Help with incubating chicken and duck eggs together!

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by SeaHen, May 29, 2010.

  1. SeaHen

    SeaHen Songster 9 Years

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    Mar 14, 2009
    Springfield, OR
    This was not my plan, but life threw me a curve ball today.

    A couple of weeks ago I contacted a woman on Craigslist about a Welsh Harlequin drake she wanted to sell. I thought he would make a perfect companion for my lonely rescue BO drake, and we finally made arrangements for me to go pick him up this morning. A few days ago she mentioned that she had a Pekin duck she would throw in for free because she was a friend to the WH drake and had never integrated into the regular duck flock, and I said I would be happy to take her too. So I get to the house and immediately notice that the "Welsh Harlequin" drake is crossbred with Pekin, which really doesn't matter to me other than that she had implied he was purebred. The Pekin duck was suddenly nowhere to be found, so the woman sent her kids to search under the house for her, and I jokingly mentioned that she was probably setting on a nest of eggs somewhere. Sure enough, the kids came back carrying the duck and a box of 15 eggs, which they promptly loaded in the car for me, along with the WH/Pekin drake. I drove home rehearsing what I was going to tell my husband and daughter, who didn't even know I was bringing a second duck home, much less her clutch of eggs!

    I put the two new ducks in the dog run (they both hate my other drake so far), transferred the nest and eggs into a pet crate, put the mom on top of the eggs and shut the crate door, assuming she would resume setting on them. Within a few hours it became apparent that she wanted nothing to do with them as she had pushed them all out of the nest and began carelessly walking over them. One was already cracked by the time I reluctantly removed them and brought them in the house to candle.

    We happen to be on day 6 of incubating our very first batch of chickie eggs, and 11 are progressing right on schedule. Number 12 had a small repaired crack on day 1 and never developed. The duck eggs appear to be about halfway through their incubation period by my best guesstimate, which would mean the ducklings and chicks are due to hatch at roughly the same time. I crammed everybody into my little homemade styrofoam incubator and here I am.

    I seem to recall reading that it's not a good idea to incubate different fowl breeds together, but can it be done successfully? I know they have different temperature and humidity requirements, and I think I remember that duck eggs should be misted with warm water daily. Did I also read that they should be positioned on their sides rather than large end up? Oh, what I would give for a broody hen right now!

    Any advice or recommendations will be gratefully appreciated!
     
  2. kid-n-chickens

    kid-n-chickens Chirping

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    Feb 14, 2010
    the misting of the duck eggs is to attempt to keep them air cell from getting to large and shrink wrapping the duck. Yes you want to incubate the duck eggs on there side hand turning 3 times a day. I would shoot for humidity of 55% humidity till lock down and then increase up to 70% Good Luck!
     
  3. SeaHen

    SeaHen Songster 9 Years

    261
    14
    161
    Mar 14, 2009
    Springfield, OR
    Thank you so much!
     

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