That’s lucky… a Waitrose ducky! Teacher, 26, hatches a baby bird from a box of free-range eggs

  • Lauren Barton, 26, bought six eggs and put three into an incubator for 28 days
  • She had to turn the eggs three times a day every day during the incubation
  • After 28 ‘laborious’ days a duckling hatched and Lauren named it Darwin

When a teacher bought a box of duck eggs from Waitrose she didn’t intend to eat them – she wanted to hatch them.

Lauren Barton, 26, got the idea from a news story about a woman who had hatched ducklings from supermarket eggs.

She bought a six-pack of free-range Clarence Court duck eggs from Waitrose – the same brand Charli Lello used to hatch three ducklings last month.

When Lauren Barton (pictured) bought a box of duck eggs from Waitrose she didn’t intend to eat them – she wanted to hatch them

Miss Barton put three eggs in an incubator she bought from Amazon and, after 28 ‘laborious’ days, a duckling emerged. Miss Barton, an English teacher from Ipswich, named it Darwin and said it is just like having a dog.

‘He’s gorgeous. He’s so friendly, he loves us completely,’ she said. ‘He’s like a little dog – he’s so loyal and just follows us around everywhere and wants attention all the time.’

But the experiment wasn’t as simple as putting the eggs in the incubator and waiting for them to hatch. 

‘The incubation was actually quite laborious, it’s quite intense,’ Miss Barton said. 

‘The eggs spend a month in the incubator, but you have to turn them three times a day every day, and then you have to mist the eggs towards the end to keep their temperature right.’

Miss Barton had to wait 48 hours for Darwin to emerge after his egg started to crack and even cut short an evening out with colleagues to go home and check on the duckling. 

She plans to keep him as a pet even after he grows.

Clarence Court Farms called last month’s hatchings by Miss Lello a feat of ‘remarkably slim odds’, while Waitrose added fertilised eggs are safe to eat and ‘entirely indistinguishable’ from normal, unincubated eggs.

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