Oct 5, 2012

Hatch-along with The Chicken Chick, Part 8 Hatch Day!

Chicken eggs are expected to hatch on or around day 21 into incubation and should generally hatch within 24 hours of the first pip in the batch. Various factors play into the process that can either advance or delay that schedule, primarily temperature fluctuations. Temperatures slightly higher than ideal can result in a premature hatch and physical challenges for the chick. Temperatures slightly lower than ideal can cause a delayed hatch and physical impairments.
When eggs go into lockdown on day 18, chicks prepare to hatch by positioning their beaks under their right wings towards the wide end of the egg where the air cell is. For much of the journey thus far, the embryo has been supplied with nutrients and oxygen through a system of membranes and blood vessels (namely: the allantois, yolk sac and chorion). Just prior to hatching, the chick pokes its beak through the membranes (pips) into the air cell and begins breathing with its lungs.

Chicken eggs are expected to hatch on or around day 21 into incubation and should generally hatch within 24 hours of the first pip in the batch. Various factors play into the process that can either advance or delay that schedule, primarily temperature fluctuations. Temperatures slightly higher than ideal can result in a premature hatch and physical challenges for the chick. Temperatures slightly lower than ideal can cause a delayed hatch and physical impairments.

I'm confident that my Brinsea Mini Advance incubator holds a rock solid temperature, but Egg #1, had its own agenda, deciding on Day 19, that it was time to get out of Dodge. It is reasonable to expect a chick to hatch within 12-24 hours of pipping. Egg #1 certainly wasted no time at all from pip to hatch, breaking free in less than 12 hours.
Day 19, 2:00 pm, first Pip:
Day 19, 2:00 pm, first Pip:
 5:00 pm, making progress
5:00 pm, making progress
9:00 pm, moving right along!
9:00 pm, moving right along!
10:53 pm
10:53 pm
11:15pm, this chick means business
11:15pm, this chick means business
Video of chick working at midnight, Day 20 

As I write this, all of the chicks 26 hours have elapsed since the first pip and all four chicks have hatched. The chicks that hatch will wait in the incubator until they are dry and fluffy, up to 24 hours after they hatch. Opening the incubator before all of the eggs have hatched can hinder their ability to hatch.
If a pipped egg does not make progress by expanding the hole and chipping around the circumference of the shell within ~12 hours of the first pip, they may be unable to accomplish the job independently. Whether or not to assist in a hatch is a matter of personal preference. If the decision is made to help, the chick must have absorbed all of the blood in the membrane as well as the egg yolk in order to survive outside the shell. Intervening can result in the severing a blood vessel in the membranes, hemorrhage and death. Any assistance rendered should proceed very slowly and cautiously, stopping at the first sign of bleeding.

The egg in this video was brought to me by a local 4-H student= the chick had pipped more than 24 hours earlier.
For details about baby chick care, please visit my blog post here.
As I write this, all of the chicks 26 hours have elapsed since the first pip and all four chicks have hatched. The chicks that hatch will wait in the incubator until they are dry and fluffy, up to 24 hours after they hatch. Opening the incubator before all of the eggs have hatched can hinder their ability to hatch.
 Egg #4 Hatching (this 3 minute clip represents 13 minutes of actual hatching)
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28 comments :

  1. YAY!...Happy Birthday babies...that was fun and so interesting to me,I loved the video and also watched the other ones,love the song "I'll tumble for ya" while the chick was hatching.

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  2. At what age can a roster do his job? I see him try but it does not look like he makes contact..

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  3. Woot! My first hatch and I have some pips and hear some cheeping ;-) so excited!

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  4. Wonderful! That was a lot of work for that little chick! I loved the video.

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  5. Awesome! I guess chick #1 really wanted to get out :)

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  6. WOW!!! welcome to the world little chicks!! It was so exciting just watching the video .. I can only imagine the anticipation of actually watching the hatching as it was happening. Great song choice... xo C. HHL

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  7. Wow! How exciting was that? Good Morning indeed. Thank you.

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  8. Oh, Wow! This blog is exactly what I needed! I'm interested in raising chickens but have no idea where to start. I'm so excited! I can read your blog and learn all winter long. I'm definitely following you!

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  9. Hi Kathy,
    I have 2 Barred Hollands,1 Easter,1 leg horn,1 blue silkie,1 wellsummer,1 Barred rock,1 black Polish,1 blue Polish and my black Polish has hatched and is raising a leg horn crossed with a Easter. Its about six weeks old. I would love to have the magazine.

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  10. Daysiechick4/21/14, 2:04 AM

    Kathy, my broody hen had already been sitting on unfertilized eggs for 5 days before I switched them out for fertilized eggs. Will she get up and abandon the eggs after day 21 because they haven't hatched yet? I'm just worried because the eggs won't hatch until what will be her day 26 of sitting on eggs. What should I do?

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  11. TheChickenChick4/23/14, 9:18 AM

    No, they can't tell time or read a calendar. ;)

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  12. You're awesome! Thanks! :-)

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  13. Hi kathy! i have two eggs in the day 21 today, but they don't pipp or hatched a little bit yet. what can i do? should i help them out or just wait? i don't really know what to do..

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  14. The rule of thumb is to wait.

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  15. It's day 21 and I've just had a tiny peak under the broody and I was so pleased to find a pip on the shell, it was rather small, but it was a start! I couldn't resist the temptation to carefully put it p to my ear, and I heard two small cheeps coming from the pip. I put it back under the broody carefully making sure it was in the same position. Gahhhh, so excited!!!

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  16. Tracee Boynton-O'Neil5/19/14, 11:45 AM

    I may be posting this twice, as I am new at it. I just completed my third incubation and had 22 eggs. We candled at 14 days and found all but 5 were fertile. I locked down on day 18 and no hatching until day 22. By day 25 we ended up with only 4 health live chicks. 1 died after hatch and 3 died after pipping the rest did nothing at all. Out of curiosity I opened the remaining eggs and all had fully developed chicks in them. Wondering what could have happened?? The day of lockdown the temp spiked to about 105 for appx an hr and my humidity level (at lockdown and during hatch) was between 70-75%.

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  17. Love your hatching egg blog so informative! Wish I had a incubator to try my luck.

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  18. PhyllisAdelle Sherer9/29/14, 6:18 PM

    Aww :)

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  19. How long do the chics stay in the incubator after hatching?

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  20. Melinda McManus10/22/14, 10:18 AM

    Fascinating! Thanks for the info.

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  21. Shirley Benson10/22/14, 12:32 PM

    Makes me wish we were hatching out more. It was so exciting when we hatched out 10!!!!
    That's plenty for now.
    good luck with these ones.

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  22. Seramas! How adorable...

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  23. Is the egg on the right the next to hatch?

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  24. Dianne Moustafa10/23/14, 9:04 AM

    I have to thank you! This live feed has brought such a smile to my son's face! We have 6 chickens. We got our first 3 (Barred Plymouth Rock) on Sept 7 they were four weeks old then got another three (2 Ameracuanas, and 1 Buff) we had set up a coop inside the garage because of the cold outside. We have been bringing out the older girls during the warm days and wanted to let them stay out during the warmer nights. My son will not here of it! We need to transition them outside because they are all getting so big now. When is the best time to start this? We live in Massachusetts and the colder weather is upon us as you know. We just put up a semi roof on the top of their run so we can tarp it over before the snow starts.

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  25. Hi Dianne. This should help you: http://www.the-chicken-chick.com/2013/04/when-to-move-chicks-from-brooder-to.html

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  26. Help! Today is hatch day and I had an early hatcher last night. He/she has rolled the other eggs all around, including one that had already pipped. I'm so worried. I have the Brinsea Mini Advance.

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  27. Don't worry about it. They all do it!

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