An Incubate debate

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by ravnis, Feb 27, 2011.

  1. ravnis

    ravnis New Egg

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    Feb 27, 2011
    I have a debate going on about incubation.

    My ducks have been laying eggs for several weeks now. They are a mix buff orphington and muscovy. They lay all over the yard instead of in the coop I built for them, except one started laying in the hay of a lean two I built for them.
    I have 4 buffs laying and a female muscovy. I had thought the one laying the nest was my muscovy female, but had never seen them set. I gathered the other eggs and left the nest alone. For 17 days I had been hoping to see the scovy start setting, but did not. I kept counting the eggs and it kept increasing up until 20 eggs were in the nest( I had added 3 that had been strewn on the yard to the nest.) Friday, found it was one of the buffs sitting, It had become cold that night (has been in the 70s for last few weeks with temps in the 50-60s at night) when temps came up to the 60s again she got off the nest. I put more hay by the nest and she covered her eggs with the hay. THe eggs are being turned to as they are moved.

    I have never incubated before, but was given a wooden incubator that I just had to fix as the heating element had been broken when it got caught in the auto turner when bolts had evidently become loose. I reattached the heating element and tightened the bolts and the turner is tracking well now. It is now holding temps between 99.5-100F and the thermometer in the water pan is reading 86 after running 12 hours.

    My question is since buffs aren't supposed to be good brooders, should I leave them out there and see what happens or try to incubate them, age of eggs will vary as they basically run from 2day old to almost 3 weeks old.
     
  2. DuckLover179

    DuckLover179 Waddles & Puddles

    Nov 28, 2010
    California
    I'm not an expert on incubation, but here's what I would do:

    See if the buff is sitting on them alot (If she is, then you could probably leave them with her)
    If not, then I would put them in the incubater.

    Again, I'm not an expert so you might want to see what other people say. I just putting in my say. But if she seems like a good mother, then I would say she can keep the eggs with her.
     
  3. ravnis

    ravnis New Egg

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    Feb 27, 2011
    Thanks for the response. I have not seen her sit on the eggs at all since and this is what has me worried.
     
  4. DuckLover179

    DuckLover179 Waddles & Puddles

    Nov 28, 2010
    California
    Quote:Then I would defiantly put them in the incubater. [​IMG]
     
  5. KansasKid

    KansasKid Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 7, 2010
    South East Kansas
    i'm confused, you said at the beginning your ducks are a mix of muscovy and buff? is that all of them or just offspring of your parent ducks whose eggs you want to incubate?
     
  6. ravnis

    ravnis New Egg

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    Feb 27, 2011
    Quote:The eggs are most likely buff eggs, I have 3 mucscovy males and 1 female muscovy. I have 4 buff males and 5 buff females. I got these ducks as duckling last august.
     
  7. lobo307

    lobo307 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 21, 2011
    i would put them in the incubator, you have more control over the environment and will get a much better hatch rate. if you want to give her a chance, try to figure out the oldest eggs and put them in the bator leaving 4 or 5 eggs will keep her returning to the nest and possably start setting. im in no way an expert, i could be completly wrong. that is just what i would do.
     
  8. KansasKid

    KansasKid Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 7, 2010
    South East Kansas
    Ok i think i got you now. The birds aren't a cross of the two. But the eggs are- I say go ahead and incubate, and Good Luck! [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2011
  9. ravnis

    ravnis New Egg

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    Feb 27, 2011
    after the wonderful advice i had read on this forum and received, I put the eggs in the incubator on February 27. I candled them today, and now the shells are opaque. I had been gone for two days out of town , but my weather channel thermometer states the no major fluctuation in temperature or humidity had occurred. What surprises me is that before I left I candled the eggs and they had visible movement and i could make out a head moving. I come back two days later and the air sack does not move when I move the egg and I can't make out anything. I looked at the picture of candling on metzer farms page and they look almost like day 24 or day 25, but they have only been in the incubator 19 days.

    I had been leaving them in the nest and had seen a duck sitting on them but infrequently. So being concerned I moved them to the incubator. Is it possible that they could be farther along even if the mama duck was leaving the nest for hours at a time? This is my first attempt at a hatch with eggs from birds I got as ducklings in July 2010.

    Im wondering also if I should go ahead and stop the turner and raise the humidity and put them in lockdown and put them on the bottom shelf? Is it normal for the air sac to stop moving on day 23+ or did I just lose my hatch? All eggs seem to be the same.

    Sorry If asking stupid questions, but try to do the best I can for creatures in my care.

    Btw, my buff laid more eggs in our rosebush since she knew I couldnt easily get to her eggs and is sitting on them and becomes aggressive if approached by other ducks. I let her have her eggs and will see what she does with these.
     
  10. The Duck ABC's

    The Duck ABC's Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 5, 2011
    I would also move them into the incubator. One piece of advise. Candle weekly! Especially since you have such a wide range in egg age. The 3 week old ones are possible dead at this point and they will grow bacteria fast and can explode during incubation. Candling will help you determines the bad ones. I use a very bright led flash light, since hot lamps are not a good thing. Anyway you should see blood vessel after 5 days. If you don't see any in 5 days toss them. That way you have weeded out infertile and dead eggs before they become an exploding issue.
     

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