Beside candling, how else can I tell if my duck's eggs are fertilized?

jollibee

Hatching
7 Years
Apr 26, 2012
3
1
7
I have 2 drakes and 1 duck. Indian Runners. I do see the drakes try to mate with her, but I'm wondering if they might be "missing the target". She just started laying this month, last week to be exact. They were all hatched in the 1st week of May this year 2012. I candled the eggs before I put them in the refrigerator, didn't see any "veins" so assumed it was ok to use as food. I'd like to try and hatch some of them, but don't know how else to tell. During the day I don't see her keeping those eggs warm....I need to hear from you BYC!
jumpy.gif
We want some little ducklings running around
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Bleenie

Wyan-DO's
10 Years
Jul 14, 2009
5,014
91
268
The Beautiful Pacific NW ,WA
Give her 3 more weeks oflaying before you collect any eggs for hatching. the first eggs usually aren't fertile anyway. An egg does not immediately have veins inside. It can takeup to 3 days for veins to start showing and that's only if the hen has been brooding the egg(or it's been incubated) the whole 3 days.

If you want to check if they're fertilized,crack open an egg into a bowl and look on the yolk, kind of off to the side for a small, milky-ish, bullseye-looking spot. if it has that spot it's fertilized, that's the sperm. Do Not mistake the sperm for the white lumpy thing that keeps the yolk & albumen(egg white) attached, all eggs have that.

a hen won't sit on eggs consistiently until she decides she wants to go broody. usually when they go broody you will notice them stomping around the yard peeping or just being generally witchy. they usually(but not always) will pull some of their belly feathers out and make a nest with them.

I would just let the birds get used to all this new laying & breeding business. Readup on incubating duck eggs before you try it... it's never fun when you spend 28 days incubating eggs and no babies hatch.

ETA: you might consider rehoming one of your drakes(or trading for a hen) for the sake of the hen. it's always better to have more hens that drakes... when there's more boys the hens tend to get overbred.
 
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