Wednesday, May 17, 2017

::hatching out some baby ducks::

I have been filling my time in the rental house making a few impulsive purchases in the animal department.  I had to sell my goats because my brother inlaw's dog killed one.  The goats have to live at his farm for now.  So - I quickly sold the remaining two off.  Not having any animals at our house right now is killing me.  I knew I liked having the animals around, but it is really hard for me to maintain a positive attitude without some creatures around.  In January I bought 12 chickens.  Then in March I lost my mind and bought three Pekin ducklings.  Then have since flown away, which is the usual routine with these guys.  They hang out for awhile but then they figure out they can fly for real and they go.  Then in late March I seriously was an idiot and bought six more chickens.  Now I have 5 Americana hens (lays blue eggs), 1 Americana Rooster, 6 barred rock hens, 2 Austrolop hens, 2 light Brahma hens, and 2 white Silkies (gender unknown).  WHAT THE HELL AM I DOING???  Lucky for me we are surrounded with family here so I will have plenty of people to eat all the eggs.

Yet - I still need to see some baby animals be born.  It's part of spring and I needed it this year.  I talked Josh into getting me an inexpensive incubator off Amazon and I bought 7 Cayuga duck eggs from a duck breeder I know on facebook.  The kids and I carefully researched how to hatch them.  We candled the eggs, after learning how from You Tube.  We counted days and crossed out fingers.  They are supposed to hatch in 26 days.  Ours hatched in 24!  Which meant I was out of town (with Josh and the two middle kiddos) and Josh's poor mother ended up babysitting Quinn and some ducklings that were still hatching!!  Thank god she and Josh's dad are such good sports.

Of the seven eggs 5 eggs hatched.  On day 28 we cleaned out the incubator of the two remaining eggs.  I watched them for a long time to see if they were moving around at all or showed any signs of hatching.  I was so freaked out to take them out of the incubator.  Lily and I wanted to see what was inside.  I did not take any pictures but inside both eggs where two dead ducklings that looked like the where fully developed when they died inside the shell.  Both eggs where totally intact.  I've been researching online but I am going to ask the breeder if she has some tips I can do next time to improve things.

Still - five out of seven is such a good hatch rate that you can only call it beginners luck!   I got to see three of them hatch out all the way and it was a magical experience.  Those babies are so strong and tough.  All five babies are doing such a good job!  They love to swim and are very vigorous.

They are five days old right now, so they are still very fragile - but I am so excited about having them here.  My plan is to keep them here at our rental for at least the first two weeks.  Then they will transition to the garage here to be watched closely for a few weeks.

No comments:

Post a Comment


Related Posts with Thumbnails