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This guide is about Mallard duck laid eggs. Wild ducks often will lay their eggs in your yard, on a deck, or other places in close proximity to human activity.
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We had a mallard put a nest by our back door. She has been nesting. It is now almost time for the eggs to hatch and something killed her last night. How can we save the eggs/chicks? We know they are fertilized as one egg did break a week or so back and we could see the tiny orange feet. Thank you.
Other options are to contact a local farmer who has ducks or chickens, or a vet who might know who would have an incubator to keep these eggs in till they hatch. When they are hatched, you will have to look after them, but ducks are relatively easy to raise. You might find an animal sanctuary or petting zoo or regular zoo that would take them if you are not prepared to take this on. Good luck!
To quickly improvise an incubator, you need a large carton or styrofoam box, two wired light bulbs one of 40 W and one of 100 W and a thermometer and if possible an hygrometer. Cut a square in one of the side of the box and glue or stick a piece of clear plastic so that you can see clearly inside the box without having to open it
too often. Cut three sides only of another square in the middle of the top of the box that you will use for airing the box and to regulate the temperature. Put the box next to an electric plug. Put two saucers filled with water inside the box to provide humidity (55% of humidity is needed). Get the wires of the light bulbs through the top of the box and put the two lamps on until the temperature inside the box reaches 98.6 °F. Very carefully and moving the eggs very slowly write the figures 1,2,3,4 at equal distance on the flat side of each egg. Put the eggs inside the box on a layer of hay or a blanket, or anything that will help keep the warmth. The light bulbs must be 40 centimeters away from the eggs. Lay the thermometer on the eggs in a position that let you read it through the plastic screen you made on the side of the box. The temperature must stay around 98.5 to 99.5 but never above. To regulate the temperature, use the two lamps by turning on the 40 W light only, during daytime if the general temperature is warm enough and turning the 100 W light during night time.
Refill the saucers with warm water so that it will evaporate quicker. Humidity is very important. Twice a day very carefully give half a turn to the eggs (use the figures you wrote to check that you turn all of them and to the right side). Stop turning the eggs during the two last days of incubation (incubation is 28 days ) but put more water or a third saucer of water for the humidity to reach 65 % during this two last days of incubation. You can eveen spray the eggs a little bit. Do not put the box in a place where it will not be steady or near a machine that will produce vibrations. I really hope this will work and help you !
Momma duck was sitting on her eggs last night. This morning some of the eggs are missing, some are broken and some are still intact. What might of happened to them? There are only a few shells on the ground so I don't think the other hatched.What kind of predator attacks duck eggs?
The most likely culprit is a raccoon.
Here is their predator list from
dogs and coyotes
foxes, especially red foxes
members of the weasel family, especially least and long-tailed weasels
snakes, especially rat snakes
hawks, including red-tailed, red-shouldered, and Coopers hawks
owls, most commonly great horned owls
This nest must be in an area that is easily accessible to predators and one found her nest.
This is sad but most likely the Momma duck will not return this year. Hopefully she will find a safer place next year.
Could be anything....cat, dog, racoon, snake, wessel, fox, coyote, kids.....
Mother duck returned over the weekend with 4 ducklings in tow. It is still a mystery as to what happened to the eggshells that disappeared. Two eggs never hatched so I'm assuming that they were bad eggs. thanks for sharing the list of predators.
We had a mallard duck nest in our bushes. This morning we found all the eggs thrown into the yard, cracked and eaten. We watched as the mother duck hesitantly came back to the nest, took some of the broken eggs (one at a time), and flew away with them. It was so sad. Does anyone know what the ducks do with their broken eggs?
They dispose of them. The smell of the broken eggs will lead weasels, foxes and raccoons to their nesting site.
I found six broken, empty eggs in my yard this morning, but the mother mallard is sitting on her nest. When I went near her to retieve one of the broken eggs, she became very distressed. I will wait until she leaves to get that one. Would she still sit on the nest if all the eggs are gone?
I found a baby duck this morning in a busy street by our church - no where near any place ducks would live. The baby sits easily in the palm of my hand. It is roughly half the size of a dollar bill. After an hour of looking, we went to a RV park, a good distance from our church, that had a pond with one duck. The manager said the lone duck would kill the baby and they had no other ducks. She then stated that about 2 weeks ago, a female mallard arrived there and the lone duck was mean to it, so the lady took the female home. I am wondering if it would be possible that the mallard had a nest and in this daily 100 degree weather we've had, this baby hatched from that nest? Ideas?
You'll need to take the duck to somebody that has some experience. Is there a wildlife rescue center in your area? If you call them they will come and get it.
If there is a farm nearby where someone keeps chickens they may also have some experience with ducks.
3 weeks ago a male and female mallard duck arrived in my swimming pool. Now the female swims every day and I have seen her under the bushes above the pool. Should I look for a nest with eggs or not bother her area? If there are eggs, when should the chicks show up?
By Kathy C.
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Monday was a lovely day to walk and enjoy the sunshine! I was at River Walk in Augusta, GA and spotted a lovely duck! I took this picture and I think it's good!
By Judy A.
These are churpies, 6 week old Mallard ducks. They have been domesticated as pets. They eat insects and small frogs. They love to swim and play in the pond. They will actually come to you if you say here duckie. They also like to be fed bread and cracker crumbs. Now that they are bigger one is black and one is white. They stay together all the time. My husband bought them for my daughter at the Co-OP.
By Rhonda from TN
These two Mallard drakes must have decided this muskrat house looked like a soft place to take a nap. Along our highways here in Nebraska, there are many wildlife habitat sanctuaries. This one is a popular place for ducks.
By Ann W. from Loup City, NE
Beautiful mallard duck at Burroughs Park in Tomball, TX
By Michelle from Houston, TX