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Fertile and Infertile Eggs

Discussion in 'Tortoise Breeding' started by Yvonne G, Aug 7, 2016.

  1. Yvonne G

    Yvonne G Old Timer TFO Admin 5 Year Member Platinum Supporter

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    Since I have a good example of each in my incubator right now I thought I'd post it so you can see the difference. Hopefully the picture shows it good enough.

    The eggs on the lower left are fertile. Notice how white they are. When we talk about "chalking" this is what we're talking about.

    The eggs on the upper right are sort of translucent and not white. These are not fertile and haven't chalked.

    eggs 8-7-16.jpg
  2. GeneR

    GeneR New Member

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    Thanks. My Hermann's recently laid a clutch for the first time, and seeing the comparison very much helps.
  3. wellington

    wellington Well-Known Member Moderator 5 Year Member

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    Yvonne, the ones that haven't chalked. Is there still a chance they will and that's why people will still hang on to them for a time?
  4. Yvonne G

    Yvonne G Old Timer TFO Admin 5 Year Member Platinum Supporter

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    No, I doubt they're any good. But there's always hope. I hate to toss eggs.
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  5. ZEROPILOT

    ZEROPILOT Well-Known Member TFO Supporter Platinum Supporter

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    I've had all duds so far.
    I kept most of them until they exploded like stink bombs.
    Thanks for the photo.
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  6. Eric Phillips

    Eric Phillips Well-Known Member

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    Has anyone ever had at times where 1 egg or so is fertile and the rest are infertile in a clutch? 1 good egg out of a bunch of bad ones?
  7. wellington

    wellington Well-Known Member Moderator 5 Year Member

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    I believe that's pretty much what I had. Out of much over 20 eggs last year. I had one hatch. One split open with what looked like a fully developed leopard inside, but was dead and all the rest went bad. I was never able to seen veins or anything moving or looking like at baby inside any of them, even the one that did hatch. The one that did hatch is doing great and will be a year in November. Oh, I have no idea if they all started out fertile and went bad, or some clutches fertile and other ss not.
    It was 4 different clutches. Approx 33 eggs total I think.
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  8. Will

    Will Well-Known Member

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    Making an egg is an expensive thing for a turtle or tortoise to do, lots of nutrients get used up, and much risk is taken when a female lays eggs. The few times I have found statistics for wild nests, without regard to hatch rate, most eggs are fertile when laid.

    I have an argumentative (debate not cattiness) that is speculative. . .

    I think at least some of the takeaway could be that infertile eggs are a result of good husbandry, in that the female had an abundance of resources. I think males, when held in close proximity to females are not very thrifty with their resources, so male fertility (effective, that is) goes down while females' go up with the high quality food we offer in over abundance.

    Think about that!
  9. Yvonne G

    Yvonne G Old Timer TFO Admin 5 Year Member Platinum Supporter

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    That just about explains most of my Manouria luck. I was able to get 1, 2 and sometimes 3 hatchlings out of over 20 eggs each sitting, and the eggs that didn't hatch were empty upon opening.

    To add to what Will just said, he recently hatched almost all of the eggs laid this past spring by one female from the same group that used to live here. Besides climate, the main difference was that the male had been separated from the females for quite a while.
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  10. seanang168

    seanang168 Active Member 5 Year Member

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    14 May 2017, my star tortoise laid an egg. But it is not the chalky type indicated up here. More like a bit pinkish if you candle it. So highly chance is that it is not fertile? My star has been laying eggs since 2008 but I never have any success
  11. seanang168

    seanang168 Active Member 5 Year Member

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    Ok today 7 Jul 2017, my star tortoise just laid another egg. But got a faint hairline crack. Keeping my fingers crossed
  12. mike taylor

    mike taylor Well-Known Member

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    Yes ! My red foot dropped a load of eggs and I only got one baby .
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  13. wellington

    wellington Well-Known Member Moderator 5 Year Member

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    That happened to me starting two years ago with my leopard. Bunch of eggs. One hatched, two others baby died inside eggs, one appeared fully developed the other almost. All the other eggs, around 20 or so nothing.
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  14. Eric Phillips

    Eric Phillips Well-Known Member

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    ImageUploadedByTortoise Forum1499461312.829844.jpg

    Here's a pic of some box turtle eggs fertile and infertile...

    The top two the embryos never developed....the next 2 were chalking when this pic was taken(you can see the band on the egg on the left)...the next 2 were laid above ground from the rest of this clutch and they were infertile....the bottom one chalked. So 3 out of 7 appears to be good at 34 days while the other 4 either collapsed or never chalked and were full of yolk.
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