I had meant to blog earlier about candling our eggs ... however as often happens life seems to have got in the way (and loss of it, poor Emily.) Thanks to all for the lovely comments BTW on my last post.
It's not as if we weren't candling, in fact I was so impatient there was no way I could wait a week so we had a look on day 4! and day 6 .... and day 8 ... and day 12.... and tonight -day 14 ! Apparently it doesn't harm the eggs, they don't spend long enough out of the incubator to lose heat so lots of people (impatient ones like me!) candle them often as the development is pretty amazing.
There is a lot of info on the internet about candling, so I won't go into it too much here, but basically it involves shining a light through the egg to see whats going on inside. It needs to be done in a fairly dark room, with a torch or lamp that can concentrate the light through the egg -not around it. We used a normal torch and it worked fine.
Unfortunately I haven't got any photos as they wouldn't work well, but even at day 4 we could see a dark mass inside (on non-fertile eggs there is just light). We could even see the eye which is one of the first things to develop. At day 4, it seemed there was maybe 10 out of the 12 developing, though some were more obvious than others. From day 6 onwards, there has been 8 developing out of the 12, which is a pretty good rate. Wyandottes are rose-combed which lowers the fertility rate (strange but true) so I wasn't expecting all of them to work, but hopefully these 8 will make it to the end.
Tonight (day 14) there is not much left to see. The chick has grown into most of the egg, so its very dark, with just a small space left to grow into, and the bigger end of the egg has an air sac which lights up really well.
As I mentioned in my original post I have mix of silver-laced (3 left), gold-laced (1 left) and blue-laced-golds (4 left). BLG parents have chicks of BLG's, gold laced, and splash (which is gold/white with blue) so I'm very interested in what is going to come out!
There is still another week to go, fingers crossed that the remaining 8 will all make their way out of those shells, and that they will all be hens!