Mandarin ducks are colourful, highly unique ducks that hail from East Asia and Japan. If one of these ducks has laid eggs on your property and then abandoned them, it stands to reason that you would want to save them and hatch the babies. To do so, grab an incubator or some common household items and get started.
- Skill level:
Things you need
- Box (cardboard or wood)
- 220-watt bulb
- Spray bottle
Set up a box if you don't have an incubator. Use a small wood or cardboard box that fits all the eggs. Put shavings, straw or blankets inside the box to support the mandarin duck eggs. Place the eggs in your box or incubator.
Place the box or incubator in a safe place where it will be protected from traffic, drafts and direct sunshine. It's important that you maintain a consistent temperature for the mandarin duck eggs; drafts or sunshine can cause large changes in air humidity and temperature.
Turn on the thermometer and temperature control if you're using an incubator. If you're using a homemade set-up, put a lamp with a 220-watt bulb next to the box and turn it on. Use this lamp to keep the mandarin duck eggs warm. Mandarin duck eggs should be kept at 36.7 to 37.2 degrees Celsius throughout their incubation.
Turn mandarin duck eggs over three, five or seven times a day. When you turn them, spray them with warm water to maintain their humidity. All eggs require this movement and humidity in order to hatch.
"Candle" the eggs to monitor the development of the baby birds inside. Pick the egg up and hold a flashlight to it, to light up the contents. You should be able to see a baby bird growing if an egg is viable. Mandarin duck eggs will begin to hatch within 28 days of being laid.
Tips and warnings
- Mandarin ducks are symbols of respect, kindness and marital fidelity in the Orient.
- Even the most carefully incubated eggs might not hatch.
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