby.

on what went wrong are welcome.

But, my overall statistics are pretty good.

Shipped eggs received: 12. 2 had severely damaged air cells, and started oozing within a couple hours, so they were tossed. Three more died do to an incubator issue (the incubator wigged out before I got a good chance to candle, so I don't know if they'd started to develop or not). 7 made it to lock down, and I had 6 healthy chicks hatch.

If I toss out incubator snafus, I had 9 eggs, of which 7 developed and 6 hatched. Pretty great for shipped eggs in winter.
I'm really sorry to hear your chick didn't make it...
they die for so many reasons. Positioning, genetics, incubation issues... Etc. of your eggs that made it to lockdown you did pretty well though so at least you have those little fuzzies ^^

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