On the day of setting, put eggs in incubator, close the doors and allow the incubator to reach operating temperature. Vents should be opened to their maximum setting by the end of the hatch. At 25 days after setting (Pekin eggs), the eggs are transferred to hatching trays, and if eggs are hatched in a separate machine, moved to the hatcher. Common duck eggs should lose about 14% of their weight at time of setting by 25 days. Laura says: April 30, 2018 at 3:41 pm. Candle and remove eggs with dead embryos. You also know about differences between chicken and duck eggs and hatchlings. Eggs must be turned, either automatically or by hand, a minimum of 4 times a day. At about seven days after setting, candle the eggs and remove any eggs that are infertile (clear) or have dead germ (cloudy). Place the big ends towards the window. As the duckling develops inside the egg there is a loss of water from the egg and an increase in the size of the air cell. Candle and remove eggs with dead embryos. Weight loss can also be used as a guide. As time passes over the 4 weeks or so of incubation, the moisture loss is making the egg lighter so we have a weight loss over the incubation period. Since duck eggs are larger than chicken eggs, setting trays must be designed to accommodate their larger size. Your email address will not be published. How Comfortable Are You with Duck & Goose Down Production? Start this about 10-14 days into incubation and stop when you raise the humidity to prepare for hatching. If the incubator is not already in operation, start the incubator and allow the temperature and humidity to stabilize a day or two before setting eggs. Remove ducklings from the hatcher when 90-95% of them are dry. Reply. Reading relative humidity is one of the more difficult things to do in a small incubator. When larger numbers of duck eggs are to be hatched, large commercial incubators (setters) and hatchers are normally used. The following two tabs change content below. If the air sack is too big, your incubator humidity is too low. Feed and water should be available for the broody duck and for the ducklings when they hatch. Humidity is controlled in order to prevent unnecessary loss of egg moisture. Duck eggs require a little more humidity than chicken eggs do. As the hatch nears completion gradually lower the temperature and humidity so that by the end of the hatch the temperature is at 36.1°C (97°F), and the humidity is at 70% (90°F wet bulb). He keeps Cream Legbar chickens, Silver Sebright bantams and hybrid layers for eggs, Abacot Ranger ducks, Brecon Buff geese and some quail. Tim is the founder of the poultrykeeper website and lives in Herefordshire, UK. So what is the answer? During the last three days (the "lock-down" period), the humidity level should be increased to between 70-80%. Whenever possible, store eggs at about 55°F (13°C) and 75% of relative humidity. You also need to make sure that you provide enough ventilation so that the air keeps circulating. The ideal humidity level for hatching eggs is still being debated among experts, but many agree that it should not fall below 25% or above 60% between setting and three days prior to hatching. Email: ducklab@cornell.edu, COVID-19: The AHDC is open. Some eggs lost weight far quicker than others so when graphed, weight loss against days of incubation, there were different lines, each heading for a different percentage weight loss at the end. If you can’t weigh eggs and run 3 different incubators (and lets face it, this was a little extreme!) Best of luck hatching your duck eggs! Have you ever tried drying washing on a damp day? For best results, set eggs within 1-3 days from the time they were laid. Basic procedures and conditions for hatching duck eggs are as follows. There is an average loss of about 3% hatchability for eggs stored 7 days before setting, and about 10% loss for those stored 14 days. The trickiest part of incubating is finding the right humidity levels. The problem sounds like you have very low humidity for ducks. After spending the last 4 years hatching ducklings, I have kept accurate records of humidity (more recently using the recording software of the RCOM 20 Pro USB ) and I have kept records of the weight of each egg at different times during the incubation period, in a search to find the ‘right’ humidity for duck eggs. For a small number of eggs, storage in a cellar may suffice. Chicks have different humidity needs throughout different parts of the hatch. If eggs are stored for a while before they are set, they should be stored at a temperature and humidity level that will minimize deterioration of the egg. Duck eggs will hatch under a broody hen so surely 50% RH is the right sort of humidity to maintain? The image to the right shows you the ideal air sac size at different stages of incubation in days, if you follow this, you shouldn’t go too far wrong. Final Duck Egg Hatching Tips. Spray the eggs and close the incubator for the remaining days. HB) pencil to mark the extent of air sac development on the egg shell and compare it to the egg above. Egg shells are porous and moisture loss through the shell causes the egg to lose weight. Humidity in Hatching. Duck eggs may be hatched naturally by placing them under a broody duck or even a broody chicken hen. For years, I read articles written by well-respected authors who advised everything from 60% relative humidity (RH) to adding no water at all to the incubator in order to have a successful waterfowl hatch. To overcome this, whilst incubating mixed batches of duck eggs, I tried running 3 incubators, one at 65%RH, one at 45%RH and one at 35% or as low as I could get it (it was difficult to maintain due to the humidity of the outside air). Companion Animal Hospital in Ithaca, NY for cats, dogs, exotics, and wildlife, Equine and Nemo Farm Animal Hospitals in Ithaca, NY for horses and farm animals, Cornell Ruffian Equine Specialists, on Long Island for every horse, Ambulatory and Production Medicine for service on farms within 30 miles of Ithaca, NY, Animal Health Diagnostic Center New York State Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory, Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine Ithaca, New York 14853-6401. Pekin duck eggs are kept in a setter for 25 days and then transferred on the 25th day to a hatcher where they remain until they hatch on the 28th day. Required fields are marked *. Set the temperature at 37.5°C (99.5°F) and relative humidity at 55% (84.5°F on wet bulb thermometer). Duck eggs also need slightly more humidity than chicken eggs, so hatching both at the same time is generally not advised. As moisture is lost from the egg, the air sack at the rounded end increases in size, causing air to be drawn into the sack. The ideal temperature for incubating duck eggs is 37.5 °C with a humidity of 55% (you can measure the humidity with the help of a wet bulb thermometer). Much of the information available on incubating and hatching chicken eggs can be applied to ducks, as long as the important differences between these two species are taken into account. The conclusion of what humidity to use to hatch duck eggs was that it varies although, the humidity requirement for most of the duck eggs I hatched during my tests was at the lower end, closer to 40% – most of my failures were because the humidity was too high. Most small egg incubators (those that hold less than 40 eggs) have a well or two that holds water and generally don t have an easy way to measure humidity. Make sure the humidity is correct for hatching duck eggs. This air sack provides the first few breaths the duckling takes before it pips through the shell, starting to breathe air through the hole it has created. So what did this tell me? There is another image of a chicken and duck egg at the bottom of our page on candling eggs that might also be useful to you too. Hatching duck eggs is just as easy as as hatching out baby chicks!
2020 humidity for hatching duck eggs