What would cause a chick to die a few days before hatching?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by JennyPatty84, Mar 11, 2017.

  1. JennyPatty84

    JennyPatty84 Out Of The Brooder

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    I need some advice so this doesn't happen again if it's something I am doing wrong! I had 4 Ameracauna eggs in the incubator. 2 hatched a day early and are happy and healthy and the other two passed away very close to hatching. When I opened them, one was near full term, having absorobed most of its yolk and the other one was close but it's abdominal contents were outside the abdomen, so not quite as far along. What could have caused this? Temp was good the whole way through, and the humidity if anything was a little higher than it should be after lockdown. Sometimes it would get up to 65-70%. Thanks so much, I appreciate all the help! =)
     
  2. dekel18042

    dekel18042 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It could be something within that chick that will never happen again. Not every egg set will hatch and the embryo can die off any time between not starting and day 21.
    You did say Ameraucana but I know Aracona has a lethal gene that when they match up you lose between 1/4 to 1/3 the hatch around day 18 so don't know if that was a possibility.
     
  3. eggbert420

    eggbert420 Chillin' With My Peeps Premium Member

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    Hard to say why. sometimes a few don't make it. If two hatched then the conditions must have been good.
     
  4. AmyLynn2374

    AmyLynn2374 Humidity Queen

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    The Araucana tuft gene is responsible for 1/4 of deaths if the chick receives double couple of the gene. The Ameraucanas do not carry this nor any lethal gene.

    What was your humidity for the first 17 days? Lockdown humidity has no danger of compromising hatch unless the air cells are already too small. The darker eggs have more pigmentation coating and often loose moisture at a slower rate. I run lockdown at 70-75%, unless you are seeing condensation, the higher is more helpful than hurtful for the hatchers.
     
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  5. JennyPatty84

    JennyPatty84 Out Of The Brooder

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    Okay! So it probably wasn't anything to do with my lockdown humidity. Up to the 17 day mark humidity was anywhere from 45 to 57%.
     
  6. AmyLynn2374

    AmyLynn2374 Humidity Queen

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    And that's probably where the problem lies. While the first couple managed to loose enough moisture to hatch, it is very possible, and probable the other two did not. While there are a few people that have success at the higher humidity, more do not and find chicks unable to hatch come hatch day due to drowning. Many people find that low humidity incubation yields much more successful hatches in the table top incubators.
    I run 30% up to day 17 for my standard eggs. If I can achieve that dry, I do not add water. I monitor the air cells to know if when and how to adjust. Because ultimately humidity is all about loosing moisture and growing air cells. This link may help. I use this method, and highly recommend it for anyone not in a high altitude to at least give it a try if your having low hatch rates.
    http://letsraisechickens.weebly.com...anuals-understanding-and-controlling-humidity
     
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2017
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