Incubating dirty duck eggs

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by chickenology, Dec 7, 2011.

  1. chickenology

    chickenology Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 3, 2010
    I am new to incubating duck eggs, and received a dozen last week from a breeder. I knew that waterfowl eggs were typically dirtier than chicken eggs and that chicken eggs should not be washed before putting them in the incubator. So I assumed it was acceptable to put unwashed dirty duck eggs in the incubator also (a couple eggs looked extremely muddy). [​IMG] But now I am reading more about duck eggs and have seen that some people recommend washing them before placing them in the incubator if needed. So washing them now would obviously be a bad idea because of the temperature change (they are on day 4 of incubation). Do you think they will be OK to leave them in the incubator dirty? The last think I want is exploding rotten eggs. I will candle them in a few more days and see which are developing. When do you remove duck eggs from the incubator if they do not develop? I usually get rid of the chicken eggs that aren't developing by day 14. Hoping I didn't mess this one up already! [​IMG]
  2. ChickieBooBoo

    ChickieBooBoo Cold Canadian Chick

    Dec 2, 2009
    I don't wash any eggs that go in the incubator, they already have a protective coating that protects against bacteria entering the egg. I imagine its not very sanitary under a mother duck!
  3. duckyfromoz

    duckyfromoz Quackaholic

    Jan 11, 2010
    Rather than wash my eggs- I just try to remove excess dirt with a fingernail- or even some fine sandpaper if necessary. Depending on what I see when candling sooner- I discard eggs at day seven . Sometimes you can see clearly the bloodring that means the egg was fertile and started growing - but then stopped, so I take those out straight away. Any I am not sure about I do give the benefit of the doubt for a few extra days just to be 100 % sure.

    Best of luck with your hatch.
  4. dickhorstman

    dickhorstman Chillin' With My Peeps Premium Member

    Dec 8, 2009
    In a commercial hatchery all eggs are washed and sanitized before going in the incubator.
  5. Oregon Blues

    Oregon Blues Overrun With Chickens

    Apr 14, 2011
    Central Oregon
    You've already started them in the incubator. There is nothing to do now but to go on. Candle and remove any that are bad as you go along.

    If there is room in the incubator, put a spray bottle of water in there and give the eggs a spritz once a day. The spray water must be the same temperature as the eggs. That's why you keep it inside th incubator.
  6. chickenology

    chickenology Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 3, 2010
    Thank you for the great suggestions. I am going to keep my fingers crossed, but as of tonight when I candled them (day 5), 12 out of 14 are developing. I will look for a small squirt bottle to keep in the incubator for occasional spritzing. Maybe they aren't as muddy as I originally thought, the eggs are pigmented I believe. [​IMG] I can't wait for ducklings!!!
  7. chickenology

    chickenology Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 3, 2010
    OK, just read this post and this describes my eggs in the incubator exactly.

    And the eggs are cayugas! What I couldn't figure out was the variability of color in some of the eggs and the thickness of the coating. It makes sense that as ducks age the pigment lessens. I feel so stupid, I haven't posted in the duck section before, hope you can forgive a newbie! So much to learn....

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by