signs of a tendency toward broodiness?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by hfchristy, Dec 14, 2012.

  1. hfchristy

    hfchristy Chillin' With My Peeps

    233
    1
    91
    Apr 10, 2012
    My ducks started laying this week.
    Two days ago, what I assume was the day the first egg was laid, the ducks would NOT leave their house for anything. I gave up and locked them back in for another couple hours. They still wouldn't leave, but I was going out for the day, so I dragged two of them out and the rest followed.
    Yesterday, they hopped out like they always do, leaving an egg right by the door where I couldn't help but see it. I realized the "dummy" egg was missing, and found a hollowed out corner of bedding with the dummy AND a real egg. Probably from the day before.
    Today, most of the ducks rushed out of the house, but one lingered until it was clear the others really weren't waiting for her. Found two eggs today - a bright white Pekin one out in the open, and a little greenish one in a carefully formed nest. The first two eggs were both greenish, and the lingering duck hatched from a greenish egg, so I'm pretty sure that she's the one that was holding things up the first day, too.

    Anyone have any experience of whether this is something ducks often do when they're new to laying then get over, or if it's like to progress to full-scale broodiness?
    Are mixed-breed ducks more prone to broodiness? She seems more "wild" than the purebred ducks we hatched with her, so it wouldn't surprise me.

    Also wondering... is there any correlation in mixed-breed ducks between the color eggs a duck hatches from and the ones she'll lay? (Can that gene come from either parent, or is always the mother?) Her dad was a Cayuga, so I'd been hoping that we might have a shot at black eggs, but it appears she got the Australian Spotted eggshell gene instead.

    Christy
     
  2. jdywntr

    jdywntr Chillin' With My Peeps

    3,215
    140
    243
    Oct 31, 2009
    Somerville, AL
    Someone may have just laid the egg so was hesitant to leave, they may have seen something that scared them or thought they saw something. Who knows with ducks.
    It is unlikely that a duck would go broody so quickly over so few eggs. Mine act similar to chickens (if you are familiar). They don't leave the nest, get upset if I go in etc.
    The eggs by the door is typical of new layers. They tend to drop them whereever. If someone made a nest in the corner and "stole" the fake egg, that may be your best bet for a broody. If you want someone to set then leave the eggs, if you don't take them away.

    I have only had one mixed duck and it was male so no idea. Egg color and broodiness are breed specific. Though there are no guarantees that a broody breed will be or a non setter won't decide to set.
     
  3. hfchristy

    hfchristy Chillin' With My Peeps

    233
    1
    91
    Apr 10, 2012
    I know she's not actually broody. Just wondering whether hanging around the nest, keeping half an eye on the egg she's laid, seeming to look for it when she comes back... if that sort of behavior has any connection to whether a duck is likely to go broody later on. She's the one that made both nests, and rolled the dummy egg in with her egg, too.

    I'm convinced the ducks are insane. After the first hard freeze, they wouldn't go near their pool for a week. Could barely convince them to try the new water dish either. What duck refuses water?!?
    But being freaked out enough about a danger to not leave their house for hours... that's odd, even for them. I really think that she insisted she wasn't going anywhere, and they weren't going without her.

    I'm not looking to hatch out any ducklings (though my son was so crestfallen when he realized we were going to EAT these eggs and not turn them into more cute little fluff balls that it's tempting) because we have such a motley mix of breeds that finding them homes would be tough. Then again, I have a friend who IS hoping to breed her flock, and might give us some eggs to hatch for her if we end up with a broody...
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by