why are my chicks dying during lockdown???

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by gladahmae, Oct 6, 2012.

  1. gladahmae

    gladahmae Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 17, 2012
    Benzie, MI
    I'm really concerned about what has happened in my past 2 hatches. We are getting shipped eggs, having about 30% of the go into lockdown, and then have 2 eggs hatch. With the first batch, we had 7 in lockdown (2 hatched) and this past batch we had 11 in lockdown, and 2 hatched. I kept a spreadsheet this time, so I have a better handle on what is going on statistically.

    Out of the 11 eggs this time, we had:

    2 hatches, on day 20 and day 21
    2 late quitters
    3 dead in the shell with no pip, and not in position to pip
    4 that either DID pip internally, or were trying to pip internally

    of those last 4, 2 of them (the ones that DID internally pip) the yolk was mostly absorbed.

    Humidity has been good (30-40% for the beginning, and then 65-75% during lockdown), the chicks weren't shrink wrapped, and we only canded on day 10 and day 18. Temps never went over 101, or under 98.6, and 101 wasn't for more than an hour or 2, AND that series of spikes was during days 13-16, NOT at the end.

    Why are HALF of the eggs that are going into lockdown just not making it? I cannot figure out what is going on, and DH is ready to be done with incubating if this is the trend we're going to have.

    I understand that *some* chicks just don't make it out of the shell, but HALF??? HALF?! With our first batch there were 3 (of 7) that were also positioned to hatch, and didn't.

    I don't get it. Help me please!
     
  2. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Chicken Obsessed

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    On the MN prairie.
    Are you getting your eggs from the same source?
     
  3. gladahmae

    gladahmae Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 17, 2012
    Benzie, MI
    No. The first set we did were from 2 different sources, one source we didn't hatch any, and the other we hatched the 2. THIS hatch, one source hatched 0 and the other (2 different breeds) we hatched 2 of the one breed. All of the other breed didn't make it.

    It's really discouraging to keep failing on such a large level! Our hatch rate is something like 7% if you go off of original number of eggs set.
     
  4. maryhysong

    maryhysong Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 24, 2012
    Claypool, Arizona
    perhaps your thermometer/thermostat isn't right? I borrowed a little still air bator with the old style metal wafer thermostat and used a cheap Walmart thermometer on top of the eggs to keep an eye on the temp. I did check the thermometer against several and chose one from a group of three that had the exact same temp.

    I don't have a hygrometer, just put a small tray of water in for most of the time; added another tray ful when I went to lock down.

    This was my very first hatch and I had 100% on my banty eggs and so far 4 out of 7 Welsummer eggs have hatched. Not sure the other three are going to but presume the problem is with the eggs and not with the bator since they are all in there together.

    Hoping you can figure out what is going wrong and you get a more successful hatch!
     
  5. gladahmae

    gladahmae Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 17, 2012
    Benzie, MI
    I checked my thermometer against a few others and they were all within 0.5deg of eachother and I calibrated my hygrometer (it read 3% higher than it should have). I'm wondering if it was too much humidity?? Maybe I need to shoot for 60%?
     

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