utterly horrifying egg story gone wrong (warning: graphic)

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Betsysbabyservices, Feb 25, 2012.

  1. Betsysbabyservices

    Betsysbabyservices In the Brooder

    Jun 1, 2010
    Seattle, WA
    a few days ago, I posted that I was worried that our two eggs, which a neighbor had given us, were not starting veins at day 4. When we candled we saw a large dark oval. I looked at every egg candling picture I could find online and every photo looking like ours indicated "dud, infected, bacterial, non growing, remove immediately to prevent explosion and contamination." I ran all over Seattle and bought new eggs (my 7 year old daughter is growing these for her science fair).

    we took them out of the incubator last night and this afternoon we dissected them. We carefully cut open the shells and discovered to our utter horror that in fact the eggs WERE developing. One of them probably was a dud -- the insides were all goopy and runny and liquified (maybe that's right?) and there was an obvious start of an embryo.

    The other one was clearly perfect. My son looked at it with a magnifying glass and said "look the heart is beating." Much to my surprise, this made me immediately burst out crying, get nauseated and run screaming from the room.

    I now cannot get the vision of that miniscule beating heart out of my mind. I am a chicken murderer.

    Never mind that I had chicken for dinner on Wednesday night. This is weirdly different. I'm not sure what the moral of the story is, but boy do I feel horrible.

    My son is also traumatized. My daughter is totally over it.


  2. tinydancer87

    tinydancer87 Songster

    Apr 5, 2011
    SE Georgia
    I'm sorry [​IMG]

    My father decided once that the best way to gauge incubation progress was to crack an egg open. It had a nearly full term chick in it, he got upset.

    I usually just leave them in the incubator unless they start to smell. Another way to compare is to candle a store egg and then compare to yours.

    We all make mistakes, with some time it won't be so bad.
  3. SherrieT

    SherrieT Songster

    Apr 20, 2007
    Barrington, RI
    I did the same thing basically. Only I dropped the egg. My own clumsiness. That little embryo, moving at the bottom of my sink, broke my heart (and yet I'm doing this for DP chickens) This is a good life lesson. Take your kids and have a discussion on how you (all of you) can make sure that it doesn't happen again. You might want to show your son some of the threads where this has happened to people and what they did. Get his mind focused on prevention and not what happened.
    Hope this helps

  4. Betsysbabyservices

    Betsysbabyservices In the Brooder

    Jun 1, 2010
    Seattle, WA
    thank you for your compassion! I like your advice "leave em in til they start to stink."

    is it normal for the insides to be all thin and runny? I guess we have no way of knowing.

  5. plc

    plc In the Brooder

    Oct 6, 2011
    I am so sorry this happened to you. My heart would break too...
    We all make mistakes [​IMG]
  6. theoldchick

    theoldchick The Chicken Whisperer Premium Member 8 Years

    May 11, 2010
    Every person who hatches eggs have done this and it is an absolutely horrific event. All that hard work, the waiting...ruined in a split second. Poof a life is gone. Just like that.


    I remember working as an anesthesia tech at the local humane society. It was routine to spay dogs who were pregnant. At that time it was practice to simply toss the uh....fetuses in the trash can. The doctors assumed the anesthesia killed the uh...fetuses, but I noted the beating hearts under the heaving ribcage of the uh..fetuses. I had a discussion with the senior staff members to change the policy of tossing a living creature in the trash. We changed the policy to allow the tiny bodies to stop functioning snuggled under warm blankets. If I noted the developing fetuses were past a certain stage of development their life was ended by injection.

    Tough job to be sure, but there was no reason to be inhumane.

    Take comfort in that you learned a lesson all chicken keepers have experienced.
  7. crankster76

    crankster76 Songster

    Dec 25, 2011
    it just part of it. take comfort in the fact that ya have the power to help bring more into the world than ya take out..GL

  8. Barred Rocker

    Barred Rocker cracked egg

    Jul 15, 2009
    King and Queen Co, Va
    I've made those kinds of mistakes too. It's a learning experience. Now I leave every egg in the incubator unless it's obviously clear and sort it out after hatch day. There's no need to get upset, the hatching process is never 100%. I had a batch hatch a couple months ago but lost several because the other chicks rolled them around like bowling balls. Just know you did all you knew how to do and move on.
  9. Betsysbabyservices

    Betsysbabyservices In the Brooder

    Jun 1, 2010
    Seattle, WA
    thanks everyone. it was actually really helpful to my children to read these messages and understand that we are not alone in making this mistake. We are redoubling our efforts to do a good job with our new batch. Thanks for the support.

  10. Betsysbabyservices

    Betsysbabyservices In the Brooder

    Jun 1, 2010
    Seattle, WA
    hi', from Isaac :)

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by