A California woman is being praised for having managed to save a cracked duck egg and for taking care of it till the duckling could survive on its own. Betsy Ross from Visalia took care of the incubation by keeping the egg close to her heart—literally. She carried the egg around with her in her bra for over a month to ensure it was kept warm and snuggly. She posted the story of how she nurtured the unmatched egg on Reddit and people were impressed by her dedication. Redditors "Conquackulated" Ross for her "Eggsellent work" and for not "ducking out of her newfound responsibility."
Speaking with Bored Panda Ross said that when she was at a local park with her husband and three kids to play pickleball, they noticed a duck's nest had been smashed up. "My kids were very upset about it, Ross said. "[They] found a lone egg with a small crack that wasn’t leaking and asked me to save it. I really didn’t think I had a chance of saving it because I’ve never hatched an egg." She couldn’t afford an incubator, so she called the local wildlife place who agreed to take the duck once it hatched. So Ross set out to do just that.
Betsy is an independent contractor doing sign language interpreting. She gets odd jobs in summer but this time, she was out of work and so she could take on the responsibility of the unmatched duck egg. "So I put the egg in my bra to keep it warm and started researching online how to hatch a duck," she stated. According to her research, the egg needed warmth and humidity. And she decided it would be best to just keep the egg where it was. "My boobs sweat in heat (gross I know)," she explained but it did the trick. She had to then just rotate the egg 4-5 times a day. She added, "I carried it in my bra for 35 days and slept with it there as well. I’m a plus size girl so it just kinda fit right between my breast."
Additionally, Ross set out to get a lamp, a plastic container, gallon baggies, a bowl of water, and a lot of tape, to make a hatching box herself. When she had to be away for a bit, her husband took over caring for the egg. "At 35 days, I started hearing faint peeps which the internet said was called pipping and its beak was pushing out of the lining," Ross said but also noticed that something was wrong. She then learned that the duckling was being shrink-wrapped by the membrane in the egg and had to prematurely crack the egg open a little so the little guy could breathe.
"He eventually got out half-way but was still connected to the yolk on the bottom of the egg," Ross said. "I was told it was because he was early but found out on Reddit it was from not being warm enough or the temperature not being stable. I got a wet paper towel and wrapped it around the shell with the yolk and put Neosporin on it so it wouldn’t get infected. Maybe not the best idea but I was scared." But the premature duckling, although weak, pulled through. Ross gave him the name Thawn, who then started taking walks and swimming in Ross' tub and mud puddles. He grew attached to Ross and would even cry when she left the house without him.
"I contacted one of my rescue connections and found a little rescue farm that is nearby," she said. "He is doing well and has a new human girl who loves him."