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14.  Trouble Shooting Failures With Egg Incubation

When incubation of eggs fails, indications are often available that a well trained professional uses for diagnosing the causes for failure. The information listed below includes the more common symptoms for incubation failures, the causes for each symptom, and the recommended corrective measures

Symptoms of incubation/breeder management problems include:

1)      Clear eggs with no visible embryonic development.

2)      Blood rings in incubated eggs.

3)      Many dead embryos at an early stage.

4)      Chicks fully formed, but dead without pipping.

5)      Pipped eggs, but died without hatching.

6)      Early hatching (may have bloody navels).

7)      Late hatching or not hatching uniformly.

8)      Sticky embryos.

9)      Embryos sticking or adhering to shell.

10)  Crippled and malformed chicks.

11)  Abnormal, weak, or small chicks.

12)  Chicks with labored breathing.

13)  Large, soft-bodied mushy chicks; dead on trays; bad odor.

14)  Rough or unhealed navels on chicks

15)  Gasping Chicks.

16)   Delayed hatch; eggs do not starting to pip until 21st day or later 

17)   Draggy hatch, some chicks early

18)  Short down on chicks.

19)  Excessive yellow down color.

 

Symptom  1 :- Clear Eggs with no embryonic development (infertile).

Problem Cause Corrective Measures

Males undernourished

Follow a recommended feeding program to provide adequate nutrition. Replace underweight males with vigorous ones
Too few males Increase the number of males in the flock.
Seasonal decline in fertility Use young cockerels more resistant to environmental stress.
Seasonal decline in fertility Use young cockerels more resistant to environmental stress.
Competition among breeding males Do not use too many males. Rear all males together. Place temporary partitions within large pens.
Diseased flock Conduct an approved disease control program.
Frozen combs and wattles Provide comfortable housing. Properly select and maintain drinking fountains.
Old males Replace with younger males.
Selected mating in pens Artificially inseminate infertile hens. Replace males in the pen/house.
Male sterility Replace males in the pen/house.
Crowded breeders Provide recommended floor space, at least 3 ft²/bird.
Improper artificial insemination techniques or use of old/over-diluted semen. Follow recommendations of primary breeder company.
Eggs damaged by environment Gather eggs frequently (at least once daily).
Eggs stored too long or incorrectly Store eggs at 50-60 degrees F. and 60% relative humidity. Incubate eggs within 7 days of lay.

 

Symptom  2:- Blood rings in incubated Eggs.  

Problem Cause Corrective Measures
Improper storage Follow recommended egg storage and gathering recommendations.
Improper incubation temperatures Check thermometer accuracy and incubator functions. Follow recommended temperature settings.
Improper breeder nutrition Feed breeders a diet with balanced nutrient levels.
Improper fumigation Follow fumigation recommendations.

Symptom  3:- Many dead embryos at early stages.  

Problem Cause Corrective Measures
Improper incubation temperatures (usually too high) Check accuracy of thermometer. Follow recommended incubation temperatures.
Improper egg turning Turn eggs at regular intervals.
Inherited low hatchability Avoid cross breeding. May need to secure different breeding stock.
Improper ventilation/ Lack of ventilation Increase ventilation rate in incubator and/or room, but avoid drafts. /Provide adequate ventilation of the incubator and Check for openings of incubator rota  vents.
Pull rum disease or other salmonellae's Use eggs from disease-free sources. Have your representative’s blood-test the breeder flock.
Improper nutrition of breeders Provide a well-balanced nutritional diet to breeders.

Symptom  4:- Chicks fully formed, but dead without pepping.   

Problem Cause Corrective Measures
Low Average Humidity in Incubator, too low or too high humidity at transfer time in the Hatcher Maintain proper humidity levels through out incubation & hatching cycle.

Symptom  5:- Pipped eggs, but died without hatching.

Problem Cause Corrective Measures
Low average humidity. Maintain proper humidity levels through out incubation & hatching cycle.
Inadequate ventilation or excessive fumigation during course of hatch. Provide adequate ventilated room & proper openings of rota vents of the machine.
Low average. Maintain proper temperature throughout incubating & hatching cycle.

Symptom  6:- Early hatching (may have bloody navels).

Problem Cause Corrective Measures
High incubation temperatures. Follow recommended incubation temperatures. Check equipment for proper function. Guard against electrical surges or high incubator room temperatures.
Improper egg storage. Store eggs at 50-60 degrees F. and 60% R.H. Turn at least 3 times daily.

Symptom  7:-  Late hatching or not hatching uniformly.

Problem Cause Corrective Measures
Low incubation temperatures. Follow recommended incubation temperatures.
Old or improperly stored eggs. Gather eggs frequently, cool immediately and store eggs properly. Do not store longer than 7 days.

Symptom  8:-  Sticky embryos (embryos may be smeared with egg contents).

Problem Cause Corrective Measures
High average incubation humidity. Follow recommended incubation humidity. Maintain proper humidity levels through out incubation & hatching cycle.
Low incubation temperature. Follow recommended temperature settings.
Lethal genes. Avoid cross breeding. May need to secure different breeding stock.
Inadequate ventilation excessive fumigation  during course of hatch. Provide adequate ventilated room & proper openings of rota vents of machine. Follow recommended instructions regarding fumigation.

Symptom  9:-  Embryos sticking or adhering to shell.

Problem Cause Corrective Measures
Low incubation humidity (especially during hatching). Increase incubation humidity by increasing water evaporation. Embryos dried too much.
Excessive ventilation rate. Reduce ventilation rate but maintain minimum air exchange to prevent suffocation of embryos.

Symptom  10:-  Crippled and malformed chicks.

Problem Cause Corrective Measures
Improper incubation temperatures, usually too high. (Missing eye). Follow recommended incubation temperatures.
Improper temperature. This can also be caused by setting too few eggs per tray permitting too much freedom of movement to chicks.  (Crooked Toes) Maintain proper temperature levels through out incubating and hatching cycle. Do not set too few eggs per tray.
Heredity (Cross Beak) Proper culling and breeding practices will reduce problems.
Hatching trays which are too smooth. Almost never encountered in Dayal Incubators (Spraddle Legs) Use crinoline cloth on hatching trays.
Improper nutrition of breeders. (Wry Neck) Provide a well-balanced nutritional diet to breeders.

Symptom  11:-  Abnormal, weak, or small chicks.

Problem Cause Corrective Measures
High incubation or hatching temperatures. Follow recommended incubation temperatures.
Small eggs hatch small chicks. Set only standard or large sized eggs.
Insufficient incubation humidity. Maintain recommended humidity for species of bird incubated.
Improper ventilation in Hatcher unit. Increase ventilation rate, but avoid drafts.
Diseased or poorly conditioned breeder flock. Use eggs from disease-free sources only. Have NPIP representative’s blood-test the breeder flock.
Improper nutrition of breeders. Provide a well-balanced nutritional diet to breeders (especially vitamin levels).
Excessive fumigation in Hatcher. Fumigate using proper procedures.

Symptom  12:-  Chicks with labored breathing.

Problem Cause Corrective Measures
Excessive use of fumigant. Follow recommended fumigation procedures.
Respiratory diseases. Check disease status of breeder flock. Conduct a thorough cleanup and disinfection of incubator and hatching facilities.

Symptom  13:-  Large, soft-bodied mushy chicks; dead on trays; bad odor.

Problem Cause Corrective Measures
Low average incubation temperature. Follow recommended incubation temperatures. Increase ventilation rate in incubator and/or room, but avoid drafts.
Poor ventilation. Provide adequate ventilation of incubating room and maintain proper openings of the incubator & Hatcher rota vents.
Navel infection (Omphalitis). Clean and disinfect incubator and hatching units between settings of eggs. Maintain dry hatching trays. Properly store and fumigate eggs.

Symptom  14:-  Rough or unhealed navels.

Problem Cause Corrective Measures
High temperature or wide temperature variation. Maintain proper temperature levels throughout  incubation & hatching cycle.
High hatching humidity. Use less humidity for first 24 to 36 hours after transfer.
Navel infection (Omphalitis). Clean and disinfect incubator and hatching units between settings of eggs. Maintain dry hatching trays. Properly store and fumigate eggs.

Symptom  15:-  Gasping chicks.

Problem Cause Corrective Measures
Excessive fumigation in the Carry out approved disease control practice. See instruction on fumigation during the course of hatching procedure.
Respiratory diseases as Bronchitis or Newcastle Hatcher. carry out approved disease control practice.

Symptom  16:-  Delayed hatch; eggs do not start to pip until 21st day or later.

Problem Cause Corrective Measures
Average temperature too low. Maintain correct temperature throughout incubation & Hatching cycle.
Eggs held to long import gathering holding of eggs. Try not to hold eggs more than 3 days.

Symptom  17:-  Draggy hatch, some chicks early.

Problem Cause Corrective Measures
Improper gathering & holding of eggs. Eggs must be gathered frequently, cooled quickly and held at proper temperatures and humidity before setting.

Symptom  18:-  Short down on chicks.

Problem Cause Corrective Measures
High incubation temperatures. Follow recommended incubation temperatures.
Low incubation humidity. Follow suggestions to correct insufficient humidity.
Excessive ventilation at hatching time. Reduce openings of Hatcher rota vents. Restrict opening of top ventilation. Do not but maintain adequate air exchange.
Holding chicks in Hatcher too long after hatching. Remove all chicks as soon as fluffy but within 24 hours after hatching.

Symptom  19:-  Excessive yellow coloring of down.

Problem Cause Corrective Measures
Improper and excessive fumigation in Hatcher unit. Follow recommended fumigation procedures.
   

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