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Urgent -eggs cooled past hatching date

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by DesignerG, Sep 26, 2011.

  1. DesignerG

    DesignerG New Egg

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    Sep 13, 2011
    Our bantam hen has been sitting on 8 eggs for more than 35 days. I read that bantams incubation time can be 26 days and that temperature fluctuations cause delays.

    We float tested at approx 30 days and they were 25-30% above the water, so we put them back and left them. Eartha got shut out of the nesting box this morning, we don't know for how long, but the eggs were very cool. The temperature here today is 10 degrees. We float tested one and it was 25% - 30% above the water and moving slightly. We did not see movement last time we tested. I put the tested egg back with Eartha, but didn't attempt to test the others as they were warming nicely.

    There is no smell whatsoever, but no pipping either.

    It seems ridiculous to think there may be live chicks, but we don't want to abandon them if there is a chance. If they were live, what will the cool down have done. What should we do - please help ....
     
  2. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    35 days is too long, 26 days is too long for chickens... a few survive 24 or maybe even 25... but most if not out by 22, are not going to make it. The yolk in the egg can sustain a chick for about 24 days post starting incubation... which is why they can be shipped post hatch for up to 3 days.

    Floating only indicates how much water was lost from the egg.

    Candle to see if there is anything inside and toss. They might not be fertile at all. I would say past 24 days with no pip is 0 chance.
     
  3. DesignerG

    DesignerG New Egg

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    Sep 13, 2011
    Thank you Silkie

    The eggs were fertile, we candled once and saw the chick developing. However, we had two tremendous thunderstorms, then the temperature fluctuations. We didn't think it possible they were still alive past 30 days (I read here that someone had a chick survive at 30 days), but there is absolutely no smell from any of the eggs.

    We will candle, not sure what to look for at this late stage though?

    How do we help Eartha to join the other hens. I'm sure she will be very upset to lose the eggs.

    Thank you for helping us.
     
  4. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    Perhaps you were reading about a duck/pea/turkey chick surviving at 30 days? Those normally hatch in 28 days so 30 would be at the long end of possible.

    At this stage... I would just crack them open and see how far they got. If you candle, just look for a black mass and the possible presence of an air cell. You probably won't see much if they made it far in incubation. An egg should be sterile inside so you can sit one out for months and it'll just dry up. No stink unless bacteria gets in.

    To break your broody, you can kick her from the nest, cage her up in a wire bottom cage, or just keep her "uncomfortable" when on a nest and hopefully she gives up.
     

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