INSIDER – Charli Lello, 29, was looking for something to do to pass the time while being furloughed.
After seeing a video of a woman incubating quail eggs, she decided to try something similar with duck eggs she bought in a Waitrose supermarket, she told the BBC.
After incubating the eggs for about a month, she heard “beeping” sounds and the fluffy ducklings started to emerge from their shells. “I was so excited for them to hatch but I still had in the back of my mind that these are supermarket eggs,” Lello, of Hertfordshire, United Kingdom (UK), told the BBC.
“They have been collected, bashed around on a delivery truck, then rattled around on a trolley onto a shelf, picked up and put down by who knows how many people, so they still might not go all the way.”
They did, though, and now Beep, Peep, and Meep will live a “very happy life” as her pets, she said. A Waitrose spokesman told BBC that fertilised eggs are safe to eat and “entirely indistinguishable” from other eggs unless they’re incubated.
It is “notoriously difficult” to identify the gender of white-feathered ducks, and so “very occasionally” a male may be left with females. “There may also be instances when a wild duck encounters farmed drakes, but again, this is rare,” the spokesman said.
A spokeswoman for Clarence Court Farms, which produced the eggs, told the BBC that Lello’s experience was a rare one. “It is a feat of remarkably slim odds that a duckling has been hatched,” he said. “But we acknowledge that it’s not impossible.”
Lello though, called her time hatching the “cutest little balls of fluff” an amazing experience but said she would not be repeating it.