Friday, April 27, 2012

Hatching emus

Jim and I are hatching emu eggs in our incubator this year. We use these cabinet style incubators.

It's been over the allotted 56 days for the hatching to begin and we've have been watching...  watching...  watching for the hatch to arrive.

Tonight Jim called me into the basement to see that one of the eggs finally had a crack in it. As we watched, the small break in the egg began to lift up the egg shell, like a manhole in a city street. Again and again it rose, until Jim finally took the piece of egg shell away.

In an emu egg, under it's thick shell is a white membrane. We watched as that membrane (sort of like a little curtain) moved and wiggled.

We have read that if you whistle to the egg, it may whistle back. I've whistled on and off every day, but have heard nothing.
As we stood there watching, the little fella whistled. Jim and I, in wide eyed wonder, looked at each other in delight. "Oh my gosh, this is like giving birth watching the baby come!" I said. (The funny part is our middle daughter was born on this day 24 years ago).

The first whistle is me, then the baby quietly answers with a whistle

Jim and I watched, took a picture, a video and finally, reluctantly shut the incubator door.


  1. My chicks were due to hatch, on day 21 the incubator got unplugged for awhile, the temp dropped to 74 degrees. did all my chicks dye or should I wait a couple days to see if they will hatch.

    1. I would keep the incubator going until the hatch date, at least. We would let our incubator at least an extra week to 10 days...