Go here to see the stream: http://jeffandjillian.com/hatchcam.htm
It has been on and off today for different viewers. The camera is running and streaming the whole time, but I have had trouble getting it to load and so have others. Be patient and try again!
If you have Internet Explorer, you will be prompted to install Google Chrome frame – go ahead and say OK. If you see the outline of the video but not the video, look at the address bar at the top of your browser window. Is there an icon shaped like a rectangle that is ripped in half or broken? Click it. The page should reload and you will see the video. Whew! That was a journey, wasn’t it?
3/29 4:20 pm
I think we’re close to the end of the hatch. The last one to hatch is one of Liz’s eggs, so I am not sure what kind it is. It’s big, I’ll you that! It was trying all morning to get out of the shell. Against my better judgment I broke off some of the shell and loosened the membrane and helped it out. I don’t think it was oriented the right way, and if I hadn’t helped it may have died trying to hatch. It had trouble with its legs at first but now seems better. It is still in the incubator. The rest of the chicks have been moved to the brooder.
There are still two eggs in the incubator that have not even pipped, so I am thinking they are no longer viable. I will probably keep them in there until tomorrow night and then put them in the freezer before disposing of them.
I’ll be shutting off the webcam soon. Thanks for watching! Stay tuned for more posts about life with the chicks.
3/29 10:40 am
I just removed 3 active and dry chicks from the incubator and introduced them to the Brooder Spa. Still waiting for this new chick to hatch.
3/29 10:35 am
I’ve got 3 chicks that are running around in the incubator and they are ready for the Brooder Spa – they need to calm down and rest. But I’ve got one ready to hatch and I don’t want to slow down the hatch or risk getting the hatching chick sick by opening the incubator lid. My, these chicks are active!
3/29 10:30 am
One more chick is getting ready to hatch out. The shell is cracked all the way around, and from time to time it looks as though it might push the whole thing open and greet the world. But it hasn’t yet – it’s resting.
I put up a post about how I built the brooder. You can see it here: Making the Chicken Brooder.
3/29 7:45 am
We woke up to find that 8 more had hatched, with 4 left to go. One of the eggs that has not hatched fully looks as though it might not hatch at all. You can see where the shell was pecked out and the chick could have broken free, but now the membrane is getting dry and there is no activity. I am leaving that one in the incubator and will observe it today.
This leads to the next question: do all of the eggs always hatch? No. When you incubate the eggs in an incubator, you have a 75-85% success rate. For my clutch, this means that out of the 21 eggs I started with (I actually started with 22 but one was cracked when it went in, so I am not counting that in my totals), between 16 and 18 should hatch. I candled the eggs a few times, looking for signs of life, and in the process found that 2 of the eggs either died as embryos or were never fertile. At the time the chicks started hatching, I had 19 good eggs in the incubator. So far 15 have hatched. So, if the one that looks as though it will not hatch does not, but the other three do, I will be right in line with an 85% success rate. Even if just one more hatches and the rest do not, I will still have had what is considered a normal hatch. If all 4 left in the incubator do hatch, that would be considered impressive, given that I am using an incubator and this is my first time hatching chicks.
What’s the success rate for a broody hen? Do all of her eggs hatch? Usually not. A hen will see a higher percentage of her eggs hatch, but it will usually not be 100%.
Tally: 15 have hatched, 4 eggs left in the incubator, and out of those 4, 1 looks as though it might not finish hatching. 10 are relaxing in the brooder spa and 5 are still drying out and waking up in the incubator.
Now I’m going to write up a post about the brooder spa and show you where the next leg of the journey will take place!
3/28 10:45 pm
What a day – time for bed! As of this moment there are 5 chicks sleeping happily in the brooder and 2 chicks drying out in the incubator. That leaves 12 eggs left to hatch. I suspect that several will hatch overnight.
Tomorrow I’ll show you the brooder. I am so happy to say that the chicks in there are happy and are resting soundly. Compared to the incubator, the brooder is like a spa.
3/28 5:00 pm
Another of the Red Sex-Links just hatched: it’s a male. I am putting up a few new links, the first one is a link to my Flickr set with some photos of the new chicks.
Tally: 4 Sex Links have hatched, one female, three male. 15 left to hatch.
3/28 4:00 pm
I was mistaken – the chicks that hatched are roosters! Another Red Sex-Link just hatched and it’s dark colored – it must be a female. The others are males. AND I just spoke with someone who has hatched chicks many times before. She assured me that the gunk I was seeing from the second chick is normal. Big Sigh of Relief!
Tally: 3 Sex Links have hatched, one female, two male. 16 left to hatch.
3/28 2:30 pm
There are two chicks that have hatched fully and are having fun dancing around the incubator, rolling the other eggs over. The second chick emerged suddenly and it left behind a weird sloppy mess, which I can only believe is part of the yolk. It must not have been absorbed fully. The belly of the chick looks okay, so I am assuming she’ll be all right after she dries out a little more.
Did you hear that? I said, “she” – the two that have hatched are Red Sex-Links and they are both reddish-brown in color. They’re female!
2 hatched, 17 to go.
3/28 11:00 am
The first one is completely out of it’s shell! As it was hatching it started thrashing around in the incubator, trying to free itself of the shell that was stuck to it’s back and the membrane that was attached to it somewhere on the backside. In the process it rolled around almost all of the other eggs. It’s chirping loudly now, looking for the mother hen I guess. Since that’s me, I’m sweet talking it.
There are several other eggs that have started to pip, but so far this is the only one that has made serious progress.
3/38 6:31 am
I woke up this morning to find that the one who pipped last night and broke through its shell is still hard at work on the project. The hole is a little bigger this morning and I can see the little beak moving around. There are 3 more that pipped overnight. I will be keeping the webcam focused on the one that is furthest along in the process unless another egg is suddenly ready to hatch sooner.
3/27 11:00 pm
First pip! Here’s a photo of the first pip. I moved the webcam so it will film this egg all night. I’m off to bed – this mama needs a little rest. See you bright and early!
3/27 8:00 pm
I just heard the first chirp coming from the incubator! I am in love!!!
3/27 7:10 pm
OK folks, it’s back up and running! I am putting the video directly into this post (do you see it above?). If you are using Internet Explorer, you can’t see it. Can you switch to using Chrome or Firefox, or another browser? Internet Explorer doesn’t support this format of streaming video (no surprise there, as IE usually doesn’t support a lot of the wonderful things on the web).
3/27 3:00 pm
I just removed the link to the webcam because Jeff is putting up a new, improved page for us to see. Stay tuned.
Original Post, 3/27
Starting at this very moment, I’m live streaming the hatch. The camera is set upon the incubator and looks in over 8 of the 19 eggs that are ready to hatch. As the chicks hatch I’ll move the camera around for a better view. I’ll be keeping this post sticky and will add new info about the hatch as it progresses.
When will they hatch? Hopefully on Wednesday, March 28. I put them in the incubator at 11:30 pm on Wednesday, March 7. March 28 is Day 21, and that is when the chicks should hatch. As long as the humidity level in the incubator was sufficient and the eggs were turned regularly, they should hatch just fine. Being a first-timer at this, I have no idea how it will work out.
Would you like to watch along with me?
The video page is password protected, not to keep anyone out, but because the camera settings require it. It doesn’t tell me anything about who is logging in, rather it is used to protect the camera. Both username and password are case-sensitive.
This is the link: I removed it until an updated link is ready
After I logged in, I had to allow a plugin to run, and then click through 2 messages that popped up. You may have to jump through the same hoops. I know, it seems like a lot of clicking to reach these chicks, doesn’t it?
Are you ready? Let’s see what happens over the next 36 hours!