Broken Duck Eggs

Why do you sometimes go into the duck hut and find that the duck eggs are broken? Do the ducks break the eggs, does the egg get broken when it is laid due to where it is laid, eg the egg hits the wooden nest box, does a predator get in and break the egg, does a hen break the egg, is the duck laying soft shelled eggs? All these are feasible reasons.
I received an email from Sue asking if I might know why her duck eggs keep getting broken.

” Hi Sara, Great site !,we’ve just found it and you seem the ideal person to help with our query. We live in rural Essex and keep 5 laying hens and a pair of Aylesbury’s. Recently the Duck has started laying in her night box, and although the first couple or so were small, she has sorted that out and the eggs are the right size now. Our question is, for the last couple of day’s the egg has been broken, the shell’s are not soft, all our birds run free all day, is it possible that the Drake is doing this as he is to say the least, “the govenor !! ” over all that dares come into our garden even Ralph my daughters Jack Russell. We think that she may be thinking about building a nest as she keeps dissapearing into hedges and hidey places, but for now the night box seems to be the place, any ideas ? Regards Sue….”

This was my response:
Hi Sue,

Glad you like the site and thanks for your message.
It is not unusual that your duck lays in her night box as they lay their eggs usually
early morning.
I wouldn’t have thought that it would be the drake who breaks the eggs although I could
be wrong.
Do the hens and ducks stay in the same hut at night, if so it could be the hens as I have
experience of this myself. My hens and ducks live in the same hut at night and sometimes
the hens will braks the shell of the duck eggs if they don’t have any hen eggs to peck
at. Hens do like to egg eat so this is not uncommon.

If you duck is thinking of sitting then the night box sounds lke it would be a good place
for her to sit. You could encourage her to sit there by placing a pot egg or two in the
night box and then she will continue to lay the eggs. You could take out the duck eggs
and store them correctly for up to 7 days and then put them back under the duck once you
have enough and this would stop the eggs getting broken. My pot egg is actually plastic
but looks just like the duck eggs.

Just to let you know that I have a duck forum which is very popular with members
returning daily to talk about their ducks and ask for advice. You may find it of
interest. http://farmingfriends.com/forums/forum.php?id=5 I will add your enquiry there
and see what the other members say.

Kind regards

Sara @ farmingfriends

Let me know if you have come across duck eggs getting broken and the reason why thet were broken.

If you keep ducks or are interested in keeping ducks then visit the farmingfriends duck forum for the latest chat about ducks and then check out the khaki campbell duck eggs for hatching sales page.

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