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When Should I Move the Chicks from the Incubator to the Brooder?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by wsdareme, Jun 22, 2010.

  1. wsdareme

    wsdareme Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My chicks have all hatched and are now 9-22 hours old. They're in a Brinsea Mini Advance incubator, which is still fogged up inside so the humidity must still be pretty high. The chicks are STILL very wet. Do I leave them in the incubator until they're completely dry? Or can I move them to their brooder? They don't seem to be drying out in there. I have to attend an all-day meeting today and am in a dilemma as to whether I move them before I leave or wait until I get home... [​IMG]
     
  2. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Are they coordinated and mobile? If so, it's safe to move them to the brooder. They need to be able to get under the heat and away from the heat, though, since it isn't thermostat regulated.

    I would be a little nervous, though, about putting them in the brooder and then going off for the day. I like to be able to watch them for a few hours. In fact, we lost three quail babies last night because I put them in the brooder and then went to bed. They got trapped under a towel under the brood lamp and died from the heat.

    In your case, I'd open the incubator, remove the water & shell pieces and other sources of moisture, let it air out for a minute or two with the lid open, then put the babies back in and leave them till you get home. They'll be fine in there where the temp is just right, and with the sources of humidity removed they should dry out some.

    When you get home you can put them in the brooder and watch them for a while to make sure they're comfortable and safe.
     
  3. chicmom

    chicmom Dances with Chickens

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    They can be in there up to 72 hours. I would say it's way too humid in there and that's why they are not drying. You could put them in your brooder as long as you are SURE that you've got the temps right for them so they don't get chilled.

    Or, can you open a vent on your incy to let some humidity out and leave them in there.......
     
  4. wsdareme

    wsdareme Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:If I leave them in there, will the high humidity hurt them?
     
  5. sonjab314

    sonjab314 Constant State of Confusion

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    I agree with chicmom, open a vent on your bator. That will help the humidity to go down. If you don't have a vent, then I'd move them into the brooder.
     
  6. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I don't think the high humidity will hurt them--certainly not as badly as overheating or chilling would. But you should be able to fix the humidity by removing all sources--water pans & remnants of shell & gunk from the hatch--and opening the bator to let the moisture out for a minute or two. Take a clean towel and dry the condensation from the window and walls--you don't have to be thorough--just get the obvious bits.

    Then you can put the babies back in and leave for work knowing that they are safe, the right temp, and will probably be dry when you get home.

    Good luck!
     
  7. Kedreeva

    Kedreeva Longfeather Lane

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    I personally remove mine from the incubator when they hatch for two reasons; one, they play kickball with the other eggs and 2, I have a staggered hatch going so I don't want them trapped under the auto turner. However, my brooder is atypical and has a heating pad under half of it, which fluffs them out in under half an hour. They are usually up and plodding around the brooder in 3-4 hours, but I keep watch on them the first 20 minutes or so to make sure they aren't shivering or panting. If you have enough time to watch them for a bit before your meeting it probably wouldn't hurt to take them out, but if you're worried, they're fine to stay in the incubator too. It's sort of a judgment call.
     
    1 person likes this.
  8. wsdareme

    wsdareme Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Got home from my meeting and found a disaster in the incubator. One chick is pretty much dead, and the rest are not doing well. They are all still sopping wet, and the incubator STINKS. I grabbed them out and put them in the brooder, which is around 95-100 degrees. I tried dipping the dying chick's beak in sugar water, but I think it's too late. I tried dipping the others' beaks, too, but only a couple were vigorous to look like they were trying to swallow. I guess now it's up to Mother Nature, but I sure feel guilty. Can anyone give me advice on what to do to save the remaining chicks?
     
  9. Kedreeva

    Kedreeva Longfeather Lane

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    That sucks [​IMG] Mine dry way slow in the incubator, which is another reason I take them out (aside from that I don't want anyone to lose their head to the auto turner). If they dry out in the brooder and still won't take the water on their own (or eat) you can try giving them the sugar water with an eyedropper (be careful not to get it down the wrong pipe!) or else softening some chick starter with water and giving it with an eye dropper. Water you can put near the corner of their mouths and they SHOULD react by swallowing and food you can put to the back of their throats and massage down... It's hard to do though so if you don't know how or don't know anyone who can show you how, you may just have to wait and see. Buuuut I mean, if you think they're going to die anyway, it may not hurt to give it a try even if you don't know.

    Sorry this has happened! Good luck with the babies, I hope some of them make it *fingers crossed*
     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2010
  10. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh NO!! [​IMG]

    I am so so so sorry. I feel responsible because I suggested that keeping them in the incubator would be safer than taking them out. I wonder what happened? I have left mine in the incubator for 24 or more hours on occasion and they've been fine. And then I felt awful because last night three quail died in the brooder when I maybe should have left them in the incubator...

    I can't imagine what it was, unless the humidity really did do them some harm. You must feel so sad, and I'm so sorry for your loss. It is true that sometimes nature is brutal and you shouldn't beat yourself up too much over it. It's certainly not *your* fault--you were trying to do what was best for them.

    I hope the rest of them make it through. [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     

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