Saturday, November 26, 2011


When the eggs were a day overdue, I candled them again, and I could tell that they were not viable.  Since I'm curious, I sealed them in a ziploc bag, and opened them all up.

1 egg stopped developing around day 13-14.

3 eggs stopped developing around day 10.

1 egg stopped developing around day 7

1 egg stopped around day 3-4.

I'll admit that I'm pretty upset about it.  I had an emotional attachment to the idea of hatching MY chickens' eggs. It would've been nice to have a legacy. I didn't cry when I found my chickens dead and had to bury them, though I wanted to.  I did cry a little when I realized the eggs weren't going to hatch.  I think that it was also for the loss of the hens as well- I'd pinned my hopes on these eggs.  Also, to see that they had started developing and died for some reason was difficult. I wondered what I'd done wrong, and if it could have been prevented.

I mailed my incubator back to Brinsea today. The autoturn feature on it was broken, and they'd given me a return authorization so I could get it repaired. When the chicken tragedy struck, I wanted to try to hatch before I sent it back.  Hopefully I'll get it back in a month or so.

Once it comes back, I will do a test incubation at home to make sure it's turning the eggs ok and will hatch successfully. Then, I'll do a couple incubations at my kids' schools. I mentioned it in casual conversation, and I have three teachers at three schools who are really excited at the idea of hatching chicks in class.

I'm embarrassed to admit I'm so broken up over some birds.

Monday, November 21, 2011


Well, there's three days left for all but one of us.  We have officially gone into lockdown.

It's gotten quiet in here. As we suspected, Big Momma candled us again, and she's really concerned that several of us went to join Egg #5 in the henhouse in the sky. She's really hoping that at least a couple of us are kicking, but we're not giving anything away.

Stay tuned- we'll know more by Friday, I think.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

4-6 days left!

Some interesting developments for us.  Big Momma candled #5 again a couple days ago, and found it was way too clear to be this far along, so she took it out of the incubator.  Being the curious sort, she sealed it in a ziploc bag, then cracked it open to see what was inside. Inside, she found the remains of a chick that stopped developing around day 5.

So, five of us are due on Thursday, and one of us is due on Saturday. Big Momma tried to candle on day 2, and realized Egg #3 had a big crack in it, so she replaced it with a different one.

At this point, she's worried that the humidity is too high in the incubator- there's a lot of condensation on the walls of the incubator. Big Daddy, an engineer, thinks it's because of the cold air in the room around it (more so than when there was an incubator hatch in August).

Big Momma is trying really hard not to candle anymore, but we suspect she's going to break down and try it at least one more time before lockdown. However, she hasn't for 4-5 days, and that's pretty long time.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

How Incubating is Better Than Gestating

I've been thinking about this, and considering I've gestated 4 children, and incubated and hatched eggs, I can safely say that incubating is much better.

Nobody "accidentally" incubates an egg to hatching. Lots of people accidentally get pregnant.

I don't get fat incubating.

Incubating chickens only takes 21 (ish) days.  Gestating a human takes 280 (ish) days.

No stretch marks.

I can see what's going on inside the egg whenever I want using just a flashlight. No doctor, ultrasound machine or appointment necessary.

No labor or childbirth or surgery for me.

No doctor appointments

No hospital bills

No postpartum yuckiness

No morning sickness

Chicks are MUCH lower maintenance than human newborns

What do you think?

Monday, November 14, 2011


We don't feel that we get nearly enough time on the main blog. Many readers feel like we get entirely TOO much time, and say, "enough with the chickens already!!"

So, we decided to start our own blog.

You must be thinking that we are extraordinarily smart for chickens. You'd be right. Most chickens aren't known for being particularly bright. But here we are, in our embryonic state, and we're already typing on a blog. Impressive, no?

Our moms and their friends- Our moms are the brown ones
We had to learn to be tough- the fact that we're here, and not eaten is sort of a miracle. Well, a miracle for us. Not good news for our moms.

Our Dad
See, here's what happened.  Our moms are Easter Eggers. Our dad is a Black Copper Marans. Our moms laid us, and we were collected, and put in an egg carton and put in the fridge, destined to be an omelet, breakfast burrito or cookies. But, 11 days ago, something got into the chicken coop and killed all of the mommies. Our dad survived. He ended up going to live with another family where there are 13 hens- our Big Momma thought he'd be less lonely there.

candling day 5
 Momma was really, really sad about our moms. She decided to take us out of the fridge and put us in the incubator. The incubator's turner is broken, and she'd actually had it all boxed up to send out to be repaired. Thank goodness she is a very busy lady and hadn't gotten around to it! So now, we're sitting in the incubator, growing and growing, and Big Momma turns us several times a day.

candling day 10
There are seven of us altogether, but we kind of think that #5 is a dud. No communication at all there, and Big Momma can't see anything when she peeks at us with a flashlight.

Anyway, we're kind of busy growing, and developing and all. Keep your fingers crossed that lots of us hatch, and that we're all girls- we know that girls tend to be more valuable than boys in the chicken world, and they're a lot quieter and nicer. We should arrive right around Thanksgiving.