Hens left duck eggs after chicks hatched. HELP!

leela2012

In the Brooder
7 Years
Mar 29, 2012
72
0
41
San Jose
Ok so our hens were sitting on some eggs, 2 were duck eggs. They hatched 3 days ago and the hens aren't really sitting much anymore. I have gone outside a few times and the eggs are cold. I candled them and the babies are still alive inside. I put them in a box with a heat lamp yesterday during the day and I couldn't get the temp to stay in at a certain degree. I have researched proper temps and humidty for hatching ducks, but since they are so close to hatching, what should I do. I don't want them to die. It's pretty warm here, no colder that the upper 50's night and 70"s during the day. At what temps would they die? Basically what can I do to get them by until they hatch? I have a thermometer and humity gauge. What temp should they be at, humidity and when should they be hatiching? Do you think they are ok, if I see movement in the egg, even if they are cold? These are Peking ducks. I placed them on April 1, they have basically been abandoned as of 2 days ago. :( HELP!!! Thanks!

Another thing, could I separate one of the hens from the babies and have her sit on the eggs? Will she actually sit, or stress about losing her babies?
 

TruBluCG

Chirping
6 Years
Apr 1, 2013
205
6
78
North Louisiana - near Texas line
Okay, I think I'm a little confused.... the hen was sitting on eggs; some of them hatched, but the duck eggs didn't hatch? Are the duck eggs the only eggs that are left unhatched?

When a hen is sitting eggs, she will get up and leave the nest from time to time. She doesn't sit there all day and night. She will take breaks. However, if you don't think she is sitting on them AT ALL, then you need to get them into an incubator. I don't know if a heat lamp will produce enough heat to hatch them. Plus they need some humidity, and they need to be turned.

Ducks incubate about 99.5 - 100.5 degrees. At least that's the temp that range that I use. I'm not sure how cold the eggs can get before they die, but I do know that a temperature of 104 and over will kill them. As far as the humidity, different people will tell you different things. I keep the humidity around 55% during the incubation period. However, when they get ready to hatch, the humidity needs to go up to about 65% (less than that and the ducklings can die during hatching).

You said that they were placed on the 1st of April. Today is the 24th. So, they SHOULD be around 24 days development. However, with them being a little cooler the past couple of days, it has slowed things down. So they may be developmentally around day 22 or 23. If you can get them in an incubator, I would think they would be just fine. I would get them up to the proper temp (99.5) and proper humidity (55%) and then turn them for the next two days. After that, increase the humidity and stop turning. They should start to hatch in a couple more days.

I hope that this helped you out. :) Good luck! Keep me posted!
 

leela2012

In the Brooder
7 Years
Mar 29, 2012
72
0
41
San Jose
Thank you so much! To clarify, yes the hens were laying on the eggs, and the only unhatched were the 2 ducks eggs. They do sit from time to time, but the eggs are not really warm any time I have gone out to check them. I will try to keep them at these temps and follow your instructions and see how it goes. I will keep my fingers crossed! Thanks so much for the advice!
 

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