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Finally got my first quail!

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 

Finally bit the bullet and got my first quail! 11 little babies, 2 at about 2 weeks and the others just about a week! In a big RUB with a heatmat, going to look about a heat bulb though as might be better.


The little guys are constantly trying to get under the biggest one so I might split the up so not to bother them too much.


The colour difference is crazy, the guy I got them off was just hatching eggs he bought, the two biggest and one small one is white, the rest are mostly dark brown with black stripes with one a very light brown and black stripes so going to be interesting.


Am I right in thinking you can get white japanese quail?

post #2 of 21

Texas A&M Coturnix are fairly common.  That is what your white quail are.

post #3 of 21
post #4 of 21
Thread Starter 

They must be, the guy I got them off ust have got a mix because he only breeds the brown coloured ones, with very few white ones amongst them. Not sure how comon the Texas AM are in the UK but cant think of any other white coloured ones.


Im feeding them actually fish food pellets, they use krill and herring meal? 38% protein and the wee guys gorge it down, they had been on poorly crushed chick crumb which I know isnt high enough.  


Do you think the fish food would do? It is a high quality one even by fish standards but wondering if they would miss anything.


Also when should I start adding grit or oyster shell? I see both for sale but wondering which is more essential for now, I know oyster is good for eggs but maybe does the same as grit?

post #5 of 21

The protein is fine, if not a little high.  It is going to make them grow faster than usual.  I don't know if there are other nutrients that might be lacking, but protein is the main one people care about.  If you are worried, you could always mix the fish pellets in with some more "classic" gamebird or chicken feed.  That would reduce the protein level down to more average (25-30%), and might save you money depending on how much the fish pellets cost versus an average chicken feed.


If they are in cages with no access to grit on the ground, then yes, supply some.  It is not the same as calcium/oyster shell.  Calcium/oyster shell is way soft and would not serve the purpose of grit.  And on the flip side, grit will not serve the purpose of calcium/oyster shell.  The only caution I would give is that they do not need calcium/oyster shell until you see them start laying.  If you feed it before, they have no use for it and it could hypothetically harm their kidneys.

post #6 of 21
Thread Starter 

Thanks man, yeh I might try mixing, is it normal for them to eat so much? Ive had chicks before years ago but these guys just eat eat eat and of course the other end haha.  I need to get some grit for them asap.  Im thinking just as a big bag of feed may be too much, but the speed they are eating it could be just right for them even with waste!.  Vitain wise the fish food has a lot due to it being specialist.  But what other nutrients or extras could I be adding?


What greens should I try as currently just n the feed, tried a half grape but not so much as a peck.  These guys I suppose are just a week old, with a couple bigger.  I appreciate the help a lot by the way

post #7 of 21

I believe the white corturnix are also called English White.


I agree that mixing the fish food and chicken feed is a good idea if it has the right nutrients. Here is a link to a calculator that will tell you how much of each feed to mix to get the desired protein. I wouldn't feed them any other types of food or treats till they are about three or four weeks old. The feed should be giving them everything they need. Here is a link about their nutritional needs.


Also, I suggest you get the grit made for chicken chicks. The kind for adult chickens will be too big. An alternative to oyster shell is crushed egg shells. So if you are eating chicken eggs now save the shells. Microwave them for 30 seconds or bake them for about 10 mintues. Then crush them up. But they won't need it till they start laying at 6-8 weeks.

post #8 of 21
Thread Starter 

Thanks Lomine! They really are little eating and pooping machines.  Should I have food available for them all the time or feed them a couple times of day with as much as they can eat?  I know they mature fast so I imagine their little metabolism means that they require food constantly, or at least are programmed to eat constantly whether it is good for them or not

post #9 of 21

Mine have access to dry feed 24/7. I give fermented feed at least once a day, sometimes twice but much less in the evening. When they were 1-3 weeks I gave it three times a day. I don't know if there are any adverse effects to letting them eat as much as they want. I don't think they are like Cornish Cross meat birds that you have to limit feed or they will grow too fast and die.  I will say that their food consumption really seemed to slow down around week 6. None of mine look overweight to me and they don't seem to have any problems getting around (like a meat bird would at butchering age).

post #10 of 21
I would agree with splitting the larger brids from the smaller birds for a little while until they grow a little more. Recently got 40+ tex a&m and suffered 2 drowning trampling deaths. The brooder sold me 2 batchs that were only supposed to be one week apart in age.
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