Goldie left the nest with the three unhatched eggs in it yesterday and took her three chicks to the opposite end of the brooder. We took this as a sign that she knew the remaining eggs weren’t going to hatch, so we took them out. Not wanting to risk tossing a viable egg, and to try to better understand why they didn’t hatch, we decided to open them. Carefully. Outdoors.
Candling showed dark interiors in the eggs, but we heard no movement or tapping, and none had pipped…bad signs. As it turns out, the unhatched three were either quitters or had just not developed. We started opening one and saw goo, so we stopped before the inner membrane ruptured. Another cracked and yellowish liquid oozed out. The third was also full of liquid. Fortunately, none were “exploders”, since we had been holding them near our heads earlier to listen for tapping.
Only half of Goldie’s first clutch hatched, but she did a great job and surprised us with the three healthy chicks that did emerge. She’s been showing them where the food and water are, and tucking them back under her for safety and naps. It’s been fun hearing all the “conversation” between Goldie and her chicks as they make discoveries, too.
The chicks are well-hidden under Goldie’s feathers – see if you can spot a tiny one peeking out!