Brooder Picture


9 Years
Aug 28, 2010
Cedar Springs, Michigan
Will this work as my brooder for the 3-5 ducklings? Where the light is, I put a thermometer on the floor where babies would be sleeping and with a 250watt heat lamp(since it's away from water, and I tried the 100watt every day light bulb, but I got with the 250 watt heat lamp 98 degree floor reading, where as with the 100watt, I got only 92 degree floor reading. Anything else you all can think of I may need?? Here it is......
Ditch the 250W heat lamp. 98 degrees is to high. 92 degrees is all you need. I'm always aiming for 90-95 degrees. Put cardboard around the cage or your walls will be full of food and other matters. It also works as a draft prevention. Take the cardboard box out of the brooder, no need for it when you have cardboard around the cage. Food bowl is to large. Get something holding 4 ounces tops. Tiny mason jars are perfect. Put a cookie sheet lined with paper towels under the food and water dishes. Not sure what the square silver looking thing is.
Ok, will ditch the 250 and put back the 100 watt, the silver thing is the package of vitamins/electrolites to put in their water, I put it in the cage so I wouldn't lose it. Will also toss the box and find cardboard to put around it. Thanks!
Now, how do you teach the babies about mixing on their own electrolytes? Do you think they can read, unpack and mix?

Just kidding. Good thinking. Get a small mason jar to store it in once open. You know it goes a long way.
You may also want to put some plastic under the cage to catch anything splashing onto the cardboard and sliding down the sides onto the floor. You have nice floors and probably want to keep them that way. I think putting a plastic trash bag down should do the trick.
Ducks ween off heat really fast. I bet you don't need anything in 2.5 weeks. The house that it. You may have to add heat in the night once they are in the garage or basement. Mine get 65-70 degrees at night once they are 2.5 weeks old.
Now, how do you teach the babies about mixing on their own electrolytes? Do you think they can read, unpack and mix?

How is this now??

, what is this about putting marbles into the water dish??

God I really, really, hope preparing the brooder isn't jinxing things to go wrong from here on out!

Theroretically(sp) now that 2 have officially pipped externally, shell raised up looking like a mound, when should they full hatch before they are in danger? Because now I'm nervous!
Line the cookie sheet with paper towels. They will absorb extra water and the duckling cannot slip on it. You don't want slick surfaces. I never used marbles, because I feel they will make a mess anyway. I do have a round container that fits perfectly under the water dish coming a little bit over the lip of the dish. That actually catches a lot of water too. The marbles will prevent them from trying to take a bath, so it may be a good idea to use it for the first couple of days. Also put cardboard around the entire cage. That will keep any draft out and hold the heat in.

From external pip to hatching will take some time. 2 days is quite normal. They are just slow doing it. Sit tight and wait. We will take a look at this once 48 hours are up. So far it sounds good.
Well, tonight egg 14 will be 24hrs, and then around 10am tomorrow morning it will be 24hrs for egg 19(day 27 tomorrow) I'm not even going to count that tiny little flake a pip in egg 19, nothing was raised, not like I see this morning! I was thinking of putting down a wee-wee pad on the cookie tray. I also removed the wire on top of the cage that I had the light sitting on and that slight difference helped, the temp with the cage as is in the picture you just saw is how I want it to be, 95-96. I have a feeling if egg 13,16,19 pip they will be a day a part from the other two that have externally pipped. I'm not seeing anything happening or hearing anything happening to 16 & 18, but we'll see! I see a bit of water vibrating around 16, but no movement, so I really don't know who is moving, I'm suspecting it is 16, but not enough to visually see a rocking. I absolutely HATE the waiting game!! Can you tell!
I tell you it will be a wet mess eventually. After one week they produce so much that you wonder what to do next. I use a pee wee pad underneath all of the stuff. Walmart sells some no name brand in various sizes.

So I first put down the pee wee pad, then add the bathroom towels flat on the bottom, then I add the tray lined with paper towels, and add another towel for them to sleep on. That keeps it mostly dry. The tray will need to get cleaned several times per day. It's quite easy with paper towels. No need to use a pee wee pad there. The towels will work better and absorb more water. I crumble up the sleeping towel, like you did, for 2-3 days. After that it is folded up laying flat. This allows you to flip it over when it gets dirty. I usually put another towel in at night. Big clean up is each morning after they have taken their bath. They basically sit in a 5 gallon bucket next to it waiting for it to be done. Once they get older you will need to clean the whole thing twice per day. Be prepared to find rather dirty ducklings in the morning. Nothing a nice little warm bath doesn't fix. Plus they love the daily routine.

External pip can be very tiny, even to the point that you don't see it. I have had pips I didn't see but felt touching the egg when I put them into lock down. It still counts.
Ok, then maybe the pip will be 24hrs old today, I went into lock down yesterday because of the little peepers peeping their little bits close to air sac. Now I asked this question in one post, I've done so many posts that I can't keep them straight! With egg #13 and the glue/wax at the very tip and a bit down, from what I've been seeing with location of the pipping now in my eggs, and others, I think maybe 13 will be ok if/when it externally pips, the glue/wax isn't that far down to the end of the air sac line/duckling meet. So I'm really hoping for the best particularily for this little one. If I see an external pip I'm going to be jumping for joy and dancing and giving my son a great big hug because he wants this baby to survive so badly! ROFLMBO, my husband emailed me this morning from Afghanistan and asked if his(#18) was still viable. I wish I could answer that, the night before lock down it was, it just hasn't pipped or rocked yet to let me know otherwise, and neither has 16. I can't wait to candle momma's eggs she is sitting on to see how they are progressing. I've done those 1x a week, LOL she forces me to sit on my hands. She has been one heck of a broody momma!
Hatching is the hardest part on the bird, that is where you loose most of them. Incubating is so easy in comparison. That is just how nature works. Forget the internal piping part. I simply go by them rocking. The turner may not show the rocking, but they are usually pretty much spot on to the calendar time. You always have some that are over eager to get out and some that take longer. Hatching can run over 3 days, so you end up with different birth days. You go into lockdown once the first one pips or rocks. The rest most likely hasn't even pipped internally yet. It's always one that it way ahead. Ducklings need to externally pip within 24 hours or they will suffocate. The external pip may be so small that you don't even see it. You can take a small dull tool and pip their shell and then a toothpick to puncture the membrane to help. There is only one huge problem with that. You may help one egg, but you do hurt all the other eggs in the hatcher when you open it. So best is not to intervene and to let nature take its place. So never feel sorry for one egg that you may loose, because you are saving the other eggs.

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