Tuesday, July 26, 2011

My attempts at "Candling"

Unfortunately, we're down to five eggs. My black copper marans egg got stepped on and broken. Lucy is in the favored box (read: only nesting box that really counts), so the other chickens keep trying to step over her to lay. Never mind there's five other perfectly good boxes. We went camping for a couple days, and my neighbor chickensat for us. While gone, my neighbor was getting 1-2 eggs a day in the other boxes, and figured they weren't laying much because of the heat. Then, Sunday morning, she realized there was a broken egg under Lucy, so she went to clean it up. She found a DOZEN eggs there that weren't supposed to be hatching! Poor hen was trying to sit on 17 eggs.

I've never really been known much for my patience. When I heard that it's possible to "candle" an egg, I was all over that.

I've been trying to rig something to candle the eggs, but I don't think I've been entirely successful. I don't think the light is quite bright enough. The only egg that I feel like I'm getting much luck with is the white egg.

This is what I saw yesterday, which would be around day 7:

That definitely looks like more than just a plain, unfertilized egg. However, I don't see any veining, and I don't see any independent movement, like I've seen some of on youtube.

Today, after finding two different chickens sitting on poor Lucy, I decided to try and separate the henhouse so that she'll be left in peace. I used our chicken wire/fabric, and just tacked it up. Lucy still has access to food and water, but she can't get out of the coop. She hasn't wanted to, so I only feel a little guilty about that. On the plus side, so far, no other chickens have gotten in.

When I was trying to rig it up, Blondie kept trying to sneak past me into the nesting box so she could lay. She was such a pain that it was like having a 2 year old out there "helping" me. I finally got the net up enough to where she couldn't go in, and she finally gave in and went to a different box and laid.

I have the highest hopes for eggs 1 (white) and 4 (green). #2 is so dark I can't see inside. I think I can see a slight shadow in 2 and 4. 5 seems quite porous to me, and I can't see any air sac, so I'm pretty sure it's a dud. However, I'd hate to crack it open and discover I'm wrong, so I'm trying to sit tight.

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