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Options to Candling

These ideas are not my ideas they have been taken from message boards or copied from mail I received. THANK YOU for the use of them Jan P !!

Antenna Method

This is realy neat and works great ! 

*Antenna on a mallard duck egg*

If you can imagine an upside down Y with 2 extra legs, that's sort of what the final product looks like.  I haven't done this with real small eggs, so am guessing at the measurements. You can experiment and make changes as necessary.  

Cut 4 pieces of fine wire such as florist wire each 1 1/2" long.  Cut another piece of wire about 3" long.  Twist the 4 together at one end.  Attach the longer piece to the 4 by twisting it on where the 4 are twisted together.  I secure this with a few drops of hot glue.  I then make 4 little balls about wooden matchhead size out of that "tacky" clay like stuff you use to put papers up with and stick them over the ends of the 4 "legs".  This keeps the antenna from sliding off.  For the top of the long wire, I attach something like one of those little styrofoam pot pouree beads or even dab it with white paint.  This will make it easier to see if it wiggles.  Spread the 4 little wires enough so that they will stand on the egg.  Put the egg on a level, flat, hard surface and let it roll till it rights itself, let the egg cool about 5 min, then set the antenna on top.  If the antenna makes the egg roll, you may have to cut some of the top wire off and/or make the legs shorter.   

Don't know if this works well for bantam eggs, but it's perfect for emu eggs and I have used it on duck goose and standard size chicken eggs.  It's best if you can do the antenna test when no one else is around and no appliances are running as it is so sensitive that it will wiggle if someone walks through the house (unless it's on a concrete slab).   

Tapping Method

With emu eggs, you can tell if the chick has internally pipped by tapping lightly on the shell with a metal rod.  There will be a dull thud until the chick internally pips at which time the tapping will give a very porcelain sound.  An old drill bit (large one) works best.  I never tried this with other eggs, but I bet it would work.  You could try it with duck eggs that can be candled and compare with the sound of one say at 24 or 25 days with one you can see is internally pipped.

Egg Temp Method

You can also tell by the temp in different places on the egg after it has been out of the incubator for 5 minutes.  Let the egg roll till it rights itself.  This puts the larger portion of the air sac at the top.  Then holding it horizontally in this position in one hand, curve the index finger of the other over the egg at the small end.  Then very slowly slide your finger towards the large end.  At one point, you will feel the temperature change from warm to cooler if the embryo is alive.  The larger the cool part is, the sooner the chick will hatch.  If you feel no cool part, the chick is probably ready to externally pip.  

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San Diego, Ca.