Found mallard egg and bought incubator!

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by skiwee, Jun 25, 2016.

  1. skiwee

    skiwee Out Of The Brooder

    18
    0
    32
    Apr 5, 2016
    Maryland
    So I have this pair of mallards taking up space in my pool and yard. At first the female would go away every day for a few hours most likely laying an egg. Every day or so I'd find a spare egg on the pool deck, in the grass, in the side walk. I figured she was just too lazy to go to her nest somewhere and i moved the eggs to my garden out of the way every time i found one. The next day the eggs were gone. There is a fox that lives nearby so that might have taken the eggs. I then figured I would buy an incubator and see if any of these eggs were fertile if I was lucky enough to find another one. I bought a small incubator similar to the one I had many years ago as a child.

    It came in the mail and the next day after a cold rain there was an egg right on my pool deck. I rescued it and popped it into the incubator really with little hope it would live let alone fertile. I have a humidity thingy too in there though we never used them when I was little and we used the other incubator and always hatched eggs. Humidty is at 45. Not sure that is right.

    I waited 2 days and decided to candle it with a flash light. Didn't see much so waited another day. Today I candled it and I see veins and a heart beat! I was shocked! From an egg sitting out on the cold concrete in the rain to an embryo in 3 days.

    So I'm wondering what humidty should i be going for. And since this is a mallard, if it does hatch, will it eventually fly away when it gets big enough and be with his friends? LOL
     
  2. AtlantisPeeps

    AtlantisPeeps Chillin' With My Peeps

    630
    36
    113
    May 19, 2014
    US
    The temp should be 98–99.9 °F (36.7–37.7 °C) and Humidity at 30-50%. Day 25 is lockdown and up the temp to 70%. Should hatch day 28!
     
  3. Ravynscroft

    Ravynscroft For the Love of Duck Premium Member

    31,190
    17,449
    676
    Nov 30, 2014
    Middle Tennessee
    Humidity sounds fine... if it's a still air bator temp should be 101-102, if it has a fan then 99.5 too 100... I usually do 100 for duck eggs in mine (with fan)... watch the air cell growth to make sure it loses enough moisture, if it doesn't you might just need to mist the egg once a day...

    As a single duckling, it will imprint on you... it also means it will need more time and care than if it had brothers or sisters... might want to see around hatchkng time if you can find some ducklings to purchase to keep it company... if it imprints fully, they won't fly away...
     
  4. skiwee

    skiwee Out Of The Brooder

    18
    0
    32
    Apr 5, 2016
    Maryland
    Thanks everyone! So far the incubater is at 99.9 and humidty is now at 35. Should the humdity be low to let the air sack grow better? I see one and it is size of a quarter. At lockdown I raise humdity to 70%? I didn't think of it imprinting on me. I was hoping to raise it til it was old enough to fly the coop! I thought I was doing a fun but good deed. LOL
     
  5. Ravynscroft

    Ravynscroft For the Love of Duck Premium Member

    31,190
    17,449
    676
    Nov 30, 2014
    Middle Tennessee
    [​IMG]

    I'd leave it at that for now, and just compare to the chart on those days to make sure it's progressing properly...

    Returning something to the wild that was not born in the wild is a lot of work... not only would you need to either keep it from imprinting or break that bond later, but you'd have to teach it how to survive since it's natural parents can't... you could check with the local rehabber in your area, but careful, I think taking wild mallard eggs for incubation is technically illegal... otherwise, you're gonna have to keep it as a domestic duck...
     
  6. skiwee

    skiwee Out Of The Brooder

    18
    0
    32
    Apr 5, 2016
    Maryland
    Ok so I've been turning it 4 times a day. I candled it tonight and noticed something. There is a small air sack on the blunt end of the egg. I see also what looks to be the eye of the duck now. What I notice though is when candling the entire other half of the egg is clear. Like the yolk is only one one half of the egg and not sort of floating in the middle. Is that normal. The entire one side is clear and the yolk is one other side. The air sack is on top. Should the yolk be able to move to other side if i turn it? I've been turning every day 4 times so I can't see it getting stuck but now im worried. Thanks!
     
  7. Ravynscroft

    Ravynscroft For the Love of Duck Premium Member

    31,190
    17,449
    676
    Nov 30, 2014
    Middle Tennessee
    That is normal for eggs incubating on their sides and being hand turned... it actually does move around, it's just hard to see... that's the embryo and when you turn it, it will rotate to the side that is up each time... :)
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by