What would cause a chick to die after it pips through the shell?

Discussion in 'Hatch-A-Longs' started by TammyF, Jan 21, 2015.

  1. TammyF

    TammyF Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 22, 2014
    On my 2nd hatch now. 2 have hatched fine. Its day 22. I had 2 pip through the shell but something happened they died soon after. I also have 10 that have done nothing yet. Is there something I should be doing?
     
  2. scflock

    scflock Overrun With Chickens

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    They could have a bacterial infection, birth defects, weak, or any number of things. One thing I have learned over the years is that is nature's way of culling the weak birds. I hate to see one pip and die in the shell, but take it from someone who knows, that's much easier than losing a cute little fluffy a week later, or having to cull a chick with deformities.
    As far as the ten that aren't doing anything, is your temperature too low? Humidity too high? Have you candled to look for development?
     
  3. Bill Matthews

    Bill Matthews Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You said that this is your second hatch....How did the first hatch go? Did anything happen this time differently than last time?......Yes, something is wrong...Some of the chicks hatch on day 20 and 19, even; your problem depends on the incubator type, your experience, and fundamental knowledge.....There are info sites online; and you could call either the manufacturer or one of the better hatcheries...Someone will be willing to help you....Present hatch may be a lost cause...Any that hatch now most likely will be unhealthy due to the stress and development issues associated with the hatching process....However, don't blame yourself and keep trying...You'll get the hang of it before long..
     
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  4. TammyF

    TammyF Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 22, 2014
    The first hatch went extremely well. 100%hatched. I have had problems with humidiy going way up and temp dropping too low this time. I cant figure out why but I just have. I candled them before I put them in the hatch box and there was movement in all of them. Thanks for all the info.
     
  5. scflock

    scflock Overrun With Chickens

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    Sounds like a temperature problem. If the temp goes down, the relative humidity goes up. What style of incubator?
     
  6. TammyF

    TammyF Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 22, 2014
    Little Giant. It has a fan it it. The first hatch went well except we had trouble controlling the humidity when they hatched. So my husband bought a fan and put in it this time and it is still no easier to control. As soon as they start pipping through the shell the humidity sky rockets.
     
  7. scflock

    scflock Overrun With Chickens

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    Well , the humidity is going to jump during hatching. That's not a problem, it helps the chicks slide out of the shells easier. If you are having a delayed hatch, or they are dying in the shell, then my guess is low temperature or high humidity during the first 18 days. They could be drowning in the shells. After 22 days, I would go ahead and take them out. Chances are if they hatch now, they will be unhealthy. Break them open. If they are fully developed with no pip, I would say they are drowning. I also wonder if the additional fan affected the temperature. Where did you measure temperature? At egg level? And I hate to say this, but if the first hatch was 100%, why would you change anything? Skyrocketing humidity during the hatch is normal. Just imagine all of the newly introduced liquids into the incubator. The humidity won't hurt them.
    Did you take out both of the plugs for airflow at lockdown? This will help the new ones dry out faster, breathe easier, and stabilize the humidity more quickly, too
     
  8. TammyF

    TammyF Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks again for the info. I didn't realize such high humidity was acceptable while hatching. That's what I did wrong. Trying to get the humidity adjusted I let the temp get to cool I guess. We got the fan because the humidity did skyrocket last time and up until now didn't realize that is was ok. Yes we pulled the plugs when we put them in there to hatch. If I might ask you one more thing? Do you have a type of incubator you would recommend over any of the others?
     
  9. scflock

    scflock Overrun With Chickens

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    I've had chickens for years, but just started incubating. My first run was with the exact incubator you have, and the results were horrendous. I now know that most of the problem came from my inexperience hatching, but I was so disappointed and disgusted that I waited until I could afford the most highly rated, but expensive, 24 egg incubator. I just tried my first run with a Brinsea 20 Advance, and it's idiot proof. I work long hours, can't babysit my incubator, and I needed something that was "set it and forget it". The Brinsea truly is, and if you can afford one, or are selling chickens like me, then by all means buy a Brinsea. 85+% hatch rate, and a snap to clean. All I have to do is add water every few days, and monitor more closely on lockdown. The Brinsea gives a highly accurate reading of temperature and humidity at all times, and adjustments are simple. Temperature never fluctuates more than 0.1 degree.
    Now, with all of that being said, watching the Brinsea work taught me what I did wrong with the Little Giant. I didn't buy a hygrometer. I didn't check temperatures in multiple locations. My humidity was way too high, and I can't honestly say whether the temperature was stable or not. I feel I could get a better hatch rate with styrofoam if I tried again, but the Octagon makes it possible for me to have successful hatches without constantly monitoring the incubator
     

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