Incubating eggs update, Day 21

Well, they’ve been arriving thick and fast (and somewhat noisily) today. Fifteen so far I think, with another three eggs that have pipped though it’s not easy to tell looking through the lids. Sadly we also had one Marans that broke through the shell but seems to be stuck to the inner membrane of the egg. The chick is still alive, but I’m not sure of his chances. Sadly there’s not much we can do other than wait it out and see what happens. I’ll give the remaining eggs a few more days, but after Sunday I’d be surprised if any more hatch.

In terms of incubator performance, far more of the eggs in the Brinsea incubator have hatched or pipped (fourteen-ish) so far than in the Suro (only six-ish), despite the humidity control in the Suro (again the numbers aren’t definite because telling which eggs have pipped is tricky as mentioned earlier). That’s quite disappointing. Across the breeds, seven of the Marans and Cream Legbars have hatched or pipped so far and six of the Leghorns (that figure for the Marans does include the one that may not make the trip), so the viability seems fairly consistent across the breeds.

Those that have hatched have been transferred to a large plastic box which is big enough to allow them to run around and has space for water and food as well as a heater. That’s where they’ll stay for the next week or thereabouts depending on how fast they develop. There’s also a mesh lid on the box. The cats can’t be trusted to do anything other than what comes naturally.

A few pictures of the first few out. The first is a Cream Legbar hen. They’re an “autosexing” breed — the chicks have different colouring depending on their sex. The second is a Marans and I can’t recall if the third is a Cream Legbar cockerel or a Leghorn.

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