Call Duck Hen failure to commit

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by BackyardBantams79, Apr 2, 2018.

  1. jofanx

    jofanx Songster

    215
    93
    111
    Oct 30, 2015
    This year I will stop turning about 5 - 7 days before the "expected" hatch date. Last year we really had some wonky issues and all the clutches began EXTERNALLY pipping day 30-31. I had intended to stop the autoturner... day 32. It was no surprise like 75% pipped at the wrong end. In one clutch I ended up losing 50% of the externally pipped wrong end ducklings--the ones that survived only did so because I intervened (I didn't realize they even pipped until I luckily walked by and heard peeping). It was a nightmare. So this year I'm taking precautions and am going to stop turning a week before just in case something like last year happens again.
     
  2. Ruralhideaway

    Ruralhideaway Crowing

    2,793
    4,595
    356
    Sep 21, 2017
    Upstate NY
    I don't know a thing about muscovy eggs. Do you incubate them flat or upright? I usually hear ducks, well call ducks anyway, like to be laid down through incubation.
     
  3. jofanx

    jofanx Songster

    215
    93
    111
    Oct 30, 2015
    I incubate them flat. They "usually" take 35 days to hatch so the 30-31 day threw me for a loop... we'll see what happens this year. It's like roulette except with eggs!
     
  4. Ruralhideaway

    Ruralhideaway Crowing

    2,793
    4,595
    356
    Sep 21, 2017
    Upstate NY
    That's a slow cooking duck! Duckie roulette, nice!
     
  5. BackyardBantams79

    BackyardBantams79 Chirping

    33
    50
    69
    Mar 30, 2018
    I bought some all natural enzyme egg cleaner... I wonder if that's safe? It says right on it "does not penetrate the egg shell" so I'd think it'd be ok. I'm too scared to use it now, lol. I should just use it on a few and see. I think though, I'll just keep going with what I'm doing. I have an incubator on it's way and should be here in a few minutes. I'll run it dry (it's pretty humid here on the coast) until day after tomorrow. Maybe 24 hours dry will help.

    Do you think running it dry until I see either an internal pip or external pip would be ok?
     
  6. Ruralhideaway

    Ruralhideaway Crowing

    2,793
    4,595
    356
    Sep 21, 2017
    Upstate NY
    Wow I'm just not sure how low is too low. I've read that long periods below 20% aren't safe though. Dry incubation seems somewhat new though and there's so many conflicting opinions out there.
     
  7. BackyardBantams79

    BackyardBantams79 Chirping

    33
    50
    69
    Mar 30, 2018
    UPDATE:

    Call Hen is sitting on her new clutch of eggs going on 4 days now! She's pretty committed this go around.

    As for the eggs I'm incubating, still no sign of pipping- internal or external. The two eggs are estimated to be at 25-26 days (could be wrong, but the incubator says 22 (4/21/18) and I started it a day before setting any eggs in it so it's a day off. The two were very obviously further along than the majority of the eggs at day 10 for them whereas the others were looking about day 5 and 6 which coincided with the date on the counter. The reason for this I suspect is that 4 days prior to putting eggs in the incubator, we had them under the hen. She sat on them (only because we locked her and her mate in their house- don't worry... it's large) for 3 days before she started kicking out a bunch. I figure this was because there were just too many (she kept laying after I stuck the clutch of eggs in her house and ended up with 19!). My kids were supposed to have been marking the eggs with dates every day, which they were... however, they failed to see the flaw of using washable markers :lau until after the fact and we had no idea which eggs were new and which were old enough to toss. So, we grabbed them over the two days it took her to decide she just wasn't willing to sit and ended up with the 12 we've been working on the majority of this incubation. We did lose one earlier this week. Ok, enough 'flash-back' time... here's where we currently are;

    I now have three incubators in the house. Two up and running. My original is now back up to 50% humidity as those eggs appear on schedule for moisture loss/air cell development. A borrowed Miller Little Giant forced air incubator but the fan is not working. I've checked the wiring and this was only used once before by the owner who didn't recall hearing a 'hum' of anything, so i suspect it never worked. So essentially it's a still air incubator. I was having a hard time getting the humidity up over 65 for a lockdown bator, but added a washcloth over the water channels, three small plastic containers of water, put some tape over the 8 holes in the top (why so many????). I have a digital temp/humidity gage in their that I have matched with another digital and 4 mercury thermometers so I feel confident it's accurate. We're reading 75% humidity, and 99F temp. (What's the opinion on reducing temp when pipping starts? I understand the chick creates heat when hatching so reducing the temp prevents the chick from overheating?)
     
  8. BackyardBantams79

    BackyardBantams79 Chirping

    33
    50
    69
    Mar 30, 2018
    The lowest I could even hope to get here on the coast is probably 30% and I wouldn't try for lower. As seen in my update, I did wipe some of the bloom off the eggs and now we're cookin' like crisco lol! All of a sudden the eggs are actually starting to lose some mass and gain some air cell. One even has the 'dip' on the side where I saw a shadow push up on the membrane... GETTING CLOSE! I can't even pretend anymore (although I though I was pretty sure) on how old they are :confused:. All I can say for absolute certain is they've had a steady temp of 99.5 (give or take a fraction of a degree) for 22 days. The duck was given the eggs 4 days prior to that... some she kept under her, some she booted out. Of course, I start my three 12 hour shifts tonight, *sigh*.
     
  9. BackyardBantams79

    BackyardBantams79 Chirping

    33
    50
    69
    Mar 30, 2018
    I finally broke down and damp wiped. Made sure and sanitized my hands in between eggs and used a different part of the cloth each egg to prevent spreading anything should one or more have bacterial blooms on them.

    It worked like a charm!!! Now the moment of truth is upon us... eggs are rocking and I heard peeping earlier today before the family came home and it got loud in here lol. I'm worried about leaving for work :confused: for my 12 hour shift. I have a hard time understanding how such a tiny little bird crammed in such a tight spot is going to break through that shell when I have to give a pretty good whack to the eggs to crack them open myself (before they were fertile and we tried a few). I know, I know,... they manage. But it's pretty unreal and amazing! I guess being at work will be good at preventing me from freaking out all night lol. I just worry about missing the window to help any who internally pip but can't manage to get through the shell to get some air after their vessels have been absorbed and they need that external hole. Makes me want to do safety holes in the ends of all of them lol! I will resist... until I freak out tomorrow lol. Fingers crossed the rest hold out to internally pip until tomorrow since I'm off until Sunday night.

    https://www.instagram.com/p/Bh-M3KrHJtc/?igref=ogexp&utm_source=fb_www_attr
     
    Ruralhideaway likes this.
  10. BackyardBantams79

    BackyardBantams79 Chirping

    33
    50
    69
    Mar 30, 2018
    We have progress!!! Two peepers have pipped externally and most of the rest have internally pipped as best I can tell (steamed up the bathroom to 75% humidity and had the heat cranked up so I could do a quick check- remind me never to move to Florida:cool:). The two that are peeping at me are rocking quite a bit. I hate that this process is so slow. I just need to go to bed so I can check on them in the morning. I kept expecting the hole to get bigger, but no. I see the chick moving around through it when i shine my light through the viewing window. But that and peeping. I'll post in the AM with pics.
     
    aart likes this.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: