First post. Searched forums but haven't seen a direct match to the problems I'm having
I have Jumbos on 1/2 x 1, 16g, galvanized, high-quality wire. At present I have 6 of 30-odd quail with bandaged feet. The larger of the birds seem to have this problem, average weight around 13 oz. Quail smaller than this aren't having as many problems.
Damage to the feet occurs mainly on the pad, the point where all toes meet in the middle. I first notice the onset of a new issue with significant blood tracks over the cage floor. The pads are swollen and bleeding, often torn, but can be similar to a cracked dry lake bed on a micro-scale... numerous fractures in the foot pad. Antiseptic wash and antibiotic ointment abates the issue somewhat, but after 2-3 weeks, no foot pad looks sufficiently healed to remove the wrap.
I don't believe this is bumblefoot. I've had that issue with chicks, doctored it and I think I know the symptoms. This is not a infection pocket with the circular scab most often referred to a bumblefoot. There never has been pus.
I have been over the cage floor many times looking for sharp corners and have removed all that I find with a hone and diamond pad. All crimps which hold the cages together have been likewise inspected and addressed. However, even with all this work, this issue still keep coming. I would say a new bleeding foot is popping up about every 3-4 days.
I had cardboard boxes in the cages for dirt baths but first suspected the frayed edges of the cardboard for paper cuts and removed them. No change. The quail do not have the ability to leave the cages for ground contact.
I suspect the wire causes pressure points on the pads and eventually the tissue just erupts. I haven't been able to see a progression of decay to support this hypothesis. I only note when a new bird has a bleeding foot. I appears to erupt in just a day or so.
All commercial cages and most DIY's that I have looked up use this same size of wire. These cages are DIY.
Has anyone survived this natural disaster and if so, how?