Ducks in a classroom

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by classroomducks, Sep 19, 2009.

  1. classroomducks

    classroomducks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 19, 2009
    Fort Worth, Tx
    I have recently been awarded a grant to purchase an incubator and 12 mallard duck eggs to incubate and raise in my classroom as a hands on experience for my students. The incubator purchased was the top hatch incubator from the carolina biological supply. I have read both good things and bad about this incubator. If any one has any suggestions as to the best way to work this incubator or things I should watch out for upon embarking on this adventure, I would truly appreciate it. I have a place for the ducks to go when we are through, A small room with a constant temperature to place the incubator, and I have been reading everything I can get my hands on about hatching and raising ducks. Some of the things I'm wondering about is imprinting...if they imprint on myself or a student are the ducks going to be ruined for life? Any little hints would be appreciated. The eggs/incubator could be arriving any time in the next 3 weeks. Thanks for your help.
     
  2. tia

    tia Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 19, 2009
    Valdez, Alaska
    Hi... I have been incubating duck eggs in my classroom for the last three years. It is good that you have a room that has a constant temperature. That was one of my problems. I would also make sure that you have an instrument that measures the temperature and humidity accurately. I would set up you incubator and make sure the temp and humidity are right where you want them before you put the eggs in. I don't know how long it takes mallards to hatch but most ducks take 28 days. I would take a look at the calendar before you put the eggs in and make sure that 28th day doesn't fall on a Friday or a weekend. You don't want the children to miss the hatch. Unfortunately I started out with an incubator that wasn't very reliable, but am excited because I bought a new incubator and tried it this summer and it works fantastic. I can't wait to hatch a batch of ducklings with my students this spring. I kept the ducks I hatched at home this summer and they have made a couple of visits to the classroom so far this year. It is good for the children to see what they are like when they are full grown. We spread out a big plastic tarp and put a small pool in the center and the students gathered around and watched my 7 runner ducks swim and then they fed the ducks peas. Maybe you can make an arrangement with the person you give the ducks to - to bring them back in for a visit.
    This is the best site to get your questions answered. People on here have a wealth of information. I wish I would have found this site the first year I incubated eggs. They have helped me so much, and I find answers to questions that I haven't even thought of yet too. Good luck!!!
     
  3. classroomducks

    classroomducks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 19, 2009
    Fort Worth, Tx
    What kind of ducks do you raise? What kind of incubator have you used? What grade do you teach? I could use some ideas for lessons plans if you are willing to share. Also, where do you keep the ducks after they get too big for the brooder? In the classroom I havent figured out what there is to do with them, since they cant really go outside. What do you do with them on the nights and weekends. I have access to the school so I was just going to leave them there and check on them. I have my own ideas but since I have never done this before Im open to suggestions of what works. Thanks
     
  4. tia

    tia Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 19, 2009
    Valdez, Alaska
    The first two years we hatched Khaki Campbells and one of my students' family raises Khakis, so we got the eggs to hatch from them, and they took the ducks we hatched. I have a large plastic tub for a brooder, and I hang a light over it to keep the temp warm. I put towels in the bottom, change them twice a day and wash them out. That gets old pretty fast. Buy they are worth it. I left them at school most of the time, because it is just a five minute drive from my house and I could run and check on them. I did take them home weekends, just because I didn't want to be running back and forth. They can fall in the water dish and drown when small, so I put marbles in the water dish.
    The next year I ordered eggs and none of them hatched, then I decided to try again, because the kids were so disappointed (me too) I found a woman who had eggs not too far from here that were a mix (they ended up to be mostly blue Sweedish) we hatched two of them, and then kept them until school was out. I kept them for a while at home and then gave them to Libbey's Farm which is about 100 miles from here. They are pretty. I then hatched the 7 runner ducks over the summer on my own... I love the looks of the runners... I plan to keep them. I hope to get eggs from the runners to hatch in my classroom. We will see. I live in Alaska and it is hard to get eggs here in the spring because it is so cold, when they ship them, they get too cold. I am in the process of building some living quarters for them in my garage. I hope it works okay.... I'm thinking if I clean them everyday it will probably be okay.
    I had a little giant incubator, which I did not have much luck with. Though others on here have found them to work fine. It didn't for me, so this summer I bought a R- Com Suro which worked great. I had nine eggs, 8 were fertile, and 7 hatched, so I felt pretty good about that.

    Tia
     
  5. classroomducks

    classroomducks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 19, 2009
    Fort Worth, Tx
    ok great thanks for the info and the help.
     
  6. Duck Keeper

    Duck Keeper Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 18, 2009
    Out in the Boonies
    I hope the 'place' you have for the ducklings isn't a pond, the students' house or the wild somewhere! A farm or hobbyist that already has ducks would be the ideal place to raise babies at.

    I'm happy you're doing this, though hatching is extremely stressful for anybody watching! [​IMG]




    I swear, every time I hatch out more babies I give myself a new ulcer or something. [​IMG]
     
  7. classroomducks

    classroomducks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 19, 2009
    Fort Worth, Tx
    No no. My kids all come from very high poverty and have mental disabilities. Not a place I would send an animal home to nor would any of them want a duck. My dad is going to take them when we are finished. He has a 40 acre ranch in colorado. While hes never had ducks before, he has decided that raising ducks/geese/chickens will be his new endeavour. The place has 2 barns and now he finally has his excuse to build his pond. [​IMG] They have alpacas too. They started doing that about a year ago and now they are doing well with that. Hes excited. So dont worry they are going to go to a good place...assuming i have some ducklings that make it through my newbieness to hatching![​IMG]
     
  8. classroomducks

    classroomducks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    1
    119
    Sep 19, 2009
    Fort Worth, Tx
    ok my top hatch incubator was just delivered to my classroom. I have a couple of questions. I figured out where to put the large ball bearings, but not the itty bitty ones...i dont see anywhere where it says im supposed to put those little buggers. Are they extras? also, everyone comments on how noisy this incubator is...my isnt making a sound...did i do something wrong? the light is on and it is heating up...confused...[​IMG]
     
  9. tia

    tia Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 19, 2009
    Valdez, Alaska
  10. Duck Keeper

    Duck Keeper Chillin' With My Peeps

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    141
    Mar 18, 2009
    Out in the Boonies
    Oh good! I'm happy these kids get to see such an awesome thing though, and that the ducks get forty acres to slowly take over... [​IMG]

    You know they will...
     

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