Hatching Call Ducks under Broody Silkie Hens - Advice Welcomed

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Buugette, Jan 26, 2012.

  1. Buugette

    Buugette [IMG]emojione/assets/png/2665.png?v=2.2.7[/IMG]Cra

    May 26, 2009
    Bucks County, PA
    This is my first time hatching duck eggs. [​IMG] My girls have always had very successful chick hatches, but now they are being put to the test with 14 call duck eggs.

    The eggs were given to my Silkies on the Jan 21, so we are not even at a week. I brought Maxine and Madeline inside and they are happily nesting in a rabbit hutch (in my dining room - sun room too cold). It was funny watching each one select the particular eggs they wanted to sit on. They took turns tucking the eggs under them.

    Once a day I take Maxine and Madeline outside to do their business, stretch their legs, eat, drink (I always have food and water available in their hutch)...

    I know I have to start spritzing the eggs down with warm water at some point, but have not yet started that. I plan to attempt to candle next week.

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

    Diana
     
  2. k0r1nag

    k0r1nag Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have no tips but thought I would share my experience. Last Spring I used a banty cochin to sit a clutch of 12 call duck eggs. She sat the nest outside in a small house and run that sat on the ground in a bed of grass hay. I never wet the eggs, changed the humidity or did anything other than feed and water her as usual. Of the 12 eggs, 10 hatched perfectly, one never developed and one didn't make it out of the shell, although developed fully in the shell. These eggs were from mostly pet quality calls (larger bills, a bit too large in size and weight) and so they didn't seem to need any help with hatching as some people have found with the show quality birds. I did take the ducklings once hatched and reared them in a brooder in order to give them a different diet and more closely monitor their waterer.

    The calls have been lots of fun to watch and enjoy as they have grown up. Enjoy!\

    Korina
     
  3. m.kitchengirl

    m.kitchengirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 4, 2011
    Maine
    I plan to follow this thread, since I was about to post & ask for advice re: Silkie Vs. Cochin & who would be best suited to hatch my duck eggs (Ancona ducks, so I plan to get 2 broody hens).

    Not trying to hijack your thread, just get tips on what to do when I make my choice.
     
  4. CelticOaksFarm

    CelticOaksFarm Family owned, family run

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    Florida - Space Coast
    At day 6-8 you can candle and see veining easily in Call Duck eggs. Bantu hens make good broody for CD's. Just brood them away from the hens after hatch and be very mindful of open water because they are very small and get cold and too wet easily.
     
  5. cat1994

    cat1994 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 12, 2010
    Southeast MO

    Why do you have to take them away from the broody hen and raise them yourself? I was planing on using silkie hens to hatch and raise my calls aswell but do I need to take the ducklings away, why can't the hen just raise them? Thanks
     
  6. CelticOaksFarm

    CelticOaksFarm Family owned, family run

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    It is because they are waterfowl and make a huge wet mess very quickly that the chickens don't like, and is not healthy for the chickens. The ducklings will need water to dip and clean their nares in, which takes dunking their head. They also love to play in any water source. They require water when eatting as well. You won't want a large open water source or risk them drowning, or becoming wet/chilled and dieing. Momma chicken won't go in the water with them like a call duck mother would, so you take the place of momma call duck and supervise them, dry them, and change their brooder bedding ALL the time to keep it clean and dry.
     
  7. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    May 3, 2009
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    Celtic oaks is correct, but given enough space with food and water away from the 'brooding' area and supervised swimming sessions, chickens can very successfully raise ducklings. Mother hens do become panicky when the ducklings enter the water. It's like, "What the heck are you kids doing?"
     
  8. cat1994

    cat1994 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 12, 2010
    Southeast MO
    Oh ok I thought maybe it was because they made bad moms or something like that but it is just easier to keep everybody healthy and happy when you do the raising yourself thanks
     
  9. Buugette

    Buugette [IMG]emojione/assets/png/2665.png?v=2.2.7[/IMG]Cra

    May 26, 2009
    Bucks County, PA
    I candled 4... we have veins!
     
  10. Buugette

    Buugette [IMG]emojione/assets/png/2665.png?v=2.2.7[/IMG]Cra

    May 26, 2009
    Bucks County, PA
    9 days and counting... all eggs have candled with development and movement. Silkie mommies are doing their duty and sitting strong loving their eggs.
     

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