Worse hatch of my life

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by mandelyn, Jun 27, 2011.

  1. mandelyn

    mandelyn Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 30, 2009
    Goshen, OH
    Ok, I just got done with the worse and most traumatic hatch of my life last evening with Wheaten Maran eggs. My husband thinks the parent stock must have been inbred to cause the vast array of issues. I'm going to be scarred for life, is all I can say. I've hatched A LOT of birds, and I've never seen anything like this.

    What causes...

    Cross beak?
    Missing eyes?
    Backward legs super loose in the joints?
    Large swelling at the base of the skull?
    Curled toes as if they're claws?

    I didn't open anymore eggs, I didn't want to know what was inside. Several we had to end quickly, it was just... too bad. That's where the scarred for life thing comes from. Splay leg is one thing, but this..... this was... traumatic. You all have no idea how awful my weekend was.

    I was SO excited when that first chick popped out of the egg and started running circles in the incubator, on a mission for life. Her name is Perfect, since she's the only one that is.

    3 other chicks are in the brooder, I have low hopes for one, it has swelling at the base of the skull (some what reduced today and it can lift it's head) and one leg has.. claw foot? I don't know the terms for this stuff. The toes are curled in on themselves and it doesn't seem to have mobility to them. It has until tomorrow afternoon to make improvement when the yolk sac is pretty well used up. Vitamins have been added to the water and I try to work the foot and have the leg splinted straight.

    2 others.. one was somewhat lethargic but otherwise appears fine. It was quite perky this morning so I have high hopes for it. The other, had legs going in the wrong direction at the hip joint when it hatched. It was also on the wrong end of the egg. I put the legs where they needed to be and set it up in a tray in the incubator for 24 hours. That helped it SO much, and it now has mobility and can stand. It's still working on walking, but it's much improved.

    The only one that cries is the one with the swelling and claw foot. The others haven't shown any distress at all.

    I am... exhausted and traumatized. The worse thing I have ever seen before is splay leg and one blind chick years ago. But this... I don't even know. I used the same incubator and the same methods I've always used. The only thing different was the eggs. I did have an issue with humidity running too high but that's nothing new either, I always battle humidity. The results were eggs that never pipped and the ones that did come out were sticky. Never anything like this.

    Of the 7 eggs I opened, only 2 others seemed fine. The rest... ugh. I don't want to talk about it. I just tossed the rest last night, I didn't feel curious anymore. I felt angry and sickened.
  2. farmgirlforever18

    farmgirlforever18 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 5, 2010
    Dublin TEXAS
    I am so so sorry about that i don’t really know what could of caused that maybe it was the parents something in there gene but i really don’t know hope your 3 make it
  3. zebserema

    zebserema Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 17, 2011
    i doubt that it was inbreeding because most of the bad traits of inbreeding have been breed out of chickens long ago they are just like that so that they can survive but that sounds horrible dont post pics they might be worse than i think
  4. LilyD

    LilyD Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 24, 2011
    Bristol, VT
    Wow I am so sorry that sounds terrible [​IMG]
  5. mandelyn

    mandelyn Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 30, 2009
    Goshen, OH
    I didn't take any photos of the ones who didn't make it... I couldn't. Never want to see it again!

    It's just so weird... never seen anything like it and the incubation process was business as usual.
  6. Duramaxgirl

    Duramaxgirl Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 12, 2010
    I'm sorry you had such a bad hatch!
    What type of bator did you use? And where they all the same breed of bird?
  7. mandelyn

    mandelyn Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 30, 2009
    Goshen, OH
    Hovabator 1602, same one I've been using for more than 10 years.

    The eggs were all the same breed and from the same person. Though I wish now I had another dozen in there for comparison from someone else.

    "i doubt that it was inbreeding because most of the bad traits of inbreeding have been breed out of chickens long ago"

    ... That's impossible with all the breeders and lines and what happens in backyards all across the world. Recessive genes can pop in at any time and is more prone to happen when the genetics get too close together, increasing the odds of a match being made between undesirable recessive traits. If the breeder I got them from was doing inbreeding instead of line breeding (difference being brother to sister instead of grand sire to grand daugther or something less extreme) then it's entirely possible. I don't know what breeding practices he follows and what his theories are. A normal looking bird doesn't mean it is free from recessive traits, there's a lot of genetic material in them that doesn't get expressed in themselves.

    All I know, is that I've never encountered this before in all the countless hatches I've had. It was rampant through all of them but a couple. Maybe he sprayed round up in the breeder pen. Maybe the well water was contaminated. Who knows. But to get only one normal chick out of 16 that developed... with all the normal stuff on my end being done the same as always... something happened somewhere before I got them.

    They weren't shipped either, I had made a plan to avoid shipped eggs from those bad hatches. Never any deformities from those, just poor hatch rates the 3 times I tried with very few making it to lockdown.

    I was SO excited when 16 went to lockdown! It was so promising. Little did I know the majority were messed up.
  8. CatDaddyAlbert

    CatDaddyAlbert NoFeathersRuffled

    Apr 22, 2011
    Gumboro, Delaware

    I have a question and then maybe a answer. Were they your eggs or did you get them from somebody (I'll bet)?

    I will follow the post.

  9. ByeByeBlackBird

    ByeByeBlackBird Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 10, 2011
    Falls Village CT
    Im thinking temp spikes, or drops. Do you take a reading on temperature at least twice daily? Even Three times a day? Is anyone else checking the bator while you are elsewhere? Children, Spouse, Friends?

    It sounds like at a crucial point in development something happened, at the same time, to have SO many eggs involved, temperature and humidity and airflow play a pretty big role in most egg hatched creatures, not JUST purely genetics.
  10. zebserema

    zebserema Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 17, 2011
    i have never heard of chicks being deformed from inbreeding in the wild they always breed like that [​IMG]

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