June 19, 2020 at 8:31 am #8389
Well, I had one egg hatch on Wednesday (2nd nesting), checked yesterday and again this morning and still have 4 eggs remaining. Never had this happen to this extent before – maybe 1 or 2 eggs not hatched for never 4. Mama is still sitting but I am having bad vibes here – it has been pretty hot a few days, in upper 90’s, but I do have good ventilation and heat shields on the box. I’m trying to keep a positive attitude here, but if other eggs do’t hatch today I’m afraid they are not viable. My first hesting all 5 hatched in one of my smaller sized boxes. This pair chose another smaller Gilwood box, even though we had just put out a new larger one in January. Can’t control mother nature but this will sure put a downer on this season if they don’t hatch.
Question – if they do not hatch in a day or so, any opinions about taking them out of box? 4 eggs remaining with 1 baby trying to survive will be hard without eggs getting broken, etc.June 19, 2020 at 9:29 am #8390David in Stafford,VAParticipant
I am not sure Carol. If the eggs were laid in the normal 1-a-day sequence, they should all hatch within a 4-5 day period at most (if each egg needs the full 14 days to hatch). I would give it another day or so just to be sure. I don’t know of a way to visually check to see if the embryo is still “alive”.
Good luck. We can only hope for the best.
- This reply was modified 3 years, 5 months ago by David in Stafford,VA.
Stafford, VAJune 19, 2020 at 10:15 am #8392
Carol……that sure is strange. I hope they hatch soon. I seem to remember someone else say their eggs hatched 5 days late. Normally your nestings go smoothly, fingers crossed this will workout. Best of luck‼️
Judy-MichiganJune 19, 2020 at 11:47 am #8399
Carol, you know that songbirds don’t begin incubation until the last egg is laid. In this they differ from raptors who begin incubation immediately and thus their eggs hatch sequentially. The result is that most songbird eggs hatch within a day or two of each other.
That lone hatchling doesn’t pose a threat right now to the eggs. I would leave the whole thing alone for the next day or two and then have a look. I wish I could say I have a hard and fast rule for removing eggs but I don’t. If there is one I usually leave it for at least a week and sometimes I never take it out.
Sorry to have been away for so long. In these not so normal times, I don’t seem to have much motivation to get in front of a computer.
Atlanta, GAJune 19, 2020 at 11:52 am #8400
One more thing. You could candle if you take them out and see what is going on in the eggs. That’s pretty easy to do in a dark room with a pen light.
Another thing you can do when/if you take them out is give them a good, hard look. With bad eggs you will see a clearly defined difference in color displayed on the shell. One part will be darker than the other and it’s a strongly defined difference.
Atlanta, GAJune 19, 2020 at 12:48 pm #8401
Gin, it is so good to hear from you – been missing you. Thanks for this information – I knew I didn’t want to do anything with the 3 unhatched eggs for another 2 or 3 days – I’m still hoping they will hatch. I really didn’t know they could vary 3 or 4 days of each other – yes, they were laid one each day for 5 days and she began incubating right away. I couldn’t remember about how to candle the eggs and about one part being darker than the other – don’t ever remember this. But will sure keep this in my records. Gin, think the heat would anything to do with this situation? Like I said I do have a heat shield the box and has good ventilation, but no shade whatsoever.
David, also thank you for your information, also. I really needed help on this matter. I wouldn’t be too concerned if it were just one egg left, but 4 was really upsetting me. Judy, thank for your concern, also.June 19, 2020 at 1:18 pm #8402David in Stafford,VAParticipant
Carol – 3 eggs – did another one hatch? I would definitely wait another day or so to see if the others hatch. Maybe the heat messed up the incubation cycle for the female if she left the box for a long period of time.
Gin – good information. I had not heard about candling a colored shell egg. I guess if it is thin enough it would work. I also did not know about the coloring difference on the shells. I have noticed white streaks every once in a while but not a difference in the main color. But I have only had a couple of eggs that did not hatch. Like Carol said, it is good to see you back.
- This reply was modified 3 years, 5 months ago by David in Stafford,VA.
Stafford, VAJune 19, 2020 at 3:28 pm #8405
David, no it is 4 unhatched eggs – I just was so upset didn’t know what I was saying I guess. Windstorm going on right now so won’t be checking until tomorrow.
Just noticed your other post – glad to see you have that 2nd nesting with 1st egg in it! Thanks for all the photos.June 20, 2020 at 5:18 pm #8419
Well, update on unhatched eggs – looked this morning and only saw 2 unhatched eggs but could not see very well and think there was just still one baby. The other eggs may be buried deep in the nest. I am going to check again tonight and open the top of the box so I can see better – my box is a front opener and was just pulling the door down to check. (We put a hinge on the top of the box with screw ties to we could open it when wanted -our homemade Gilwood boxes are all this way)
Keeping my toes & fingers crossed – mama and papa are still around the box – anytime I go near the box papa shows up & mama will fly out- but have not seen them bring any food to the box but it is at the back of our yard – I keep eye out with binoculars quite a bit. For sure I have decided I will wait a full week before I even think about checking the eggs to see if viable.
P.S. My new shipment of mealworms are larger than normal and this may be why they have not brought any to this new baby yet.June 20, 2020 at 6:40 pm #8420
Well, went out to check again with the top of box opened – still SEE 3 unhatched eggs but only one baby, who seems to be alive – other egg is probably buried in nest or underneath baby. Will wait until Wednesday (one week from 1st hatch) to check & do something about the eggs. I could accept this better if I had a clue to why eggs didn’t hatch. Only thing I can think of when we mow grass she comes off the nest – but we are careful to be quick to get out of that area swiftly but maybe she was off the eggs too long some time.June 20, 2020 at 8:58 pm #8421
Carol…I was hoping for better news. This sure is strange. I’m glad you are going to wait a week from the 1st hatch before you do anything. Let nature take its course, knowing you have done everything right. Hang in there…..good luck.
Judy-MichiganJune 22, 2020 at 9:02 am #8429JulieParticipant
Carol, so sorry to hear what you’re dealing with! It can be so discouraging, esp when you’re doing everything like normal (aka right!). Fingers and toes crossed for you. So happy David & Gin could share some advice. Keep us posted.June 23, 2020 at 9:26 am #8434
David, white streaks on eggs are fecal smears. Birds are kind of primitive.
Carol, songbird egg hatch times do not vary by that many days. One to two days’ variation at most. Raptor eggs hatch sequentially, most times a couple of days in between.
You didn’t do anything to cause the hatch failure. Some eggs contain nonviable embryos; some are not fertilized. I have had a few clutches over the years where only one hatched. Made for lots of room in the box and one very well fed chick!
Atlanta, GAJune 23, 2020 at 10:12 am #8436
Gin, again thanks for all the info. Yes.this morning 6 days after first hatch we went out & looked – had 3 unhatched eggs still & only one baby. Parents must have removed one egg or it is deep in nest. I put the eggs in a padded container (did see a small dark area on one) & candled them in the dark with a pin light – saw nothing there. So holding my breath I broke open one egg and nothing but liquid, also the other two. Sad news, but like you said that lone baby is getting plenty of attention and is good size and lots of room to move around. Papa blue sure keeps close watch on it. There is always something to learn each year and it is so good to have this forum to discuss all happenings, good and bad. Thanks to Cher & other sponsors, etc.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, TAMMY – WHERE ARE YOU KEEPING YOURSELF? Love to hear how that grandchild is doing and learning about birds.June 23, 2020 at 8:03 pm #8445
Carol, sorry the 4 eggs did not hatch. It makes you wonder what happened, especially weird since her first brood all hatched. Maybe this nest was a different papa, mama or different pair. Who knows….we can only speculate. With only one baby to feed it should be well feed and fledge strong.
I hope you get a third nesting and everything works out great.
P.S. Thanks for recommending Grubco…I ordered yesterday and received them this morning. All in good condition and no smell….yay. This time I knew what to expect, thanks to you. 😁
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