When to give up - Broody Pekin - mixed species eggs


Crossing the Road
Jun 7, 2020
North FL Panhandle Region / Wiregrass
Looking for a bit of advice. I have a broody Pekin duck, age about 15 months, been sitting a nest (plastic milk crate) for weeks. Rarely leaves, but for food and water. Occasional inspection indicates at least 6, likely 8+ eggs in there, which by color and size include both pekin duck eggs and some eggs from my flock of chickens. The nest seems to be adjusted daily in the way straw is piled up, etc, I can only assume she's doing a good job of moving eggs around.

I don't **believe** there is any odor, but this nest is in a well ventilated building shared with goats, and for unimportant reasons here, I have virtually no sense of smell.

These eggs accumulated (as best I can determine) right around the week prior to my setting a new batch of (chicken) eggs in the incubator - but may have been deposited over a short period of days. The eggs in the incubator are due to hatch in six days. In theory, any chicken eggs she is brooding should hatch this week, and the duck eggs she is on should hatch within days of the incubator eggs. How long, beyond that, should I wait before clearing out the nest if nothing happens????

There is no power out there, nor can I run hundreds of feet of elctrical cord to reach it. Running the generator is impractical, and I have no small, high intensity flash light for candling. I'm hesitant to disturb the nest, otherwise, for fear she will abandon it at this late date.

I've never ha a brood bird hatch anything, I really haven't had broody birds.

So, am I over thinking it??? Timeframes please (and I know I wasn't certain with my dates, I'll consider any suggestions to be "written in mud"). THANKS!


Isaiah 5:20
Premium Feather Member
Mar 10, 2019
I'd take any chicks away from her immediately and then she should stay sitting on the duck eggs for another week so they can hatch.

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