Why didn't they hatch?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by newchickiemomma, Dec 11, 2012.

  1. newchickiemomma

    newchickiemomma Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 19, 2009
    I have been trying to hatch chicks for years, with only one success in an incubator, but that chick died. So, I bought 3 Cochin chicks last spring. One went broody a month ago, so I moved her into a cage in our heated garage and she was such a faithful setter. She started with two eggs, then I added two more the next day and then two more the next day. She had six total. She got up less than once a day, and then at the end, she wasn't getting up at all, so I put her food and water where she could reach while sitting. I was sure they would hatch and none did! Today, I put her back in the coop and opened the eggs. There was at least one completely formed chick and then some partially formed others. I want to try again, but I want it to work! What can I do differtly next time? Since she's new to this, should I start with less eggs, 4 maybe?
     
  2. ChickensRDinos

    ChickensRDinos Chillin' With My Peeps

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    How long did she sit? Did she give up on the eggs or did you take her off? It sounds like they needed more time.
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2012
  3. Shelshanam

    Shelshanam Out Of The Brooder

    Incubator or broody hen, nature sometimes just has a reason for why some eggs don't hatch.

    Incubator wise you need to make sure your temperatures are staying consistent, and humidity levels are correct (tons of information available here for what those should be).

    As for your broody hen being new it sounds like she did her part unless she was getting up for long periods of time during the middle of the hatch. But I've seen a hen that would take off for a couple hours each day and come back to sit and had a 90% hatch rate.

    Give her some time and let her get a clutch of eggs gathered up, and nature should instruct her when to start.
     
  4. CelticOaksFarm

    CelticOaksFarm Family owned, family run

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    If you keep adding two eggs each day over say a weeks time and she is already sitting the eggs will be due at different times. Removing her and opening the eggs kills the still growing chicks inside.

    Normally a broody will keep going about her business until she collects the number of eggs she wants to sit. Then she will sit faithfully to incubate and hatch the eggs. of course not all may hatch do to any number of reasons.
     
  5. nurse_turtle

    nurse_turtle Chillin' With My Peeps

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    When I have a broody, I give her the eggs I want her to hatch. I give them all at one time and don't add any extra on different days. The source of eggs will affect the hatch rate. Try a couple different egg sources/parents. I ALWAYS get better hatch rates from my broodies than my incubator.
     
  6. newchickiemomma

    newchickiemomma Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 19, 2009
    Since I gave her eggs on three different days, she sat for 24 days from the last day that I gave her eggs.
     
  7. newchickiemomma

    newchickiemomma Out Of The Brooder

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    So, here's how to happened: I noticed that she went broody and started sitting on a Thursday. She only had two eggs under her, so the next day I only got two eggs from my hens, so I gave her those to sit on too. The day after that was Saturday and my hens layer two eggs again, so I gave her those and then that was all I gave her. So, she sat on the last days (Saturdays) eggs for a 24 days and she sat on Thursdays eggs for 26 days. Next time, I will do it on the same day. I'll have to save some eggs.
     
  8. newchickiemomma

    newchickiemomma Out Of The Brooder

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    We live in Colorado and its been really dry. Could the lack of humidity affect the hatching? Doesn't mama hen keep them moist, though? Just a thought I had.
     

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