NEW TO DUCKS--AGAIN

Discussion in 'Waterfowl' started by danathome, Sep 17, 2020.

  1. danathome

    danathome Active Member

    277
    190
    43
    I had a flock of mallards about 50 years ago and have missed having ducks. This spring I bought a few call duck eggs and managed to raise four drakes and a single hen. I have been waiting 22 weeks and today I found this out under the pines and brush.

    ducknest.jpg
     
    Poultry Judge likes this.
  2. Poultry Judge

    Poultry Judge Moderator Staff Member

    1,267
    497
    83

  3. robin416

    robin416 Administrator Staff Member

    15,227
    2,771
    113
    OK, I'm going to be watching for that nest to grow.
     
    Poultry Judge likes this.
  4. danathome

    danathome Active Member

    277
    190
    43
    For me, it's very exciting. The duck could not have picked a worse place for a nest;predator wise. I'll be collecting the eggs as they are laid and replace them with dummy eggs. My serama hens will be good foster hens even though they can only brood three duck eggs. Then when the duck has laid her full clutch I'll try to get her to start over in a safe location. I figure if I intervene now she will likely stop laying and with only one call duck hen I want to get ducklings from her as soon as possible.
     
    Poultry Judge likes this.
  5. robin416

    robin416 Administrator Staff Member

    15,227
    2,771
    113
    I'm surprised the Serama girls can even cover three eggs even the though the calls are small.

    Let's hope that you get all girls this time around. Having that big of an imbalance makes life rough on everyone, the human keeper included.
     
    Poultry Judge likes this.
  6. danathome

    danathome Active Member

    277
    190
    43
    The call eggs are about double the size of the serama; like a typical bantam egg. Yes, hope the ducklings are all girls; totally not going to happen.
     
    robin416 and Poultry Judge like this.
  7. Poultry Judge

    Poultry Judge Moderator Staff Member

    1,267
    497
    83
  8. robin416

    robin416 Administrator Staff Member

    15,227
    2,771
    113
    Don't feel bad, out of 17 eggs I got 15 males. Yep, it happens. Usually when we need girls really bad.
     
  9. danathome

    danathome Active Member

    277
    190
    43
    That's pretty poor luck. I didn't get a second egg today. The hen sat on the nest for a long time, but when I went out later only the dummy egg was in the nest. May be tomorrow.
     
  10. robin416

    robin416 Administrator Staff Member

    15,227
    2,771
    113
    Come on girl, lay more little girl eggs.
     
  11. danathome

    danathome Active Member

    277
    190
    43
    PLEEEAAAASSSSSEEEEEEEEEE
     
    robin416 likes this.
  12. danathome

    danathome Active Member

    277
    190
    43
    Two eggs now and hoping for a third today; then they'll be slipped under a brooding serama. The breeder I got my original eggs from says it's likely the first eggs will not be viable. I do hope she is wrong.
     
  13. robin416

    robin416 Administrator Staff Member

    15,227
    2,771
    113
    That makes sense. I noticed the same thing with my Silkies when they would first start laying.
     
  14. danathome

    danathome Active Member

    277
    190
    43
    Two days in a row and no new egg. I put the two eggs under a broody.
     
  15. robin416

    robin416 Administrator Staff Member

    15,227
    2,771
    113
    Well, two is better than none.

    Do ducks have a laying season like Guineas do?
     
  16. danathome

    danathome Active Member

    277
    190
    43
    Wild type do-mallards do, but a number of our domestic breeds nest any old time; like call ducks. It's her first nest and irregular laying is normal; I'm just overanxious as if something were to happen before I get some ducklings that are hens I may be out of luck. No calls around here-the mail is not trustworthy-and the cost-they're not cheap.
     
    Poultry Judge likes this.
  17. robin416

    robin416 Administrator Staff Member

    15,227
    2,771
    113
    Have you roped all of those excess boys in to their own spot?

    Then essentially we've domesticated them to the point they no longer make life easier during the cold months by not laying year round.
     
    Poultry Judge likes this.
  18. Poultry Judge

    Poultry Judge Moderator Staff Member

    1,267
    497
    83
    Good point! Very very true for a bunch of breeds here!
     
  19. danathome

    danathome Active Member

    277
    190
    43
    The excess boys do not cause a problem. Sonny, the hen's main squeeze, does not let the other drakes get too close. Cher, the hen, is on her nest as I type this so hopefully there will be a third egg today-yeah! Which will immediately join the other two eggs under Sadie, the serama broody.

    Some duck breeds, like some chicken breeds, have been selectively bred just to lay eggs; 200-300 eggs a year. Like leghorns, they no longer have a broody instinct. We don't think of duck egg production, but in some countries duck eggs are used as we use chicken eggs.

    Muscovies, will also nest at any time of the year when conditions are right. Spring is the main season for even domestic breeds, like calls, but nesting can happen in any month. Here in TN my flock, overall, keeps hatching chicks year around, My hen turkey is hatching today. Out of season; not really all that unusual. Last December I watched my Yokohama hen out in the yard with her chicks. It was very humorous watching the chicks run around trying to catch snowflakes.
     
    Donna McDuckface likes this.
  20. Poultry Judge

    Poultry Judge Moderator Staff Member

    1,267
    497
    83