Incubation progress of Muscovy eggs

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by charlindabob, Jul 24, 2013.

  1. charlindabob

    charlindabob Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 25, 2009
    central Florida
    I candled my Muscovy eggs today (day 14 on a 34-35 day hatch) and tomorrow I will candle once again as I weigh each egg and lay them on their side, but I have a question:

    All my eggs show some increase in the air sac and all show blood veins and I even saw some dark spots (eye?) in several, but at the pointed end (down end) I see in each egg what appears to be clear liquid without any blood veins (just clear) and above that, holding the egg pointed end down, the duck "mass" and above that the air sac. Is the clear liquid in the bottom of the egg normal?....Thanks!
     
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  2. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia "I Believe" Premium Member

    http://wildliferehabber.com/sites/default/files/wr_duckeggchart.jpg maybe this will help.
     
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  3. charlindabob

    charlindabob Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 25, 2009
    central Florida
    Thanks, the chart is great and I can adapt that to a Muscovy timetable, but it doesn't solve my issue. I have clear liquid in the bottom of my otherwise viable eggs. Every one of them. I don't see that on any chart and am concerned. Today is weigh-in day and lay on their side day and all I can say is "Good grief Charlie Brown!". I am more confused now than ever.

    At two weeks eggs should lose about 5.6% of their weight, right? That's 2.8% per week if I understand correctly. Well, my 14 all viable looking eggs have lost from 3.7% to 10.8% in weight over the first two weeks. Here is the break down:

    start in grams day 15 lost in grams lost % should weigh

    81g 74g 7g 8.6% 77g
    85g 81g 4g 4.7% 80g
    81g 76g 5g 6.2% 77g
    84g 79g 5g 6.0% 79g
    81g 75g 6g 7.4% 77g
    86g 82g 4g 4.6% 81g
    74g 66g 8g 10.8% 70g
    81g 78g 3g 3.7% 77g
    82g 75g 7g 8.5% 77g
    83g 79g 4g 4.8% 78g
    75g 72g 3g 4.0% 71g
    80g 76g 4g 5.0% 76g
    84g 79g 5g 6.0% 79g
    76g 71g 5g 6.6% 72g

    I rounded some figures off, but what really surprises me is some of the weight loss differences in these eggs. They were all in the same incubator on the same shelf and all treated exactly the same. The one that lost 10.8 percent was the smallest egg, but another that weighed only ONE gram more only lost 4.0%. From one extreme to the other. Ideally the second column and the last column should read the same.

    Hope my little chart comes out ok.
     
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2013
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  4. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia "I Believe" Premium Member

    That's a big difference in weight but I am lost when it comes to incubating that's why I let my ducks do it for me. Did you say you were reading the thread about hatching Scovy's? and looks like according to the chart there could be some liquid in there but not like your saying, sure wish I could help you.
     
  5. charlindabob

    charlindabob Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 25, 2009
    central Florida
    My eggs have some clear liquid in the bottom (pointed end down) of the egg and the candle chart does not show this at all. ALL my eggs have this liquid bottom. I just don't know if that is normal or not. Anyway, they are now laying on their sides. Time will tell.

    The weight differences are somewhat disconcerting as a couple with the exact starting weight have different weights at day 15. I suppose in reality there could be many reasons, diet of the duck that laid that particular egg, eggs from different ducks, different age of ducks that laid my 14 eggs, different humidity and/or temperature when the eggs were laid, different time elapse from time laid until time collected and so forth. I guess any one or a combination of the reasons could be the reason. But in my mind, I have 14 eggs and just about 14 different percentages of weight loss and it seems the weight loss should be very close to each other.

    Well, it is what it is. All eggs are still in the automatic turner but now on their side (side 0) and tomorrow will be turned once to side X. Temperature is holding at 99.3 and humidity is 45 over 43. 10 out of 14 are within one gram of where they should be, so I am not going to try to change the humidity in the 'bator. All eggs have been cooled for about 15 minutes or so and misted with distilled water which was in a spray bottle inside the incubator.

    Tomorrow, assuming the temperature and humidity readings are ok, I only have to spray the eggs at the beginning of the 15 minute cooling period after I turn them to X.

    edit: Changed my mind. Tomorrow I will separate the eggs that lost too much in weight and nestle them in damp cotton balls in the above tray and dampen the cotton balls once a day. Hopefully they will absorb some moisture and gain a bit by day 21 which is the next weigh-in. The eggs right on the money or the ones off plus or minus one gram I will not make any changes to.
     
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2013
  6. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia "I Believe" Premium Member

    Keep updating as you go this is very interesting.
     
  7. charlindabob

    charlindabob Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 25, 2009
    central Florida
    Day 16...Incoherent ramblings...Incubator temperature is holding at about 99.0 so I tweaked it a bit to raise a few tenths of a point. Hopefully it will read 99.3 to 99.5 when I check it again in an hour or two. Humidity is 47/45 and easily jumps into the 50's when incubator door is open. Our rainy humid Florida weather is impossible to easily work with as it really fluctuates and is ALWAYS too high. I have about two square feet of silica gel in the incubator to help absorb excess moisture but it is a losing battle.

    Now the balancing act.....my eggs that are near enough in weight where they should be I only lightly mist once a day and the five eggs that need more moisture are in the upper tray with dampened cotton balls and heavily sprayed once a day. I need low humidity for some and higher humidity for some, all in the same incubator! [​IMG]

    After I had removed the five eggs to the tray above, after I had misted the eggs and after I had turned them to X and turned the automatic turner back on and shut the incubator door (I have a clear see-thru door), I decided I wanted to change how the eggs lay in the plastic egg holder in the tray. I think I can lay them just opposite of what you would normally place eggs in there and they would have a lower profile in the tray. The way they are now they ride high in the plastic egg holder and I worry a bit about the automatic turner and them tumbling out. They been that way through several turns so I suppose they will be ok. The plastic egg holders were made to place eggs pointed side down and not made for eggs lying on their sides as they would in a real nest situation. Tomorrow I will change that though. Made a note to self in my book.
     
  8. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia "I Believe" Premium Member

    So interesting, right now your life is revolving around those eggs, sure hope it pays off. and did you know that Celtic Farms who is in Fl has French Whites and sells eggs?
     
  9. charlindabob

    charlindabob Chillin' With My Peeps

    476
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    153
    Jan 25, 2009
    central Florida
    Day 17.................Temperature hovering from 99.1 to 9.3 again today. I may have to tweak it ever so much to reach the perfect 99.5. Humidity is reading anywhere from 40 to 45 depending on time of day. Not perfect, but close enough for government work as we used to say.

    Being retired has its benefits as I have more time to devote to my passions, but sometimes little motivation or energy, so I suppose it has its drawbacks too. I did change the configuration of the eggs in the plastic GQF egg holders so the eggs were in a lower profile in the tray. I used only one cotton ball in the divot under each egg and I think there is much less danger of the egg escaping where I placed it during automatic turning. Today we are 0 on the hand turning.

    Tomorrow I want to candle again as it will be the first time I've candled them since laying them on their side in the incubator. I will probably add four more cotton balls around egg #7 and saturate them to try to raise the weight of this egg. It had lost almost twice the weight it should have and maybe I can rectify that somewhat.

    Thanks to a BYC member, I found on Amazon a couple more thermometers like the one I have attached to one of the trays. When they arrive, I will have the same model thermometer attached to all three trays. As it is, I have one attached to one tray which reads in tenths of a degree and one on the top control/water shelf that doesn't read in tenths, but at least it gives me sort of a back up and both should be very near in their read outs. Once these thermometers arrive, I will have four thermometers in the 'bator.

    On another note, Gracie my Embden goose laid her second egg today. I marked the first one and will leave it in the nest. This egg weighed 170 grams and when I gather four of them, I will check for fertilization. She laid 30-40 eggs this spring and I attempted to hatch them in a Styrofoam incubator instead of firing up the GQF, but none showed to be fertile. Temperature really fluctuated in that incubator though. I will use the cabinet incubator this time.
     
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2013
  10. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia "I Believe" Premium Member

    Looking forward to hearing what you find when you candle. and Yay for Gracie may she hatch out some goslings!! But ...why wouldn't you let her incubate? just curious
     

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