It's a waiting game now - hatching

Techitude

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Please do a bit of research beforehand in case one of your chicks has a disability. We hatched some guinea fowl at home and one had a deformed leg. We had to make a splint for it. It took us too long to sort it out and it died because it could not stand and feed itself. It was heartbreaking but you can learn from our mistake. I used to breed zebra finches and one of those was born with a deformed leg, luckily it was ok but these things happen!
Don't worry, I've been breeding, hatching and showing fowl of all varieties for over 12 years. I've reared youngsters with a variety of disabilities (including blindness, splay legs, misaligned beaks etc) so am fully prepared, never lost one post-hatch yet!
 
We had a pretty horrifying experience too! Of the 12 partridge eggs, 10 hatched but only 3 survived :( :( the kit we were given just didn't seem suitable, we had several of them drown in the water bowl because they couldn't get out of it once they'd got in to drink. We tried filling it only a tiny bit and having small stones in there but they still were floundering around. Plus the straw they gave us was so thick it was damaging their legs :eek:
In commercial units they use thick paper as bedding because straw is wrong for them and they would eat sawdust if they had it. It does look like you were given the wrong kit and advice :( :(
 
We incubated 10 chick eggs last year during lock down at home. Of the nine who hatched 7 were male and two female. All lovely until they get into their teens and then the males metamorphize into ankle peckers and kick boxers.. One of the hens has now gone broody.
 
Must admit ,the equipment we were supplied with for our project was woefully inadequate too. The box we were given to house them was too small for 10 chicks and would get very hot with the heat lamp so I moved one of our large garden cloches with the lid removed indoors, made a chicken wire top too stop them escaping and put the heat lamp on only at night. I bedded them on dust free sawdust from the farm and fed them on chick feed we raise the peacock chicks on. They thrived, both lots from different years.
 

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This is the set up I have for ours (this was a mock up so not attached together properly, it's flat packed at the moment waiting for hatch day)
They're click together panels with solid plastic sides, you can make it in to any size/shape you want.
I was planning on having the electric hen heat source in the corner (yellow square), newspaper down under the whole thing then puppy pads where the white box is and under the gratnell tray (to soak up excess water). Gratnell will be the paddling pool and the food will be at the opposite end (green blob) to avoid them soaking it after swims. This arrangement might have to be adjusted slightly if the chick hatches too.

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We did notice that duckling are basically sh*t machines! I was forever cleaning out. My old dog loved them though when I took them home.
Despite all the crap, would love to do it again.
 
This is the set up I have for ours (this was a mock up so not attached together properly, it's flat packed at the moment waiting for hatch day)
They're click together panels with solid plastic sides, you can make it in to any size/shape you want.
I was planning on having the electric hen heat source in the corner (yellow square), newspaper down under the whole thing then puppy pads where the white box is and under the gratnell tray (to soak up excess water). Gratnell will be the paddling pool and the food will be at the opposite end (green blob) to avoid them soaking it after swims. This arrangement might have to be adjusted slightly if the chick hatches too.

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This looks great! Our set up was far inferior to this when we did it and we ended up stopping. They were meant to get taken back to the farm shortly after hatching and the teacher running it never arranged it in time so they would grow far too big for their enclosure. Also had a few drown in their water and other deaths which were awful and really put me off ever doing it again.
 
Have you candled then t see how many you might have?

We would love to do that here, but not allowed...boring f*rts that they are. They even went so far as to fill the pond in, not sure if that was due to us continually asking and saying they could go in there or not.

We are after chicks now as some staff would have them at home for eggs, still no joy.

Hope the hatching goes well.
 
Have you candled then t see how many you might have?

We would love to do that here, but not allowed...boring f*rts that they are. They even went so far as to fill the pond in, not sure if that was due to us continually asking and saying they could go in there or not.

We are after chicks now as some staff would have them at home for eggs, still no joy.

Hope the hatching goes well.
You can also do it using a light box and sometimes a bright LED torch works as well. Weighing the eggs daily can give an indication, if they increase in mass then yo have developing chicks inside. My uncle was a chicken farmer and this is how he did it to ensure the hens weren't sitting on barren eggs.
 

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Have you candled then t see how many you might have?

Yes, been candling them each week, that's how we know we've only got 2 duck and 1 chicken egg developing. We've got two of the proper candlers. The students love the candling and seeing the embryos (or lack of them!). This week they saw the two ducklings wriggling about too :D
 

Techitude

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You can also do it using a light box and sometimes a bright LED torch works as well. Weighing the eggs daily can give an indication, if they increase in mass then yo have developing chicks inside. My uncle was a chicken farmer and this is how he did it to ensure the hens weren't sitting on barren eggs.

Eggs should decrease in mass as they develop due to the moisture loss through the shell which causes an increase in the size of the air sac.
 
Don't worry, I've been breeding, hatching and showing fowl of all varieties for over 12 years. I've reared youngsters with a variety of disabilities (including blindness, splay legs, misaligned beaks etc) so am fully prepared, never lost one post-hatch yet!
Techitude, I've got a question for you. Our ducklings are now 3.5 - 4 weeks old, so we thought it was time to allow them to go out of the aviary into the main enclosure with the rest of the ducks and chickens. Only trouble was, as soon as he realised that the aviary gate was open, the drake was straight in there trying to mate with the ducklings, so we've had to shut them back in. I assume that he's trying to exert his authority over them, but he seems to be concentrating on one of them. We don't want to risk getting any of them injured, but we will eventually have to let them out. How would you go about introducing ducklings into the rest of the flock? Would you wait until the ducklings are bigger - they are starting to lose their down and get their feathers. Or would you shut the drake in an aviary until the ducklings are bigger?
 

Techitude

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Techitude, I've got a question for you. Our ducklings are now 3.5 - 4 weeks old, so we thought it was time to allow them to go out of the aviary into the main enclosure with the rest of the ducks and chickens. Only trouble was, as soon as he realised that the aviary gate was open, the drake was straight in there trying to mate with the ducklings, so we've had to shut them back in. I assume that he's trying to exert his authority over them, but he seems to be concentrating on one of them. We don't want to risk getting any of them injured, but we will eventually have to let them out. How would you go about introducing ducklings into the rest of the flock? Would you wait until the ducklings are bigger - they are starting to lose their down and get their feathers. Or would you shut the drake in an aviary until the ducklings are bigger?

Obviously you want to ensure none of them get hurt so if the drake is persistent in his obsession with them then yes keeping them apart is the best idea. It would be nice for the ducklings to be able to interact with the older ducks and have that bit more space so perhaps keeping the drake in the aviary for a few hours while the ducklings explore, then swapping them over again might be the best way to go until the ducklings are more mature (they're still very young). Once the ducklings are pretty much fully feathered (except their wings which take a while to come in fully) then they should be okay to mix, but I'd keep a close eye on them to make sure the drake isn't causing any issues again.
 
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