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#103456 - 04/21/12 07:57 AM Check Air Cells in Shipped Eggs Before Incubation?
Tajsj Offline
Bantam

Registered: 04/06/04
Posts: 53
Loc: Alabama
First time incubating shipped eggs. Have been reading about "loose air cells", "bubbles" and all manner of concerns I've never thought about before. For the record..I have incubated 4-500 eggs already this year but they have been my own eggs. I just save them up for a week and put them in the incubator. I use the dry incubation method and get about a 90% hatch using 2 redwood style incubators. No auto turners, eggs lay flat.

My very expensive shipped eggs have been setting, large end up, for around 48 hours. I think I really need to get them into the incubator today. When I candle I can't see any air sac..loose or otherwise. I've really never worried about that before so I may be missing something. I've also read that upright incubation is in order for shipped eggs. Never tried that before either. Any advice would be appreciated. I have 24 Orp. eggs and they were only shipped approx. 300 miles. But I've got to get them going today.
_________________________
T. W.

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#103457 - 04/21/12 08:49 AM Re: Check Air Cells in Shipped Eggs Before Incubation? [Re: Tajsj]
Wieslaw Offline
Moderator
Classroom Professor

Registered: 09/18/09
Posts: 3428
Loc: Denmark
Never heard about loose air cells. Some hens lay naturally eggs with air chambers on the side instead of on the top, but I honestly cannot imagine how air chambers can be loose. And even if they were, what could you possibly do about it? The only thing I do (apart from letting them lie still for 24 hours) is to wash them with antiviral agent. I had various results from shipped eggs, from 21 out of 36, down to 14 out of 48(chicks dying in the last week of incubation). No egg in nature is hatched standing up on the sharp end.

PS. When I drove myself in the car throughout the half of Denmark, there was no difference in hatching numbers from my own eggs. So postal workers probably play football with the parcels. Additionally, you never know what is the real percentage of fertilized eggs with the person who sends them.

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#103460 - 04/21/12 03:33 PM Re: Check Air Cells in Shipped Eggs Before Incubation? [Re: Wieslaw]
nzchicke Offline
Bantam

Registered: 12/24/10
Posts: 72
Loc: South Island NZ
I have had eggs that have been posted very roughly, I found they were easy to spot the 'travelling air sac', often you could feel the worst ones too when you moved the egg. Sorry I do not have advice on it, just some of mine I expected not to make it still did. the more careful the better I say.

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#103468 - 04/22/12 03:47 PM Re: Check Air Cells in Shipped Eggs Before Incubation? [Re: nzchicke]
Wieslaw Offline
Moderator
Classroom Professor

Registered: 09/18/09
Posts: 3428
Loc: Denmark
I have been shaking a freshly laid egg for many minutes and found it impossible to make the air sack travelling. I have borrowed a picture of an egg from this site:

http://urbanext.illinois.edu/eggs/res16-egg.html



As you can see the air sack is very small when fresh and is placed between 2 very strong membranes, which are strong enough to go through a hens vent without being damaged. They are the last thing that can be damaged in an egg. To make the air sack travel it would be necessary to separate the two membranes, which is impossible to do without damaging the egg itself. The things that can be damage first are the two chalazas that keep the yolk centrally in the thick albumen and the next problem would be the damage to the yolk itself. The air sack is of the least concern in this game.It will stay where it is. When you use a level to check if something is built correctly , do you feel the air buble moving ? You don't. You've probably heard somebody confused a rotten egg with a fresh egg.


Edited by Wieslaw (04/22/12 03:53 PM)

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#103472 - 04/23/12 08:53 PM Re: Check Air Cells in Shipped Eggs Before Incubation? [Re: Wieslaw]
Tajsj Offline
Bantam

Registered: 04/06/04
Posts: 53
Loc: Alabama
I agree with you Wieslaw. I had never heard of it either. What started my investigation was a statement made to me by the seller of these expensive eggs (a most reputable breeder). I was asking him if I needed to do anything special with the shipped eggs upon receipt. He stated that I just needed to let them settle, big end up, for 24 hours before incubating...because "if you were to candle these eggs as soon as they arrive those air sacs could be all over the place"...his words, not mine. I did candle them and saw nothing unusual. Now, the 24 hour "settling period" was something I had heard before and it makes perfect sense (mostly for temp. acclimation) but the mystical traveling air sac/cell was a new one to me and I haven't seen one yet. Maybe I misunderstood what he was talking about. Though other sites have much to say on the subject...at least enough to make you think it is a common occurrence with shipped eggs. Well I suppose, technically speaking, the air sacs did "travel"...about 350 miles.
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T. W.

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#103478 - 04/24/12 01:57 AM Re: Check Air Cells in Shipped Eggs Before Incubation? [Re: Tajsj]
Caladenia Offline
Chicken

Registered: 02/12/07
Posts: 146
Loc: Australia
i have seen ruptured air sacs on candling from shipped eggs. it's quite noticeable, so if you can't see it you mustn't have it. as well as rough handling other facctors such as temperature (higher) and humidity play into the situation.

its much worse if the eggs have travelled by air, as the lack of stabilised air pressure in the aircraft hold will allow rupturing of the membrane.

were your shipped eggs subjected to air travel? simple physics of expanding air explains how the membranes can be ruptured/damaged.

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#103479 - 04/24/12 06:15 AM Re: Check Air Cells in Shipped Eggs Before Incubation? [Re: Caladenia]
Wieslaw Offline
Moderator
Classroom Professor

Registered: 09/18/09
Posts: 3428
Loc: Denmark
My shipped eggs were subjected to air travel (twice). No ruptured air sacs. Perhaps pilots in Australia fly higher than here. In case of high altitudes the air in the air sack would not expand, au contraire. If anything, it should be sucked out of the eggs. Can you(or anybody else) make a picture of ruptured air sack ?

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#103480 - 04/24/12 06:18 AM Re: Check Air Cells in Shipped Eggs Before Incubation? [Re: Caladenia]
Tajsj Offline
Bantam

Registered: 04/06/04
Posts: 53
Loc: Alabama
Caladenia-Not sure if they traveled by air. I would think they did not. Did you attempt to incubate the eggs with ruptured air sacs? If so, what results?
Can anyone provide a picture of candled egg with ruptured/out of location/bubbled airsac? Or at least a link to picture?
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T. W.

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#103492 - 04/25/12 12:30 AM Re: Check Air Cells in Shipped Eggs Before Incubation? [Re: Tajsj]
Caladenia Offline
Chicken

Registered: 02/12/07
Posts: 146
Loc: Australia
i did attempt to incubate the eggs with the ruptured sacs, they had travelled a long way and it was worth a go, but to no avail.

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#103493 - 04/25/12 12:38 AM Re: Check Air Cells in Shipped Eggs Before Incubation? [Re: Caladenia]
Caladenia Offline
Chicken

Registered: 02/12/07
Posts: 146
Loc: Australia
found this image on backyard chickens.



http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/471229/can-someone-show-me-a-detached-or-ruptured-air-sac

in this case the poster said the egg was developing at that stage.

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#103494 - 04/25/12 12:40 AM Re: Check Air Cells in Shipped Eggs Before Incubation? [Re: Caladenia]
Caladenia Offline
Chicken

Registered: 02/12/07
Posts: 146
Loc: Australia


Edited by Caladenia (04/25/12 12:41 AM)

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#103496 - 04/25/12 01:12 AM Re: Check Air Cells in Shipped Eggs Before Incubation? [Re: Caladenia]
Wieslaw Offline
Moderator
Classroom Professor

Registered: 09/18/09
Posts: 3428
Loc: Denmark
My wife has boiled some eggs from my youngsters.Here is a selection



She said that it actually happens often and was very suprised that it is 'not normal'.Just because the air sack is not on the dull end, does not mean it is travelling and the sack is ruptured. I have not observed any significant hatching problems caused by the initial position of the air sack. The air sack grows as the chick develops and by the end of the incubation it occupies nearly the half of the egg. I have also repeatedly seen chicks coming out of the eggs from the side opposite to where the air sack is placed.

Comment to the article from the link above: I always wash dirty eggs. I have carried out several experiments on my own,described in other threads. Even eggs washed with an ordinary handsoap hatched out perfectly for me.

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#103598 - 04/27/12 10:43 PM Re: Check Air Cells in Shipped Eggs Before Incubation? [Re: Wieslaw]
Caladenia Offline
Chicken

Registered: 02/12/07
Posts: 146
Loc: Australia
There is plenty of anecdotal evidence of eggs being damaged in transit.

how scientific is it to shake the eggs? this doesn't necessarily imitate the vibrations placed on eggs during transport?

while i had it back to front with my initial post about expanding, the eggs contract and expand depending on how many airtrips are necessary...............it contracts under the non pressurised situation as the aeroplane gains altitude, but EXPANDS again as it comes down. this can be enough to damage an egg

i have been lucky and received non damaged air freighted eggs and damaged air freighted eggs (that bit was not lucky lol) and you can clearly see the difference inthe internal structure of the eggs upon candling. sometimes the air sac disapppears altogether.

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#103611 - 04/28/12 11:27 AM Re: Check Air Cells in Shipped Eggs Before Incubation? [Re: Caladenia]
CJR Online   content
Coop Master

Registered: 07/16/02
Posts: 8447
Loc: Montana
My birds and their eggs are valuable to me. Bantam eggs, as far as I can learn from those who purchase eggs that are shipped, MOST often, hatch poorly or not at all, The eggs my hens produce, are not to be tossed to the Postal Service (who have been reliable handlers of Express Mail of my Bantams--old enough to assess their TYPE.) It takes a long time to package eggs safely for shipping! I do not ship eggs or chicks for any price!

Large Fowl eggs have a much better shipping success. There are more problems than air cell damage. There maybe changes due to varying Temperature, air pressure, dropping while handling, as well as unequal quality of the shells, contents of individual eggs. THe larger eggs with more firm- egg white- gives the chalazae a better length to hold the yolk in place and more gentle cushioning during shipment. Reputation of the breeder has little to do with success of the shipped eggs--unless you know something that isn't general knowledge about the breeders business management??? With FRESH eggs,that air cell is pretty small, difficult to see, and not as easily affected as an egg, even a week old.
Purchasing hatching eggs is always a risk that we will take to obtain special "hopes". But no one truly knows what will hatch from that egg!! Expectations, yes--sure thing--????? CJR


Edited by CJR (04/28/12 11:33 AM)

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#103755 - 05/15/12 03:51 PM Re: Check Air Cells in Shipped Eggs Before Incubation? [Re: CJR]
Uno Offline
Lord of the Fowl

Registered: 08/26/05
Posts: 1257
Loc: Canada
I've had eggs shipped by air, by bus and in someone's truck with them. The air and bus eggs arrived with air sacs that freely rolled around when you turned the egg. It did NOT stay in the fat end.

The eggs that travelled on the front seat of someone's truck covered about 500 miles and arrived in perfect shape with no wonky air cells.

Is it changes in humidity? Chages in temperature? Changes in air pressure? I have never been able to determine the problem. But when I get wobbly air sacs, I prop the eggs up in holders (egg cartons or paper collars) fat end UP, and rotate the fat end, tipping it left or right. But I do not lay them on their side like I normally do. My hatch rates have not been great. But amazingly one or two chicks do make it out! Bad air cells seem to come with travel in larger vehicles with more variables in temperature or air pressure (bus, plane). But seems if they travel in a truck where temp and air pressure are comfortable for a human, the eggs do fine too. It's a mystery!

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#103757 - 05/15/12 05:59 PM Re: Check Air Cells in Shipped Eggs Before Incubation? [Re: Uno]
CJR Online   content
Coop Master

Registered: 07/16/02
Posts: 8447
Loc: Montana
Car travel to and from long Airline flights with eggs lightly packaged, on my lap, and going through airport XRays, as many as 5 times, has not affected hatchability. I never note air sacs until candling after about 10 dsys incubation and again just before hatch date. Sometimes breech chicks can be seen a day or 2 before hatch and can be prepared to help (only if necessary). I do hen-hatches, so the suspense of incubator is eliminated. To be sure all hens are not dependable, but I keep daughters of dependable setters--and keep some hens just for setting!

Eggs should not be wrapped in plastic layers to ship,but rather, kleenex or "breathable" padding for the eggs. Bubble wrap is okay after enough breathable padding is next to the eggs. Special shipping cartons can be successful--I have never used them. I think that the larger the eggs, the safer it is to ship?? CJR

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#103768 - 05/16/12 06:42 PM Re: Check Air Cells in Shipped Eggs Before Incubation? [Re: CJR]
Tajsj Offline
Bantam

Registered: 04/06/04
Posts: 53
Loc: Alabama
Update: Hatched 19 healthy chicks out of 25 eggs. Incubated laying flat on their sides. 3 eggs were not fertile and had no signs of development. Not too shabby if I do say so myself. About the same results I usually get with my yard eggs.
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T. W.

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#103782 - 05/18/12 01:52 AM Re: Check Air Cells in Shipped Eggs Before Incubation? [Re: Tajsj]
Wieslaw Offline
Moderator
Classroom Professor

Registered: 09/18/09
Posts: 3428
Loc: Denmark
It's a very good result for shipped eggs. Congratulations.

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#103880 - 05/27/12 09:45 AM Re: Check Air Cells in Shipped Eggs Before Incubation? [Re: Wieslaw]
Wieslaw Offline
Moderator
Classroom Professor

Registered: 09/18/09
Posts: 3428
Loc: Denmark
I have made some photoes of my own egg which was 'shipped' in my pocket right from my coop to my basement (40 meters). The hen lays regularly her eggs with the air sack on the side of her eggs. From different angles, you should spot the developing chick inside:





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