need help incubating waterfowl
Hi, i'm new to the forum and am actually new to incubating waterfowl eggs. i have a few pairs of fertile geese and ducks and i'm getting plenty of eggs but do not want to let the adults set the eggs. i would like to get familiar with the precise technique used to hatch waterfowl artifically. both duck and geese. I have a 3 tray dickey that i use for my chickens and would appreciate hearing the standards of hatching waterfowl from those who have had experience. i live in northwest AL so it is pretty humid. i've heard you should incubate geese horizontal versus upright and so on. do i really need a wet bulb. any help would be appreciated.
First, I'd recommend the Storey's Guide to Raising Ducks as a handy reference to waterfowl.
Most domestic duck eggs are pretty easy , geese are a bit tougher. All should be on their sides. Hand turning 2 or 3 times a day is prefered because cooling is important. Unlike a chicken, a brooding duck or goose will leave the nest for up to 30 minutes a couple times a day. I like to turn the eggs, set a timer for at least 15 min., & leave the incubator open. As Jamie mentioned in a prior post...''incubate dry, hatch wet.'' Do you have a separate machine for hatching ? They need higher humidity to hatch & the vents should be open then. Measuring isn't really necessary as long as you keep the water tray full, especially if the ambient humidity is high. Ducks take 28 days, (except Muscovies -35 ), geese-30.
yes, thanks, i do currently own a copy of that book and it is a good one. i do not yet have a seperate machine for hatching but am working on that. are you suggesting "dry hatching" meaning not putting any water in the tray until the eggs are to stop turning? cooling the eggs is the main thing i am not doing. i incubated some indian runners the same way as chickens and as of this morning 1 has hatched. i know that is the exception, not the rule. sounds like i really need another machine for waterfowl all together. thanks for you input. it was reassuring.
Dry incubating, WET hatching. That & the eventual mess of hatching that can contaminate the incubator, is a good reason for a separate hatcher. The new ''Genesis'' Hovabator is fairly inexpensive & as it is factory calibrated, there's no fussing with temperature control. It also has a removable liner for easy cleaning. Just add water & go!
Originally Posted by jrobertson