Incubating and raising ducks
I am ordering Storey's book on raising ducks (as suggested in a post I searched). Please forgive my lack of knowledge and terminology at this point.
My uncle lives about 50 minutes away from where I live. He has Pekin ducks and the large ducks that resemble mallards. He said his mallard looking female lays an egg everyday, while the Pekins are more random layers. They do not build nests but just pop the eggs out on the bare ground.
I am endlessly amused by his ducks. I live on a farm and have decided where I would like to keep some ducks. I am going to try to incubate my uncle's eggs in the late spring. How quickly must the eggs be gathered from the bare ground and put into the incubator before they are no longer viable? I know you need to preheat your incubator to get it to constant temp prior to putting the eggs in. However, can I have it preheated at my house, go to my uncle's, gather an egg, and somehow transport 50 minutes back to my house to my incubator? Is there a way to keep it warm enough just for a couple of hours before I get it into the preheated incubator?
Okay, other question. I need a suggestion on incubators. I was going to purchase the $50 or so Hovabator but it has mixed reviews and temps in my house are never constant (old farm house). Would I be better off spending abouit $125 on the Hovabator genesis model that maintains 99 degrees automatically? I really can't go much more expensive than that.