Yes, but it is contengent on the nutriotioin of the mother duck. If she was niacin def. she could not pass any on to the egg yollk, which is the food and life support system of the embryo. He can only get what she gave him.
This is why most people (self included - I have a duck egg business) are diligent about nutrition. I let them have purchased suplimented foods, plus also kitchen scraps and free range time - since insects are excellent sources of trace nutrients - and snales an excellent form of shell calcium.
I'm awefully sorry about your babies.
Until recently I was a sworn hands off hatcher, but it doesn't work with shipped eggs. I've had the most terrable shrink wrap. I talked to one of my biology professors, and in her opinion, shipped eggs that go in flight suffer from hairline cracks and miniscule cracks to their shells. This can result in uneven moisture loss, and open the door for stiffened dessicated membrane. Now, I'm not sure thats the answer yet, but I can tell you that all my duck eggs that I gave my kids school to hatch came out w/o any help, and no shrink wrap. I'm a full service hatcher every week now, while I'm hatching rare breeds from shipped eggs.