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Author Topic: Muscovey drake -- the winner  (Read 2388 times)
Cindi
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« on: December 13, 2007, 09:59:37 AM »

We have 5 Musovey drakes and 3 ducks (is that what the females are called) that are just about mature.  After losing the 10 other older Muscovey stock to the weasel awhile back, we have these young stock that were in a different house that lived (thank goodness).  The drakes are getting old enough now that the ones not needed will be put into our freezers (yea, yummy duck dinners coming up).

My Sister and I were outside yesterday looking at the drakes, deciding which one we would be keeping.  She would not tell me her choice, so as not to bias my opinion.  I chose the same one that she wanted to keep.  He will replace our beautiful old dude, we called "Big Boy".  He was a beauty.

This drake is very pretty too though.  He does not have the typical red face of all the other Muscoveys that we have had, his face is black, and I think it will remain black.  The red would have showed up by now for surely. 

We tried to keep two drakes before and unlike the roosters, they would get into some pretty good fights, so, off with his head.  We kept only one. 

Anyone know how to make drakes get along other than complete separation?  That is not a choice here though.  I like the red face of the Muscovey drakes, I think they look cool.

The picture of the duck in the back, the dark looking one, is the one that we are going to keep, the second is just a picture of his face.

The third picture is one I took of poor old Big Boy, he was a real beauty, maybe one day we will have a young one that looks just like him.   Have a wonderful and great day, enjoying our life we live.  Cindi





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« Reply #1 on: December 13, 2007, 11:36:49 PM »

I like the looks of that first duck in the first picture, the dark one, the tasty looking one. I would cook him in a roasting bag with butter and sweet onions. It would be a fine meal.















Just kidding! grin    That is me at the top left chasing after your duck.  tongue grin


Sincerely, JP
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« Reply #2 on: December 14, 2007, 01:22:25 AM »

Ok Cindi now dont get mad at me  tongue That black one is not pure Muscovey. All Muscoveys especially the drakes will have a face full of red. The wild ones like around Florida have less red but it is still prominate in the head markings. And he should have around the eyes and by the bill full of the red. If they dont have it then they are not pure. They should have it starting at 2 month old the starting of faint red moving back as they get older and when they become 5-6 months old (sex mature) they will be fully red in the face. Some here in the US is even on the tops of there heads. The females should even have a little around there eyes like eye liner. You should see the blue Muscoveys here they are beautiful and very carnucled (SP)(red blobs on there face and on the turkeys necks If you are wanting to keep them pure I would not use him for breeding. Muscoveys are really good eating a very lean red meat. And lots of it. I have never ate them but they lay good and they sale good at the sales. Sorry I show water fowl and I used to breed the Muscoveys but ran out of room for them as they eat ALLOT. 
Check this out Feather Source
scrool down to almost the bottom where it Says Mule Duck Muscovey/silver appleyard cross Crosses are non fertil and wont breed they may try but no little swimmers to make it happen. They have the body type of the Muscovey but none of the carnucled look.
Angi
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Cindi
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« Reply #3 on: December 14, 2007, 08:54:59 AM »

Ok Cindi now dont get mad at me  tongue That black one is not pure Muscovey. All Muscoveys especially the drakes will have a face full of red. The wild ones like around Florida have less red but it is still prominate in the head markings. And he should have around the eyes and by the bill full of the red. If they dont have it then they are not pure. They should have it starting at 2 month old the starting of faint red moving back as they get older and when they become 5-6 months old (sex mature) they will be fully red in the face. Some here in the US is even on the tops of there heads. The females should even have a little around there eyes like eye liner. You should see the blue Muscoveys here they are beautiful and very carnucled (SP)(red blobs on there face and on the turkeys necks If you are wanting to keep them pure I would not use him for breeding. Muscoveys are really good eating a very lean red meat. And lots of it. I have never ate them but they lay good and they sale good at the sales. Sorry I show water fowl and I used to breed the Muscoveys but ran out of room for them as they eat ALLOT. 
Check this out Feather Source
scrool down to almost the bottom where it Says Mule Duck Muscovey/silver appleyard cross Crosses are non fertil and wont breed they may try but no little swimmers to make it happen. They have the body type of the Muscovey but none of the carnucled look.
Angi


Oh Angi, I am not mad at you, but you have rocked my socks!!!!  Eeeks!!!!!   And I am extremely grateful for your wisdom that you may correct me and teach me things, don't ever doubt that for a minute, that is important for me to be corrected when I am wrong -- I bear absolutely no issue with that, I love to know the right things.  What on earth has happened in my chickenyard.  I will check out the sites, you have certainly peeked my interest and I am totally shocked at what you have said about the Muscovey not being a purebred, I am serious!!!! 

So, let me tell you what has been going on here with the Muscoveys.  It may be lengthy, I am long winded when I get onto something and I feel compelled to speak a little bit here, for you to understand why I am so shocked.

We have been breeding the (what I thought were pure) Muscovey ducks now for about 2 years.  We have had about 4 batches of Muscoveys come to maturity.  They have all had the read head and faces.  This one that we were intending to keep (but definitely not now) is the only one in about lets say, to make things really simple, 40 Muscoveys, that did not have the red face.  Honestly, the only one that has not had the massive red on the head, that is why we thought it would be so cool to keep him.  That goes to show how little I really do know about breeds.  I must really do so much more studying, and this I will be doing.  I am the type of person that is on a "quest for knowledge", always.

Now I am getting more and more freaked out!!!!!

I think that the Indian Runner drake (the one that I thought was purebred too, until you told me differently and I saw for myself that they didn't have the completely upright look of the pure runners), has mated with one of the Muscovey ducks.   That is the only way that there could be cross breeding and the Muscovey line not coming out pure.  Unless they were not pure to begin with.  But I am pretty sure that they were.

If the Indian Runner drake (who was black) bred with the Muscovey, that would create a black bird.  The Muscovey being a purebred duck and the runner being a cross breed, the offspring would be inclined to look more like the Muscovey.  That is why this drake looks all black, I guess, the runner side showing up, but the Muscovey look.  Is that correct?  I don't know and need to know.

Does this make sense to you Angi, that the runner mated with the Muscovey?  If so, that bugs the crap out of me.  Why would he bother the Muscovey duck?  She is not his type, he had his own runners to breed with, what a pig!!!!!

So, now I am really in a quandry.  Obviously, this drake is gonna go into the freezer.  The other drakes have the typical Muscovey red faces, their dad was Big Boy, the dude you see in the picture above I was speaking about.  I know that he was a purebred (well at least I presume he was a purebred).

Angi, do you know how I would be able to tell if these other drakes are purebred Muscovey and will be fertile.  I am beginning to doubt the drake thing here now, and it would be a bummer to keep one of the drakes for breeding if he is infertile.  Maybe I will have to bite the bullet and buy a new purebred drake.

I actually don't think that I am going to get any more Indian Runners if they cross breed with the Muscoveys, that is not my intention to breed crosses and when summertime comes here, it will be very difficult to keep them so separated anyways, it this is the case.

By the way, we have many ducks in our freezers, the Muscoveys.  They are the most finest of eating fowl I have ever tasted.  The birds are large and make a really nice meal.  There is next to zero fat that comes with these birds either, I was surprised, because I always thought duck was very greasy, but not so.  And let me tell you, I actually prefer the Muscovey meat to turkey, I would take it over turkey any day, and the gravy that comes from these ducks, wow.  Think I am gonna have to cook a duck tonight.  Hmmm.  Yummy!!!!

We have a market for our duck eggs too, although I am hard pressed to sell them because I prefer them over chicken eggs any day.  But the Chinese grocer takes all that we can give them, and they take the Muscoveys too for their freezer.

So Angi, always tell me if I am doing something wrong, please, that is how we get to be better at what we do, and I am game for that.  See, I told you my posts go on and on and on.  Have a wonderful and beautiful day, lovin' this life we live.  Cindi

JP, that bird is going into the pan, sorry that you couldn't come for dinner, smile, smile, smile.  C.

Angi, I found a Canadian chicken site, it was a lot of work, but I found it, and it looks like I might be able to get any breed of eggs to incubate, so much studying to do, so much to become more knowledgable about, eeks!!!!  Wish the winter hibernation was longer for me.  C.
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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
Brian D. Bray
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« Reply #4 on: December 14, 2007, 09:06:44 PM »

If you intend to breed fowl (or any animal for that matter) they must be penned seperately from each species to preserve purity.  An at large flock of anything, chickens, ducks, turkeys, pigeons, etc, will breed out of type that can result in a mule (sterile) or hidden defects.  Hidden defects are supressed genes that pop up now and then and can exclude a very beautiful bird from breeding.  The only way to insure type is isolate, selective breeding.

IE, if you breed a Buff Orpington hen to a Light Brahma rooster you'll get sexlinked young where all the females are brown and the males light colored like the rooster.  Now the rooster looks true to type but his offspring, if bred back to a Light Brahma hen will run varying (approx) percentages of the following: 50% true to type, 25% Mixed--both brown & Light colored roosters and hens, 15% true to Buff Orpington, and about 10% Sport or throw back to types used in developing the breeds.

That's the simplest I can make it--it can be even more complicated.  You need to get a book on breeding poultry to better understand the variables.
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« Reply #5 on: December 15, 2007, 01:44:19 AM »

Yes Cindi if the ducks are all running together they will interbreed.  If you want pure you will need to seperate. If your Runners are crossed the male runners are very how should I put it lightly HORNEY LITTLE THINGS and they will even try to breed the chickens if they are in the same pen. They will even try to go after Geese and Turkeys. Runner and Runner cross males always needs to have  no more then 1 drake per 67 to 8 hens and yes they can cover that many. You want to increase fertality just change there pool or water pan they swim in to clean water every day. They mate like a mad man after that. The Drakes will even go after a hen sitting on eggs or trying to lay an egg because it is an easy lay. No pun intended. This might show why some of the birds you have have smaller amounts of red around the face.  And yes I could see from the pictures of the RUNNER's that if breed to the Muscovey could produce a bird like that. The only thing they would be good for would be the freezer. Muscovey meat is compaired allot to veal with the light non greasy taste and very tender. It is the other Red meat. Also having no red in the face is not something you want to keep for breeding as it is a breed falt if they were pure. The only ones that have very little red are the wild south american breeds. You should look at that site I put in there is some extreemes to the red face that is Show Quality then there is breeder Quaility. I am looking into getting back into them.  I am wanting blue and Barred. Might get out of the runners as well but I have to change over slowly as I have people that want the eggs. So as I get stock back I will sale runners off. You should look all over feather source They have all of the breeds and types out there. And what is good and what is bad for a certain breed.  I would look at either hatching a new Drake out of bought eggs or trying to find a young drake for sale you need to add new blood every couple of years anyway otherwise you start getting deformities. Again I am sorry I really did not want to say anything but when you know the breed because you used to show and breed them and you see something that doesn't look right well. I just dont want you to be mad at me I am not trying to hurt your feelings I am just trying to help you.

Angi


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JP
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« Reply #6 on: December 15, 2007, 06:23:19 AM »

[quote author=Angi
> Yes Cindi if the ducks are all running together they will interbreed.  If you want pure you will need to seperate. If your Runners are crossed the male runners are very how should I put it lightly HORNEY LITTLE THINGS and they will even try to breed the chickens if they are in the same pen. They will even try to go after Geese and Turkeys. Runner and Runner cross males always needs to have  no more then 1 drake per 67 to 8 hens and yes they can cover that many. You want to increase fertality just change there pool or water pan they swim in to clean water every day. They mate like a mad man after that. The Drakes will even go after a hen sitting on eggs or trying to lay an egg because it is an easy lay. No pun intended.

JP > watch out for the horny drakes!!!! grin grin grin



> ... Again I am sorry I really did not want to say anything but when you know the breed because you used to show and breed them and you see something that doesn't look right well. I just dont want you to be mad at me I am not trying to hurt your feelings I am just trying to help you.

Angi

JP > Angi, I believe Cindi appreciates your experience and your suggestions. Your information is good and helpful. she stated in an earlier post a many thanks for your input. Hope it was ok to speak on your behalf Cindi. Hope everyone has a nice day, a cold front is coming to us tonight, yeah!!!

Sincerely, JP
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Cindi
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« Reply #7 on: December 15, 2007, 08:17:52 AM »

JP, speak for me any ol' time that your lil' heart desires, it is all good.

So, Angi, JP is right, please correct me anytime you desire.

Brian, I love your input too.  I am going to order that book from McMurray hatchery on breeding chickens that you said was good, it is on my list and I will get on it.

I have absolutely zero interest in ever showing any of my birds, that is not my gig, but I don't want crossbreeds by any means.  That is not my gig.

Yes, the Indian Runner drake was (not pardon my expression), and horny little thing.  I would see him chasing all the girls around, and he could run fast.  My Sister and I used to laugh at him, oh brother, eh, go figure.  So a runner can service over 50 birds, eeeeks!!!!!  Now that is one fast little dude!!!!

So, clean water makes them even more interested in chasing the girls eh?  That would actually make really good sense.  Because we would clean the duck/chicken water baths (an old bathtub and a kiddies swimming pool frequently).  The ducks really loved to have clean water and it was wonderful to watch how much they appreciated this gesture.  We are on city water and being in a rainforest, rarely a shortage of water.  We are metered for our water (ever since the city found out that I operated a nursery, so many years ago, they came and put a water meter in, eeks!!!!).

Now this darn post is going to get lengthy, I hope I don't bore with some mundane thoughts, but these must be expressed.

I was speaking with my Sister about the mule Muscovey yesterday and how he was infertile.  Makes 100% sense.

This batch of Muscoveys that this mule drake is a part of was from an incubated group of eggs.

When we bought our incubator, the dude that sold it to us raises Muscovey ducks for sale.  He included a dozen Muscovey eggs for incubation as a nice gesture and we used a bunch of ours.  I did not realize this until my Sister was telling me this yesterday.

When she incubated the incubator guys eggs and our eggs, she made a mark on his eggs and left ours blank.  This totally corroborates what I have read here in this post.

Out of the 12 eggs that he gave us and about 30 that we had put in the incubator of our own, only 8 hatched out, for whatever the reason.  Two of ours and 6 of his. 

When my Sister was at this incubator guys place, she thought it cool that all his Muscoveys over at his farm looked the same colour and markings.  All the ones that we had ever hatched out under ducks previously were so diversified in colour.  (gotta be that blasted horny old peckertoad Indian Runner).

This group of Muscoveys that are now 2 1-/2 months old (approximately), all the drakes look very much identical, except that pretty one with the black face, that is obviously no good for anything else other than the pot.  They are still young, but they are big.

That would be why the drakes all look so similar, these are the drakes that hatched from the incubator guy's eggs that he gave us.  that would mean that one of the 3 ducks that hatched out from this dudes eggs would be one of ours too, I am thinking that it would be the brownish one, the other two are rather close looking to the drakes.

All this incubator guy raises is Muscovey ducks, so I believe that we would have a purebred Muscovey drake, so that is good.

Yes, this newbie to the genetic stuff with the birds has so much yet to learn, but that is OK, I am on that quest for knowledge.  Have a wonderful, great day.  Cindi

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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
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« Reply #8 on: December 15, 2007, 11:12:17 PM »

No it was ment one drake to 6 to 8 hens (ducks), And if you are going to mix eggs from other sources just go and buy colored zip ties. Mark the eggs from where they are and pick a color. Now unless you can seperate the hatching eggs into a different place you will have to watch closely on hatch day and those chicks/ducklings that hatch out of the marked eggs place a colored zip tie on there leg loose but not loose enough that they will slip off. Keep a watch on it as they grow and when it starts to get tight place a new on on there leg loose but not so loose as they will slip off. Keep doing that till they finnish growing and you can place a leg band on them or cull them out if you dont want to keep them. But you will never loose track on which chicks/ducks came from which eggs. I do that with eggs I get from other sources. Or in my runner eggs to keep colors seperate and they are a whole bunch cheaper then a bunch of different size leg bands. And work just as well. Like you can mark one color for Sire and one for dam and one color for year. There is endless possabilitys. They other thing you can do is go out and buy you a toe punch. And when those chicks/ducks hatch you can punch through one of the toe webs to mark which egg they came from. There are so many fifferent patterns you can use for marking that way as well.

Angi
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Cindi
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« Reply #9 on: December 16, 2007, 02:18:43 PM »

Angi, that is some good and useful information.  Keeping records on everything is such a good idea and should always be done.  About punching a hole in the web, would a leather punch work?  I would imagine so.  I have a leather punch with several different sized holes (of course).  Does this cause any pain to the critter?  Curious here. Have a great and best day.  Cindi
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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
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« Reply #10 on: December 16, 2007, 11:32:06 PM »

The feed stores or poultry supply places carry toe punches. And when you do it right when they hatch so you make sure to catch who came out of what egg you punch through the toe web they will fuss but then again when do they ever not fuss when you are picking them up. Record keeping is what will help you allot and it really dosnt take a bunch of time. You mark the eggs and then mark the chicks/ducks when they hatch either with toe punches or zip ties. I moved a bunch of broiler chicks that I am raising and when I moved them they all went on the scale. They are 3 weeks old on the 20th and I had one 2 1/4 lb and 2  2lb chicks and a bunch of 1 3/4 lb chicks those all got a colored leg bend with a zip tie different color for 2 1/2, 2 and 1 3/4 the others did not get any. As the bigger chicks depending on when the lady lets me know how many cornish game hen size chickens she wants for christmas then the bigger ones will be processed for her at 5.00 each for 1 1/2 to 2 lb cornish game hens. Then we will do a few for the family and the rest will wait till middle of Jan when they will dress out at 6 to 7lbs for broilers/ roasters.  Then they will be 1.75 lb for dressed out chickens.

Angi

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Cindi
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« Reply #11 on: December 17, 2007, 08:56:55 AM »

Angi, do you do your own bird slaughter at your place?  When we had all our ducks we took to the man in a neighbouring town, he finished each bird for us, $1.00 each.  It was honestly to say, so easy to just have him perform this task, and the time was so minimal too.  It was worth it for us.  It is such a big job to perform this task, and very unpleasant.  Have a great and wonderful day, Cindi
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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
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« Reply #12 on: December 17, 2007, 09:00:19 PM »

I stumbled across an old splitting wedge in the shed.  Hidden in a box of stuff from who knows when--I think it used to belong to my grandfather.  Don't need a splitting wedge for making fire wood or fence railings so I'm thinking of turning into a guiotine for chickens.  I'm thinking of using a spring and counter weight so it will be self cocking--just insert chickens head, pull the lever, and repeat.

I just conveted a hand truck with 2 part handles (put together with cotter pins) that allows it to be used for a hand truck or small dolly.  I made it so I can mount my (new) air compressor on it along with all the accessories and wheel to where ever I need it. 

After one day of using my new air compressor and brad nailer while building nest boxes for the pigeon pen I can't wait to use it building frames.  I figure I can now make 10-12 in the same time it took me to make 1 the old fashioned way.  And then there's all those neat tools for mechanical work, sheet metal, and painting.  Then I can get a complete sent of nailers and staplers--at this rate I might even be able to get a few projects finished before spring. 

Of course, for every project I finish there is always at least 2 more to add to the list.  My 5 year plan is already up to 8 so streamlining is essential.
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« Reply #13 on: December 18, 2007, 01:36:38 AM »

Yes Cindi, I do my own at home. And there is no one around here that does the processing and you have to be inspected and pay fees for that. All of my customers that buy know I am not inspected and I am not supposed to sale it to them but they are here when it is done and I am only helping them So to say. I have an order for 6 cornish game hens for Friday. So It is going to rain tomorrow so they will get the Ax Wed. And then we go and deliver them on Friday.

Sounds good Brian I know how that is you finnish one project then 10 others come about or you forgot you needed to do.


Angi
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Cindi
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« Reply #14 on: December 18, 2007, 08:04:57 AM »

Brian, see what I was talking about before.  You are up to come pretty cool stuff over at your place.  You have and are designing neat things.  Good for you!!!!  I like the guillotine thing, hee, hee.

I wish that I could wrap my head around the killing of the birds.  I actually think that I am becoming more brave as time passes, and I could help my Sister out doing this, this year.  It is time consuming to take the birds across the river to have the dude do it all for us, but it really is so fast, and at a $1 a bird, that is pretty fair.

She has no issues with any part of this, not even gutting them.  Sorry....that is where I don't think I could ever help out, it plain and simply grosses me out and the smell is something that is beyond what I could ever get into.  I haven't smelled a dead chicken in many years. I think it comes from childhood, somewhere, some kind of repressed memory or something I think.  But I know it is real, I remember this scent, and I can bet my bottom dollar that my Mother used to kill ours.  I know that she kept chickens, eeks!!!  those repressed memories!!!!

I know there has been huge changes in the laws that govern the selling of chickens for food in our area recently.  Our neighbour used to raise meat birds, but now she doesn't want to do it any more because of the new laws.  She must be one that abides by the book, too bad is all I can say, some people get so hung up on crap.  Angi, good that you get your customers to get you to assist them so they can have fresh, great, home grown food, yes!!!   Beautiful day, great day, Cindi
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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
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