Incubating Duck Eggs for the First Time...

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by UrbanMama, Feb 5, 2009.

  1. UrbanMama

    UrbanMama Gone Country....

    Sep 27, 2008
    Even though I've hatched hundreds of eggs...I feel like a total Newb here! [​IMG] I've succumbed to the temptation of Aubrey's (BoggyBottomBantams) Blue/Black Cayugas and I need to make sure I have everything down on hatching ducklings before they get here.

    So...please correct me if I'm wrong, but after a ton of research, this is what I've come up with.

    Days 1-7=Temp 99.5* and relative humidity 55% (wet bulb..which I don't have..84.5*F) Leave them in the turner and disturb as little as possible.

    Days 7-25=
    Temp 99.5* and relative humidity 55%. Spray eggs with bator temp water once a day and allow to cool just a bit. (Aubrey had a great idea for this...put a little spray bottle right in the bator so the water is already at the right temp) Keep in turner.

    Days 25-28=Temp 98.5-99* and humidity 65% (to be raised to 80% at first sign of pipping...I'll probably just raise it on day 27 to be safe.)

    The other thing I read that I found interesting...but probably wouldn't on day 25 you can "float" the eggs in water and the ones with live ducklings will wiggle around. Supposedly this also "softens" the shell and makes it easier for the duckling to hatch. However...since the shells are porous, I'd be terrified to try it...wouldn't it drown them??

    My big question is this. I have 2 pre-set Hovabator Genesis's that I use as bator and hatcher. They both stay at 100.4-100.6*

    Is there enough of a difference that I should re-do the factory temps? I'm assuming days 1-25 they'd be okay (only 1/2-1 degree difference) but should I change the hatcher? I'm going to have some quail eggs in with the ducks...

    Thanks in advance for any tips/suggestions! [​IMG]
  2. cherub78

    cherub78 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 5, 2008
    Central NY
    I am "bumping" this topic for you in hopes you get a response, as I would like to see what others have to say. [​IMG]
  3. MissPrissy

    MissPrissy Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

    May 7, 2007
    Forks, Virginia
    My bator runs 99.5- 100 I don't change the setting.

    I do not mist duck eggs nor do I cool them. (For goose eggs, yes. Duck eggs, no.)

    I keep the humidity at 65% - 70% up to day 26.

    Then I stop turning, boost the humidity to 80 - 85%.

    Wait for pips.

    I have collected 1 dozen duck eggs from my girls and will be setting them in my new Dicky Incubator. I will be monitoring the temps with the new bator.

    Just a note for newer members -

    Bumping threads is against the rules. Given time people active in different forums will answer questions as they get to them. Answers can come much slower over the weekends than during weekdays.
  4. UrbanMama

    UrbanMama Gone Country....

    Sep 27, 2008
    Thank you Sharon and Angie!

    Angie, I can't wait to see how the ducklings do in your Dickey. It's on my "wishlist"! [​IMG]

    The eggs have been in since Sat. So now all I can do is [​IMG] and pray.
  5. shelleyd2008

    shelleyd2008 the bird is the word

    Sep 14, 2008
    Adair Co., KY
    Well, I see that your original post was 4 days ago!! Sorry we missed it [​IMG]

    I took most of my instruction from Miss P regarding duck eggs. The only thing I did differently was I did mist and cool mine. But I had goose eggs in there at the same time, so I figured it wouldn't hurt them. (none of the goose eggs hatched by the way)

    If your bator is set at 100.4, I would just leave it alone. That is not that much higher than 'normal', and shouldn't affect them.

    I hand-turned mine, so as for 'disturb as little as possible', I don't know what to tell you about that. I think that shipped eggs period should be disturbed as little as possible, since they have been through so much already!

    Since it has been so long since your original post, did you get your eggs yet? I just love hatching duck eggs, they are just the cutest little things! But be prepared for a lot of stinkies!! They are downright nasty as babies!

    Good luck with your hatch! [​IMG]
  6. UrbanMama

    UrbanMama Gone Country....

    Sep 27, 2008
    [​IMG] Yup, I got some of Boggy Bottoms blue/black cayugas and I'm hoping for some Scovies soon too. I also went in on a duckling order with Redhen. [​IMG] I already bought the bedding pellets after reading your posts! [​IMG]

    I did play with my Genesis a little bit before I set the eggs. If I set the toggle switch to 3, the temp stays at 99.7. If I set it to 2, It sits around 98.7. So I think it'll be pretty easy to lower the heat for hatching. I left it at 3 for now (99.7ish)

    I think I will mist can't hurt them right? I read that it actually helps with moisture loss... [​IMG]
  7. Smartie_Pants

    Smartie_Pants Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 5, 2008
    Madisonville, KY
    Does it really matter if you mist them or not? The mama doesn't mist them when she sits, so why do you need to do it in the bator? Can you just keep the temp and humidity right and still have a sucessful hatch?
  8. tonini3059

    tonini3059 [IMG]emojione/assets/png/2665.png?v=2.2.7[/IMG]Luv

    Nov 6, 2008
    Southwestern PA
    I think it is to simulate the mother duck going into the water and returning to lay on the eggs.
  9. Smartie_Pants

    Smartie_Pants Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 5, 2008
    Madisonville, KY
    So does it make the hatch rate better? Or is it the same either way?
  10. tonini3059

    tonini3059 [IMG]emojione/assets/png/2665.png?v=2.2.7[/IMG]Luv

    Nov 6, 2008
    Southwestern PA
    I did not see a difference in my two hatches. I did one with and one without.

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