First Call Babies Hatching! UPDATED WITH BABY PICTURES!

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Sweetfolly, Apr 12, 2011.

  1. Sweetfolly

    Sweetfolly Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Kildare, Wisconsin
    I'm SOOOOO excited! [​IMG]

    Last year, I finally took the plunge into Call ducks. I initially avoided them because I saw the loudness and the ability to fly as drawbacks, but I was at a swap last March and saw a lonely little White Call drake for sale for $5. He was dirty, quiet, his bill and legs were peeling, he was (badly) pinioned, and the seller didn't even know what breed he was! I had to "rescue" him! I named him "Sunday":

    [​IMG]

    Well, once he got healthy he had quite the endearing attitude! I HAD to have more Calls! So, I bought a few Call ducklings locally and bought a few pairs from duckluck here on BYC. I had a flock of 12, but I recently got engaged and moved and had to downsize to just 4 Calls. [​IMG] The hardest to let go of were my flock of Whites, but my fiancée promises me that when we move into out new house this fall, I can spend as much money as I want to start up a flock of Self-Blacks, Bibbeds, Anconas, and Magpies instead - because he likes the Black and Black & White ducks. [​IMG]

    BUT, I currently have 14 Call eggs in the 'bator (I'm doing staggered hatches, putting 4 or 5 eggs in the 'bator every few days), and 3 in the hatcher! I've been monitoring the ones in the hatcher like a crazy woman because I've heard so many horror stories about how hard Calls are to artificially incubate, and how they have a tendency to fail to pip on their own, BUT lo and behold, I checked on the incubator a little while ago, and WE HAVE A PIP! [​IMG] It's Day 26, so right on time for a bantam duck!

    Here's one of the mommies, "Sprinkles", with the daddy, "Jet" (the ducks have been re-arranged since these pictures were taken - Jet, Sprinkles, and a Butterscotch hen are in one pen, and my original White drake, Sunday, is hanging out in a bachelor pen with my Mallard drake, Lullaby):
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I originally had 2 of Sprinkles' hatch-mates - they were a very striking Blue Pied pattern (the same as a Fawn & White Indian Runner pattern, but with Blue and White), but their type was pretty bad - they were streamlined like a Mallard, with long, slender bills. So, I sold the two of them to a pet home and held onto little Sprinkles. I know from talking to Sprinkles' original breeder that some of her full siblings have also hatched out with Magpie and Ancona patterns, so I can't wait to see what she produces with Jet! Sprinkles is also carrying a recessive White gene (her mom was a White Call), so I'm toying with the idea of breeding her to Sunday later this summer (about half of their babies would be pure White), just for sentimental reasons so that I always have some of Sundays White offspring in the flock. He was an older guy already when I got him.

    It looks like I only have another day or two to wait for the first babies though! [​IMG]
    I'll update here as the babies hatch!
     
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2011
  2. duckyfromoz

    duckyfromoz Quackaholic

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    Wonderful news. Good on you for taking on Sunday - it has led you in a whole new direction. Calls are very easy to get attached too- they have such incredible characters in such tiny bodies. Fingers are crossed for some great hatch results for you.
     
  3. Hattiegun

    Hattiegun Chillin' With My Peeps

    Congrats Sweet... I have 4 calls also from DuckLuck ..I luv them but I do want more females.
    Good luck with the babies. cant wait to see pics.
     
  4. bantamboy

    bantamboy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    i so wish i had a pond so i could raise me some ducks im just scared that if there is no water they will leave
     
  5. Sweetfolly

    Sweetfolly Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 17, 2009
    Kildare, Wisconsin
    We have 2 pips now! [​IMG]
     
  6. Sweetfolly

    Sweetfolly Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 17, 2009
    Kildare, Wisconsin
    Well, the Call eggs hadn't made much progress this morning - they had BOTH made a second pip about a half-inch away from the first one, so I figured I'd carfeully open them up a little just to see what was going on...because we all know I'm a habitual "helper" when it comes to hatching babies! [​IMG]

    Both babies were a little bit shrink-wraped, which is what I figured. I have the humidity so high that the walls of the 'bator are dripping with condensation, but these darn Calls were still stuck. One's about ready to come all the way out, so I took the whole top off of that shell. The other one still has lots of blood vessels in the membrane, so I only took a bit of shell off of that one and left it alone.

    They're BOTH Blue Pied/Magpies. Just have to wait for them to hatch and fluff out to see the pattern! [​IMG]

    Here's what one of their mommies and her siblings looked like when they hatched last year:

    [​IMG]

    And when they got older...with some of my Indian Runners:

    [​IMG]

    And here's the happy parents today:

    [​IMG]

    I'm SOOOO excited! New baby pictures to come! [​IMG]
     
  7. Hattiegun

    Hattiegun Chillin' With My Peeps

    awwww blue/pied magpies I want Magpies sooooooooo bad. !!
    [​IMG] [​IMG] hope all is well.. cant wait to seeee !!! [​IMG]
     
  8. Sweetfolly

    Sweetfolly Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 17, 2009
    Kildare, Wisconsin
    I was away from home last night, got back this morning and my fiancée had both ducklings fluffed out in the brooder for me. I got quite a surprise! The second one that hatched is actually a Blue Fawn, which isn't a color I'd thought I'd get from this cross! [​IMG]

    It took me all day to figure out the Blue Fawn duckling mystery - it was so simple! [​IMG] My black drake must be split (heterozygous) for the extended black gene (E/e+). So, he'll pass extended black on to half of his babies with the Butterscotch hen. That crossing is going to give me 50% Blue Fawns, and 50% Blue Bibbeds. [​IMG]

    And it gets even more exciting than that! My Blue Bibbed call hen's mom was White, and her dad was Butterscotch. Mom must have been Extended Black "underneath" the White in order to produce all Blue Bibbed/Magpie ducklings (the entire clutch was that color). So, that means that my little Sprinkles and my Black drake, Jet, are BOTH split for the Extended Black gene. From those two, I could get: Blue Dusky, Blue Bibbed, Self-Blue, Blue Fawn, Dusky, Grey, Black Bibbed, and Self-Black ducklings! [​IMG] Which is super-exciting, because I've been looking all over the country for Dusky Calls with no luck (well, I found two breeders, but neither wanted to let go of any of their birds), so I'd LOVE to be able to start a line of them from my own birds! And I didn't think I'd be getting Self-Blues and Blacks for another generation yet, but nearly 20% of the offspring from Jet and Sprinkles should be Self-Blues and Blacks!!! [​IMG]

    Anyways, that's the end of my genetics rant for the day. Sorry for those of you who aren't interested! [​IMG]


    I have another Call egg in the 'bator that's internally pipped and due to hatch in the next 2-3 days. We'll see what hatches next! [​IMG] I do love surprises! [​IMG]

    Blue Bibbed duckling:
    [​IMG]

    Blue Fawn Duckling (with Mille Cochin chicks in the background! [​IMG] ):
    [​IMG]

    Both babies together:
    [​IMG]
     
  9. desertdarlene

    desertdarlene Chillin' With My Peeps

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    San Diego
    Awwwwwww!
     

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