need advice on "bate and switch"!!!

Discussion in 'Ostriches, Emu, Rheas' started by ES Emus, Jan 14, 2013.

  1. My male started setting yesterday. He currently has three eggs under him. One was laid the night before and the other two are several weeks old and probably no good. I have seven eggs in the incubator that have been in there for 4-13 days. I am considering taking the eggs out of the incubator and placing them under the setting male. By doing this, I won't have to remember to turn them three times a day or worry about brooding the chicks indoors after they hatch. I will leave all of that to the setting bird. Has anybody else had any experience with this type of "incubate and switch"!?

  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    Let me preface this with, "I know nothing of emus." I woud think that he would accept more eggs, but would be concerned that it sounds as if you have eggs hatching on a staggered hatch - wouldn't it be likely that he would leave the nest after the first chicks have hatched.
  3. Yeah.. with a staggered hatch like that he would leave after he thinks the first (and only chicks in his mind) have hatched.
    Putting more eggs under a "tame" emu isn't a problem.. I know people who have done it without any trouble at all... it's the staggered hatch part that will cause issues.

    So lets assume the oldest eggs under him are bad.. the oldest incubated eggs would be next to hatch.. if they do.. he will abandon the remaining freshest eggs

    If the oldest eggs turn out to be good then all subsequent eggs would be abandoned

    so you have to ask yourself.. do you want the best chance for all eggs to hatch? If the answer is yes then you would be better off leaving the ones in the incubator where they are.. and also be prepared to "rescue" the freshest eggs under him should any of the oldest ones under him hatch.

    Normally if the eggs are due to hatch within a few days of each other the male will hang around after the first ones hatch.. especially if the remaining eggs have been talking to him
  4. Thanks!
  5. Oh well, it's a moot point any way as my male came off the nest sometime today...[​IMG]
  6. MrNappy

    MrNappy Songster

    Nov 23, 2012
    Ajax, Ontario
    OK, i don't have any emus, ostrich, chicken, etc. (only, quails and budgies) but couldn't you take those out from under him and put in incubator (all of em) and put some from incubator under him?
  7. yes, as a matter of fact, when I found the male off the nest yesterday, I removed the two newest eggs, one laid the night before and one laid three nights before and placed them in the incubaotor. I could not distinguish which of the two newest eggs were which. The egg that he had already nested on for three days will probably not hatch. That male is only in its second year of age and it is his first season as a possible "dad to be", so I am not completely surprised to find that he has not developed into the totally dedicated nesting father that I hope he is to be. I left the remaining month old eggs in the nest and will wait and see if he goes back to trying to incubate them. If he does and sticks to it, I may substitute an egg or two out of the incubator a few days before they are due to hatch so he can finish the job himself and develop his parenting skills...
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2013
    1 person likes this.

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