Username:   Password:   
   
   -- All views and opinions expressed in this forum belong to individual UPA members and are not necessarily those of the UPA nor the Board of Directors.--
Index  FAQ  Search  Memberlist  Usergroups  Profile  Register
 Log in to check your private messages
  peachick hatch not going well
Jump to:    
  Post new topic   Reply to topic The United Peafowl Association - www.peafowl.org Forum Index » Incubation, Hatching, and Peachick care Goto page 1, 2  Next    
Author Message
drtoddh



Joined: 06 Mar 2011
Posts: 21
Location: southeastern Ohio
PostPosted: Mon Jul 18, 2011 7:53 pm Reply with quote

Hello egeryone. My peahen laid 13 eggs this year. They broke down as follows:

1 infertile
1 quitter
3 were to hatch over weekend. First egg hatched on time. chick pipped and hatched over about 12 hours. Fluffed up and is thriving
Second egg pipped into the air cell then died
Third egg pipped and opened shell about 1 inch hole. Chick seemed to tire so Ihelped it out after 24 hours. No bleeding. It never walked, just rolled around, held up head for a while but became weaker and weaker, then died today.

So at this point I am 1 chick for three eggs. There are 8 more in the incubator. Temp was 100 degrees steady on a medical grade thermomeyer the entire time. Turned eggs twice dailyuntil 3 days before hatching. Filled water troughs as directed in the GQF incubator. Any suggestions??????? Next hatch is due on Thurs. Thanks, Todd

_________________
1 pair black shouldered peafowl, EEers, Ameraucanas
View user's profile Send private message
lhROW
UPA MEMBER
UPA MEMBER


Joined: 22 Jun 2011
Posts: 243
PostPosted: Thu Jul 21, 2011 6:58 pm Reply with quote

Any signs of progress? Are you getting live chicks this time?

Hope all is going well! Cool

-- the accidental peahen
View user's profile Send private message
drtoddh



Joined: 06 Mar 2011
Posts: 21
Location: southeastern Ohio
PostPosted: Thu Jul 21, 2011 9:52 pm Reply with quote

Egg number 4 was to hatch today. Nothing. I went ahead and opened the egg. The chick was barely alive. It had never turned, it was facing the small end of the egg. Never pipped. 3 or 4 days ago, I pushed the humidity higher, my hygrometer says it is now over 80 percent. I think it was too low most of the incubation time. There are still 7 more to go, hope that something does better. Amazing how the first chick came out bouncing but each has subsequently failed. Todd

_________________
1 pair black shouldered peafowl, EEers, Ameraucanas
View user's profile Send private message
lhROW
UPA MEMBER
UPA MEMBER


Joined: 22 Jun 2011
Posts: 243
PostPosted: Thu Jul 21, 2011 10:00 pm Reply with quote

Do you have a way to candle the eggs?

If we can figure out what's going on inside, you might be able to pull some through.

Sorry you are having such a difficult time... Sad

-- the accidental peahen
View user's profile Send private message
drtoddh



Joined: 06 Mar 2011
Posts: 21
Location: southeastern Ohio
PostPosted: Fri Jul 22, 2011 3:36 pm Reply with quote

I've been candling eggs about once a week. I see plenty of movement until the chick gets to big to let light through. I've only had 1 infertile egg so far. Last 3 eggs I put in 1 week ago were left in the nest for about a week after the last was laid. I was hoping the hen would set on them, but she never did after she stopped laying. I think that these eggs (one of which laid out for over 10 days) are developing. I've got the humidity really pushed up now. They've only been in the incubator for one week, so I hope this can make a difference for them and the other eggs still in there.

Next hatch is due Monday.

Thanks for all your help and the PM. Todd

_________________
1 pair black shouldered peafowl, EEers, Ameraucanas
View user's profile Send private message
lhROW
UPA MEMBER
UPA MEMBER


Joined: 22 Jun 2011
Posts: 243
PostPosted: Fri Jul 22, 2011 4:34 pm Reply with quote

Did egg #4 ever pip internally, or could you tell? Did it ever make it to the air sac?

Were you ever able to hear either scratching or pecking noises when you held the egg to your ear?

Was there ever any chirping from either egg #4 or egg #2?

Someone told me that the darkness obscuring the shell is actually not the chick, but is actually the blood filled CAM... Of course, the chick is not transparent either. Cool

The one that I had that died in the shell, leaving what I later understood was a blood ring, actually looked somewhat different when candled. (Not the one that pipped internally and ran out of air -- this one died earlier, as best I can determine.) I now think that it died from one of two causes, either it was to the point of hatching and never pipped, or it died late in the game, possibly from bacterial contamination -- that egg was particularly dirty from the hen. But unfortunately, I didn't know how to interpret what I was seeing -- it takes a bit of practice.

This hatch (assuming we get that far!) I am going to candle more at pipping time to see if I can recognize by candling when the chick has internally pipped. Now that I know what to listen for, I think it will help me to interpret what I am seeing. I'm hoping I will be able to see the head or beak in the air sac -- it's supposed to be possible to sometimes see that with candling, so I want to try again.

I also want to see if the CAM does become clear after the chick pips into air, and then the darkness should be more like the chick shape than like the CAM lining the shell. It should be possible to interpret something (not everything!) about the progress of the chick towards transferring the blood into the chick if that can actually be observed by candling during the hatching process.

All my eggs in the first hatch had exceptionally dry conditions, very, very hard, tough shells, and very tough membranes. I think I probably could have saved one, and maybe also the one that died late with the blood ring, if I had understood what to look and listen for sooner -- but we can only do what we can with what we know at the time. Sad

With your eggs, I am wondering about the weakness that you are observing -- it could be that there is something wrong with the chicks. I have also heard that they get stronger when they transfer to breathing air -- but of course, if they exhaust themselves in an unsuccessful attempt at hatching, they can die in the attempt...

The last chick I rescued from my hatch was much more exhausted than the other two, and I wasn't sure it would pull through. It spent some hours lying in the incubator, to all appearances unconscious or sleeping, until it recovered, and became stronger. Now it is fine, and it has grown to be the biggest of the three chicks. :chickendance

If you get one that has pipped internally, adding an air hole and then letting it rest and work on its own for a period of 24 hours or so might let it get strong enough to either hatch on its own, or survive a careful rescue.

Do the chicks seem really big, or really small relative to the egg? When you candle the ones that are close to hatching, what proportion of the egg is occupied by the air sac?

When the chick from egg #3 was rolling around, was its navel closed? Was it dangling any blood cord or yellow yolk? Could you see its navel, or was the navel site sealed and healed over? Did it leave any little bloody smudges around the incubator, or have any scabbing at the site of the navel?

Hoping we can figure out what is going on so your little guy has some friends soon! Very Happy

-- the accidental peahen paperbag
View user's profile Send private message
DMFarms
Site Admin


Joined: 11 Nov 2007
Posts: 183
Location: Winona Texas
PostPosted: Fri Jul 22, 2011 8:04 pm Reply with quote

Todd
Sound like you have a foam incubator if so that could be alot of your problem they are good for chicken eggs but peafowl eggs are alot harder to hatch. I run my incubator at 99.5 and the humidity at 50% to much humidity will drown the chicks. I don't think you are turning the eggs enought I would turn them at lease 3 or 4 time a day my incubator turn them ever hour.
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
drtoddh



Joined: 06 Mar 2011
Posts: 21
Location: southeastern Ohio
PostPosted: Fri Jul 22, 2011 8:11 pm Reply with quote

Well, egg #4 never pipped, in fact the chick was facing the wrong direction completely, it's head was at the far (small) end of the egg. The yolk sack had fully gone into the abdomen. Of course there was still a lot of blood vessels on the membranes but once I started to open the air cell end, they closed down over an hour or so. So there was minimal bleeding

Egg#3 had no bleeding, it had the yolk fully in its abdomen. Looked perfectly fine except it just didn't liven up.

Odd, but the order of the chicks hatching has been getting worse

1 fine
2 and 3 one hatched with help and died a day later, one pipped and into the air cell and died

egg 4 never turned, I usually always hear them pecking in the egg the day before they hatch and then chirping once they're in the air cell, this egg never made any sound.

Let's hope Monday goes well, Todd

_________________
1 pair black shouldered peafowl, EEers, Ameraucanas
View user's profile Send private message
D C T
UPA Forum Moderator
UPA Forum Moderator


Joined: 16 Nov 2007
Posts: 872
Location: Georgia, USA
PostPosted: Fri Jul 22, 2011 10:19 pm Reply with quote

It is quite rare (in my experience) for a peachick to be completely
backwards in the egg but it does happen. The head between the
legs malposition is more common.....and in even more rare case--
the peachick can be backwards in egg AND have head between the legs.
But the simple "head between the legs" has happened enough for
me to learn to recognize is with candler and work out a rescue
procedure that saves at least 50% of those. Without the rescue
100% of those would die without ever drawing first breath.
-------
I do not use incubator except for last few days of incubation.
Chickens earn their living performing as incubators.
When a peahen incubates I usually let her raise her baby.

_________________
friendly poultry orthopedist
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
lhROW
UPA MEMBER
UPA MEMBER


Joined: 22 Jun 2011
Posts: 243
PostPosted: Fri Jul 22, 2011 11:12 pm Reply with quote

How very frustrating Sad

It sounds like you are doing every thing right -- and still having a bad year. And once your hen quit brooding the eggs (like the feral hen did here), sounds like you didn't have any good options besides incubation...

Do you suppose #4 drowned, or just never was able to get air? That one sounds like a serious malposition, and probably nothing you could do was going to fix it.

Usually when people are talking about turning and hatching, it is the chick rotating around the long axis of the shell, not somersaulting inside the shell. But that chick was apparently upside down. Maybe got stuck to the membranes earlier on in the developmental process and couldn't get where it needed to be? That could be a result of dryness or not turning enough or just pure bad luck.

The one that pipped internally might just have run out of air -- that happened to mine, and in less time than I thought I had to fix it. Who knows? Maybe an air hole would have saved it -- or maybe it just would have died a little more slowly, if the weakness was the real problem.

The one that hatched with help but failed to thrive is worrisome. One wonders if it had an infection when it was born, and that was why it needed help, or if it just wore itself out, or it got an infection in its navel, or if it had some birth defect that wasn't obvious from the outside... Confused

Aside from the weakness, the only pattern I see here (and not even sure this is accurate) is that the eggs in start to finish order have spent less time under the hen -- so the egg that did the best was also the one that spent the longest time under the hen?

The only other thing I am wondering is: how large is the air space when you candle? Others have written that eggs with very large air sacs and eggs with very small air sacs have more difficulty hatching than eggs that have air sacs that are closer to "average" size. If that's the case with your eggs, then the weakness may be a result of dealing with difficult egg/air sac size, so spending more energy trying to pip or struggling to turn or to reach the shell and/or air sac, which happened to my last one.

I don't know if any of this helps, but I wish you all the best, and hope things go better on Monday. Let us know how it comes out!

-- the accidental peahen paperbag
View user's profile Send private message
drtoddh



Joined: 06 Mar 2011
Posts: 21
Location: southeastern Ohio
PostPosted: Sun Jul 24, 2011 3:05 pm Reply with quote

Egg #5 is pipped, has a hole in the egg and is chirping strongly. Let's hope this one breaks the trend!!!!!

_________________
1 pair black shouldered peafowl, EEers, Ameraucanas
View user's profile Send private message
lhROW
UPA MEMBER
UPA MEMBER


Joined: 22 Jun 2011
Posts: 243
PostPosted: Sun Jul 24, 2011 3:11 pm Reply with quote

Hurray!!!

Something a little goofy that I did -- but it was cute, and who knows if it helped? Rolling Eyes

Every so often, I took the chick that had already hatched to the incubator, and it chirped encouragement to its siblings... So help me, the chicks were calling to each other! Cool

On the theory that every little bit helps...

-- the accidental peahen fool
View user's profile Send private message
MinxFox
UPA MEMBER
UPA MEMBER


Joined: 05 Oct 2009
Posts: 621
Location: Florida
PostPosted: Mon Jul 25, 2011 9:22 am Reply with quote

I hatched out a peachick this year from a GQF Styrofoam incubator. It was pipping wrong and thanks to a call from DMFarms we then knew that we had to help it out of the egg. It was tired when it was out but it survived. Now it is just starting to get some blue on its neck.

I turned the egg about 5 or more times a day. I figured more was better since I noticed when my peahens were on a nest they seemed to turn the eggs a lot. I am sure I got lucky though...Now to enter that incubator raffle lol. Razz
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
lhROW
UPA MEMBER
UPA MEMBER


Joined: 22 Jun 2011
Posts: 243
PostPosted: Mon Jul 25, 2011 12:25 pm Reply with quote

I hatched my three chicks in a Little Giant styrofoam incubator, and the second set of eggs (thanks to Peachick Grammie!!)) is in there now. Cool

It's not a great solution -- I bet the redwood ones have much better hatch rates -- but it was all I could find locally, and I had an emergency situation with a hen that had abandoned the nest.

The Little Giant (and I assume also the GQF) styrofoam incubator has some difficulties, as it is (1) difficult to stabilize the temperature inside the incubator, which is worsened in my house because I also have fairly wide variations in room temperature; (2) you can't set an actual temperature, and must rely on stabilizing to a thermometer or two; (3) it loses all (or most) of its heat whenever it is opened, and has to work its way back up to temperature; (4) it can't move the air around enough to prevent hot and cold spots and provide good circulation to the eggs; (5) the humidification is not necessarily adequate; and (6) it is not tall enough.

"Not tall enough" causes two problems, I think. The obvious one is that the chicks could bump their heads on the heating element after hatching. The less obvious problem, but I think more severe one, is that the larger eggs end up CLOSER to the heating element on the top part of the egg, and farther on the bottom -- I worry that the temperature gradient is such that the top of the egg could overheat from the radiant heat.

To address that height issue, I try to keep the eggs far from the heating element, because even if there is good circulation, the egg is still experiencing radiant heat from the element. Good circulation will lessen the impact of that somewhat, by cooling the surface so that the egg doesn't tend to overheat as much at the place the element is "shining" on it -- but the closeness of the element to the egg surface is problematic.

I installed a fan kit from Incubator Warehouse -- took less than 10 minutes to install, and was totally easy -- which greatly improves the circulation. There are a couple of different kits available. I tried to get one from Tractor Supply (where I found the incubator) but couldn't find one. I think it helps with the hot/cold spot problem, but it makes stabilizing the temperature even trickier, if that's possible! Still, I think the fan makes a major difference in hatchability with the little styrofoam-type incubator.

The problem of losing heat when it is opened is significant, not just because the 'bator has to warm back up, but because the process of warming back up again exposes the eggs to a lot of radiant heat from the heating element. The styrofoam is a great insulator -- but fundamentally, there is insufficient thermal mass in the incubator, so the temperature is going to go through big swings, and will have to recover from every opening.

I have added three tubs (cut down quart yogurt containers) to hold water and sponges, which not only increases the humidity, but also increases the amount of mass in the incubator which is at the correct temperature. So the tubs of water actually help stabilize the interior temperature of the incubator, and help it recover its operating temperature with less "on" time by the heating element. I keep the tubs full, because I am counting on the mass of the water to help rewarm the 'bator when it is opened. When I refill them, I use warm-to-hot water, so the element doesn't have to bring the water to the incubator temperature.

By way of analogy, when we bake in the oven, we preheat it, without the food in it. During that period of time bringing the oven to the correct temperature we can both undercook and burn the food -- the side closest to the heating element can burn, and the rest of it doesn't cook at the correct rate, because that part of the oven is too cold. Adding a fan (which turns it into a convection oven) smooths that out. Adding bricks to the oven, once they are allowed to warm, also stabilizes the oven's temperature and evens out the heating.

I am trying to figure out where to find some ceramic or stone "eggs" -- I would like to add a few, maybe a half-dozen, around the edges of the bator, to add more thermal mass. I think they would really assist in keeping the temperature stable and recovering operating temperature after opening. I could probably use regular stones or rocks, but the fake eggs would be easy to clean between hatches....

I haven't been able to figure out a good solution to the temperature setting/adjustment problems -- the best I have been able to do is use a multiple thermometer system -- there's a remote sensing digital one (two, actually) strung through one of the vent holes, and a direct read, alcohol one inside where I can see it through the window. (There would only be one digital -- but I wrecked the hygrometer part of the first one by dunking it in the water too many times, so had to get another. Since the temperature sensor still seems to work, I figured I might as well use it also.)

It is interesting (and to some extent frustrating, of course) that the various thermometers give different readings -- often by as much as two or three degrees! Shocked

I have observed that the thermometers equilibrate at different rates (even the two digitals don't reach temperature at the same speed), and there are clearly differences resulting from the placement of the thermometer sensor/bulb. It also appears that even with the fan, the heating of the air in the 'bator is not uniform -- there is not enough mixing happening BEFORE the air gets to the eggs. Ideally, I think the fresh air would be warmed and mixed before it gets to the eggs and is subsequently vented out of the 'bator. I have played around with opening and blocking various vent holes, and found an arrangement that seems to help.

The biggest problem with multiple temperature readings is knowing which one(s) to believe -- wouldn't be a big deal if they were all within 1/2 a degree. When the readings vary three degrees between them, it becomes somewhat more critical deciding which one to go with! Rolling Eyes

I've sort of figured out what to rely on, and to take into account the placement of each sensor, but it's not perfect. I need to find a known "good" thermometer and try to calibrate the ones I am using... haven't managed to do that yet.

I'm actually kind of worried about the current batch of eggs, because my temps have been running a bit on the low side. But it has been really difficult to get them up high enough and stabilized, without inadvertently getting them TOO high -- again, the adjustment of the temperature is tricky, and when you throw in a house that also doesn't hold a stable temperature... you just do the best you can, and compromise the safest direction. But I just don't know if these eggs will pull through. Sigh. Confused

I wish the overall height were greater so there could be automatic turning. The Little Giant apparently does not have room for a goose egg turner -- I think the GQF one might -- so all the turning has to be done by hand. Little Giant's literature just says it's not recommended for goose eggs. Sad

I don't know if adding the goose egg turner to the GQF (Hovabator) one brings the eggs closer to the heating element, but perhaps the eggs could be concentrated in the turner as far from the element as possible to compensate somewhat.

I've been trying to figure out if I could jury-rig a styrofoam spacer, to sit between the top and bottom halves of the 'bator -- maybe fashioning a ring of styrofoam recycled from box packing materials and cut to size -- but since the vent fan is next to the heating element, I'm afraid I won't get good heat at the bottom if I add much height. That makes me stew about some way to move the heating element to the bottom -- at which point I start contemplating buying a foam cooler chest and starting over -- or finding the money for a redwood one! Laughing

(I've actually thought about just turning the daggone thing upside down... bounce)

Anyway, to make a long story short, I think in general, hatch rates can possibly be improved -- when a styrofoam incubator is used -- by adding a fan, adding thermal mass (water tubs or chunky things that hold heat), and by careful positioning of the eggs away from the heating elements. But I sure can see why the folks with experience say the styrofoam ones aren't the best for hatching out peababies! Cool

-- the accidental peahen paperbag
(now plotting where to find some black shoulder or purple black shoulder eggs... and a redwood 'bator!)
View user's profile Send private message
drtoddh



Joined: 06 Mar 2011
Posts: 21
Location: southeastern Ohio
PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2011 10:49 pm Reply with quote

Well, egg #5 hatched out fine. No problems Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy

_________________
1 pair black shouldered peafowl, EEers, Ameraucanas
View user's profile Send private message
Display posts from previous:   
  Post new topic   Reply to topic The United Peafowl Association - www.peafowl.org Forum Index » Incubation, Hatching, and Peachick care Goto page 1, 2  Next    

    

  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum
 

phpBB skin developed by: John Olson
Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2005 phpBB Group