Indian Runner gone broody!?


In the Brooder
8 Years
Jan 23, 2012
North Pole, Alaska
HI All!
OK, so I have indian runner ducks and previously have only hatched eggs in an incubator. None of my females have EVER acted broody at all even a little bit until now, and I have heard that runners usually aren't very good mothers, so I never looked too much into letting them hatch naturally. Now one of my ladies lately is always on her egg when I come to take it in the morning and doesn't seem too happy about having to leave it. So realizing today that she seemed to actually be going broody, I decided to let her keep an egg and see if she would sit on it and she has stayed with it all day except to eat and drink once in the morning. SO, I want to let her try and hatch a few eggs, but since I only have a small flock and am trying to collect some now for hatching in an incubator I will only want to risk a couple. SO NOW WHAT?

Should I wait to see if she keeps sitting this one egg for a few days before saving some others to put under her all at once? If so, then what do I do with the first egg if it's already developing? What would happen if I let her just keep whatever eggs are layed in the next two days and sit on all of them (so they would be a few days apart in age)?? She is currently in a breeding pen with only one other female and a drake, so there are only 2 eggs a day for hatching, and it will take me a while to save up enough for a decent clutch size, but I was thinking maybe just let her sit like 4-5 and see what happens... What do you guys think??

ALSO, the reason I have been waiting till now to collect eggs is because my ducks are still molting a little bit (it seems to take forever with this guys, don't know if its just the breed or if ducks just take a long time??) and I figured the eggs would be better quality if I waited till they were completely past the molt. BUT, they are mostly done and have continued laying eggs more or less consistently throughout and if I wait much longer the babies will be young going into winter... will the eggs collected from them now be good ones?? I guess I'm kinda anxious to get started =D

THANKS in advance for any advice!!!
Well, in case anyone's interested...
I decided to save up a clutch of 7 eggs in addition to the one she was sitting, and I gave them to her all at once. Three of them ended up being infertile. She sat on them faithfully for a little over a week, and then started leaving the nest for hours at a time. I decided to take the eggs from her today, since they were cool to the touch the last several times I checked on them and she has been squawking like crazy to get back to the other ducks. One of them stopped developing, so that leaves me with 4 eggs in the incubator, with one due to hatch a week before the others (ugh!). When I put them in the incubator this morning they were cold and showing no movement, but I just checked them again tonight and there was movement in all of them

So little miss broody was very happy to be back with her flock, even though she was totally mobbed by the drakes, haha. It was pretty funny to watch; she didn't seem to care so I don't feel bad. The weird and interesting thing - she is one of a couple of my ducks that has been suffering from foot sores, something similar to bumble foot, although it's a bit different I think. Anyway, hers were kinda nasty before and I hadn't checked on them in a couple of weeks since she was broody and I didn't want to disturb her. Well when I checked her out today they are gone and completely healed up!! Maybe all that sitting around off her feet did her good. I have tried soaking and wrapping and all that jazz and it has never worked with any of my ducks. Weird.

Well anyways, cheers.
Glad to hear her feet are doing okay. Those Runners can be something. I guess they haven't got the memo that they're not suppose to go broody - Pekins either lol. I've had 3 broody runners this year and 4 broody pekins. Two of the runners were very dedicated to their eggs (one of them just had her eggs to hatch this week), the other was an okay broody, but a very bad mama. Hope the eggs hatch for you
Thanks! All four are currently still looking good. That's awesome you were able to have your runners hatch out some babies for you! I bet they are so cute running around together. I hope I get a chance to try again with natural brooding sometime. But then again, it's pretty cool to be there to watch them hatch in the incubator

The foot thing is weird - Several of my ducks have them, and sometimes they get better and almost go away, and then in one of them they are just getting progressively worse. I tried treating them as bumble foot as described in many posts on here, but it didn't help at all. I will probably have to cull her so she's not suffering
. I don't know if it could be bumble foot since they sometimes go away, and there's never any swelling or heat in the foot, just big ole nasty bally things on the bottom, which sometimes crack and bleed.

Anyways, I digress. I just checked out your blog - Your turkey is so beautiful!! The colors are just awesome.
Glad that all four eggs are still doing good. It is so sweet to see mamas with their babies, but I still love hatching them out for myself lol. But it's so easy to get addicted to it.

I'm so sorry to hear that about your ducks. We haven't had to deal with bumblefoot, yet, but I've heard it can be so rough on the birds (& their owners)
I read on here somewhere about it sometimes happening in clusters. Can't remember exactly what the info was, but the birds would show symptoms and then they would clear up, then later it would reoccur again. I hope it clears up for good for you
But if not, it sounds like you've done everything you can and that's what matters.

Well, thank you. He may be pretty to look at, but oh my gosh, he can be a butt sometimes
But he's good at his job, too (keeping away hawks), so he's worth putting up with lol.
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Well, thank you. He may be pretty to look at, but oh my gosh, he can be a butt sometimes
But he's good at his job, too (keeping away hawks), so he's worth putting up with lol.
Haha, that's good. Looks pretty big and intimidating, I'll bet he keeps stray cats, dogs, kids, etc. away as well =) We see a lot of hawks and eagles around here, but so far none have bothered us, thank goodness. So far the only issue is foxes and neighborhood dogs - nothing that a stout fence won't fix I think, and we are working on that.

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