SHE DID IT! Now I have questions!

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Nebraskagirl, Feb 24, 2013.

  1. Nebraskagirl

    Nebraskagirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 12, 2012
    My Welsh Harlequin laid her first egg ever yesterday! [​IMG][​IMG] [​IMG]

    The shell was nice and hard and it is so pretty! This morning when my husband checked she had not laid one. Is this normal for ducks to do that? Also, I want ducklings so should I leave the eggs in the duck house? She shares the box with one drake (also a WH) so I question whether or not that is a good idea. How do I know she is sitting? I have heard WH make great moms and will sit on eggs.
     
  2. jdywntr

    jdywntr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It will take her a week or so to work out the kinks. First eggs are usually small and not fertile. I would make her a nest, if she hasn't and leave the eggs there but mark them so that you can remove the first ones. I use a sharpie. After a week or so, I'd check an egg to make sure that they are fertile. You can crack it open and look for a bullseye shape on the yolk (search "bullseye" on BYC and you'll find pics). After that, you can leave eggs and see if she goes broody.

    You will know she is broody when she doesn't leave the nest except for 1-2 times a day. Mine ususally start setting at night and then a few days later will stay during the day.
     
  3. Nebraskagirl

    Nebraskagirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I just went out to check again to see if there is an egg. No egg, but she trying like heck to make a nest. There is an area in the hay that looks "nesty" (is that a word? lol) in a circular shape. She "rooms" with our drake at night so is that going to interfere with her laying eggs (sitting on eggs?) At this time I cannot separate them so that is not an option (they are also very good friends. They have to see each other at all times or they start quacking loudly.)
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2013
  4. jdywntr

    jdywntr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 31, 2009
    Somerville, AL
    It depends. Some drakes may still try to mate with hens when they are setting. Some drakes will also kill ducklings once they hatch. Your best bet is to keep an eye on them and have a back up plan just in case.
     
  5. Nebraskagirl

    Nebraskagirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 12, 2012
    I was planning on separating them once they hatch. I just can't separate them right now. It is just the two of them and they get along really well. He is very gentle to her and they get along really well. I just will have to keep my fingers crossed.

    Also another question: Since the egg appears nice and firm, do I have to worry about crushed oyster shell? I have never put any out ever, but hear a lot of people do. I give them flock feeder. I also don't offer any grit (they free range so I figure they get enough of that type when they forage around under supervision.)
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2013

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