First incubation of duck eggs



Jun 8, 2016
I'm so nervous - this is the first time I've incubated duck eggs. When I was a child, my grandfather did it with a scary looking sheet metal/kerosene heated contraption. I'm surprised he didn't cook all the eggs. He had a relatively good hatch rate. I'm not sure how.

I'm on day 25 of the incubation. I'm using a Brinsea Max II EX - such a cool machine. I started with 13 Golden 300 Layer hatching eggs from Metzer Farms. Three were not fertile, and two died, so I'm down to 8 eggs that as of today they were are still going strong. I may have one other dead egg, but I swear I saw movement last night - we'll see.

I've lowered the temperature to 99 degrees, and upped the humidity to 65% turned off the cooling feature, turned off the turning feature, and put in the hatching mat. When they start pipping, I'll increase the humidity to 80%, and open the vent 50%.

Any other advice?
I'm in the same boat as you, so following this. But I'm on day 8, with only 3 out of 7 left (long shot anyways- eggs were stored in my basement and fridge). I'm using a Farm Innovators 4250.
Did you do the "cooling" every day for 15 minutes prior to lockdown??

Yes/No... The incubator has a setting that does it automatically, I hope it worked!
This probably shouldn't be taken as advice...but wanted to throw it out as encouragement (best word I can think of to describe it anyway). I've never tried incubating eggs in an incubator before this year. I've allowed broody hens to incubate but incubating and hatching indoors was too intimidating. This year I decided to buy an incubator after we found several dead ducklings around our broody Pekin's nest.
I ended up taking two clutches of eggs from her. The first was only 2 eggs, only one hatched (and is currently a VERY spoiled house duck). The second clutch was 10 eggs, must have all been laid at different times because they hatched over a span of two weeks. When I added the second clutch of rescued eggs to the incubator I already had 11 eggs from my other ducks in the incubator, and added them a few days apart. So I've had a very staggered hatch...which I've read isn't a great idea. I had to switch to hand turning, the humidity fluctuated, we lost power for several hours... basically I probably did a lot of "wrong" stuff. As of this morning 17 of the 21 eggs have hatched. I did have to help a few, but this site has so much wonderfully helpful information and VERY helpful members, folks around here should be able to calm your nerves. They definitely helped me!
Good luck with the duckies! These last few days of waiting are tough. At least they were for me! :D
The only other thing I would recommend is opening the vent 100% now (I actually keep mine completely open through the entire incubation and hatch process)

Ducks take a long time to hatch. Upwards of 48 hours from initial pip is not uncommon. So be prepared for a grueling wait. :D

Best of luck!

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