Just wanted to let you know we have successfully hatched 5 of the ducklings, early yesterday morning (27th) in fact, we heard one of them moving about in the incubator at 4.00am and were so fascinated that we watched the others hatch! Absolutely fascinating and they are all very very cute!!! We had two left to hatch when my husband and I had to go to work but they had broken through the shell and had a good size hole in so we were hopeful that they would be out when we got back a lunch time. I was a bit worried about them and when my husband got in, neither had progressed any further. He lifted one out and checked it but it was cold and had died. The other one he could see was still breathing but obviously couldn't get out. So, against all the advice we had read but knowing that if we didn't do something we were going to lose it, he opened the shell and put it into a margarine pot under the heat lamp. We are so pleased because it has lived and is now running around (or wobbling around!!!) with the rest of them. We could tell which one it was (who the children named 'Lucky'!!) but now it has dried off they all look the same!! They are all doing well and eating and drinking a lot!!! I can see how quickly they are going to grow.
Interestingly we have one that is slightly different to the others, it is a bit larger and has more yellow stripes on it - the others are all just the fawn colour. I was wondering why this was, could it possibly be a different sex or can't you tell that from colouring yet? It also made us wonder whether it was from a different hen? Whatever it's lovely because it’s the only one we can really tell the difference from! We are hoping to put them in a little water in a paint roller tray tonight so they can have a real dabble - they keep trying to get into the water pot!!!!
Many, many thanks for your help - hope you can see the attached photo! It's been and still is a wonderful experience, to care for the eggs and then actually see them hatch!!!