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dead ducklings

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 

Hi - I have a duck who is great at getting broody and sitting, but she throws her eggs out one by one until there is only one left - that hatches and then we find the duckling dead every time....before it's even dried off :-( This has been happening for 2 years - I was hoping she'd get better at it as she got older, but she hasn't. I pinched half her eggs this time and incubated them - aiming to give them back the day after they hatched so they're a bit stronger and more able wriggle etc....so the Mum would realise they were ducklings...? So I have 2 newly hatched ducklings and another cracking the egg open as we speak - mum has 3 eggs under her, one of which was starting to crack this morning first thing. I have been procrastinating all day - I really don't want to give the ducklings to the mum and then have her attack them :-( We can look after them ourselves...but then the 'mum' seems to really want to be a mum!! Does anyone please have any opinions/advice....?

post #2 of 4

I'm new to ducks and never had a broody duck but... Maybe you could try giving her the ducklings during a time when you can sit and watch her for a long time. If she goes after them, take them away and raise yourself. If she accepts them let her raise them. My guess is that some ducks just aren't cut out to be moms even if they are good at sitting on the eggs.

 

Good luck!


Edited by lomine - 4/7/16 at 10:11am
post #3 of 4
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alpops View Post
 

Hi - I have a duck who is great at getting broody and sitting, but she throws her eggs out one by one until there is only one left - that hatches and then we find the duckling dead every time....before it's even dried off :-( This has been happening for 2 years - I was hoping she'd get better at it as she got older, but she hasn't. I pinched half her eggs this time and incubated them - aiming to give them back the day after they hatched so they're a bit stronger and more able wriggle etc....so the Mum would realise they were ducklings...? So I have 2 newly hatched ducklings and another cracking the egg open as we speak - mum has 3 eggs under her, one of which was starting to crack this morning first thing. I have been procrastinating all day - I really don't want to give the ducklings to the mum and then have her attack them :-( We can look after them ourselves...but then the 'mum' seems to really want to be a mum!! Does anyone please have any opinions/advice....?

I really doubt she'll take them she will not see them as hers.  You'd be better off just brooding them yourself. I have only had one Muscovy do this and only one time we managed to save one of the ducklings. Next year she was first to go broody I was prepared to take ducklings away as they hatched even if it meant staying in her stall while they hatched.  but this time she was great with them, you just never know. Muscovy's are usually great broodies and mommies but sometimes there will be one that just isn't so good at either or.

 Western N.C ~ 17 chickens= EE's, Game, variety of bantams,1Light Brahma, 2 Black Australorps . 5 Muscovy ducks, 8 Indian Runners and 2 Buff Orpington Ducks, 1 Embden gander,1 Toulouse goose , 3 mini Dachshunds, 2 mixed breed, pond goldfish,  and a wonderful Husband who makes it all possible..

 

The Son of God became a man to enable men to become sons of God ~C.S.Lewis~

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 Western N.C ~ 17 chickens= EE's, Game, variety of bantams,1Light Brahma, 2 Black Australorps . 5 Muscovy ducks, 8 Indian Runners and 2 Buff Orpington Ducks, 1 Embden gander,1 Toulouse goose , 3 mini Dachshunds, 2 mixed breed, pond goldfish,  and a wonderful Husband who makes it all possible..

 

The Son of God became a man to enable men to become sons of God ~C.S.Lewis~

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post #4 of 4
Thread Starter 

Hi - thank you both for the replies! My worry is that if she doesn't take them then by the time I reach in to take them back she'll have already killed them - do you know if they try to shoo them away for a bit first or just go into attack mode? We have 2 hatched now and one more on the way so if I put them in at all I was going to do them all together tomorrow or the next day (depending on when number 3 hatches and dries off...). We have been trying for ducklings for 2 years now so we would all be gutted if these didn't make it!!! We also have the drake rummaging around under her in the nest and pecking her bum as if to try and get her up, so might separate him off!!! (it has definately been the female that has squashed the previous ones though as he's been separated off the last few times she's gone broody...)

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