This page is being created to give readers some very helpful information about raising the Chukar Partridge in a Domestic setting. I will not go into detail about their history or other details, just breeding and raising them. (work in progress) please check back as I will be completing this page in the near future! ANY medication may or my not be approved by the F.D.A. or other state and/or local regulatory agencies for use on Chukar partridges! These medications are what I use on MY birds for PERSONAL use only!
All Photos are of MY birds in my pens and cages.
Quail chicks in the brooder
The opening for their hiding place!
Pheasants and chukars together!
Caring for Chicks:
Chukar Partridge chicks are like all other game bird chicks of any breed. They must be kept warm, dry, fed, and watered for them to thrive. There is a few rules I follow for game birds besides the usual chick brooding for poultry.
Throughout the brooding process, I feed the same feed mixture that is NON medicated. It is a simple mixture of 1/2 15% protein pullet grower mash, 1/2 48% protein soybean meal. This gives the feed a protein value of right around 31.5%. There is 2 medications I keep on hand at all times. These are Corid (amprolium) for coccidiosis, and Wazine 17 which is a wormer. The reason I use Corid instead of sulfur drugs is that you can not over dose with it. With most sulfur drugs, you can lock up their kidneys if too much is given.
I start by placing the chicks in a ready, preheated brooder with regular quart jar water bases with marbles in them, Feeders in place as usual, and a few butter bowl lids with feed on them as well. I also set a gallon jug of water at one end of the brooder so I will have pre-warmed water when I need to refill the water.
Everything is as usual in brooding any breed of chicks for the first 7 days. On the morning of day eight, I pull their water to prepare them for the medication. On the evening of that same day I mix the wazine with their water and give this to the now thirsty chicks. The Next morning, I pull their water again. Starting that evening they get the Corid. I mix mine stronger than the bottle says to. I mix 1/2 teaspoon to 1 gallon of water. They will stay on this mixture for the next 5 days then return to their usual water with no medications added.
At 3 1/2 weeks of age or sooner if they show ANY signs of stress and/or sickness, I repeat the medication process again preparing them for the weaning of heat.
Growing Chukars:Now after the medication run we have chicks that are over 4 weeks of age. These are ready to be moved into growing pens with wire floors and still fed the same feed mixture above. At about 8 weeks of age I start introducing a 26% game bird grower pellet mixed with their usual ground feed.
I use the same pens for growing and breeding.These pens are 4 feet wide, by 8 feet long, by 4 feet high in the back, by 5 feet high in the front. The breeding pens are enclosed on the sides and back with plywood, a wire front, and are fully roofed with metal roofing. They have wire on 6 feet of the floor with the other 2 feet in plywood. The end with the plywood floor is divided from the rest of the pen with plywood from the roof down leaving about 1 foot open at the bottom for them to have a hiding place out of sight. These pens are big enough for 2 roosters and 3-4 hens along with a pair of pheasants thrown in with them.
In my OPINION, It is VERY important to keep Chukars together if you plan on using them in the breeding pens. They are colony birds! Once the colony has been formed, it is hard to introduce new birds into it without fighting. Other than non colony member Chukars, they are calm and can be housed with similar sized game birds.
Breeding Chukars:Breeding age Chukars (Best if they are at least 30 weeks old) can be forced to lay any time of year! By controlling temp and lighting, they are forced into a laying period. This is done by placing the breeders into small breeder cages built somewhat like quail breeder cages with sloping floors in a controlled temp building of about 60-80 degrees. A 15 inch wide by 24 inch deep by 15 inches high and a floor slope of 2 inches from back to front in the cage is the ideal cage size for this in my opinion. This is large enough for a rooster and 2-3 hens to go into the lighting cycle. After the Chukars are of breeding age, you put the roosters in the layer cages and introduce them to 16 hour lighting a day for 2 weeks (You do this to improve fertility rates of the first eggs layed by the hens) Then you place your hens in the layer cages with the roosters. You continue the lighting until egg production drops off to where it is not feasible for them to continue laying then darken them out with 8 hour lighting a day for 8 weeks. Then use the above method to induce the laying cycle again!A NOTE on SEXING mature Chukars:It is possible to get CLOSE when sexing mature chukars! In most cases, The roosters will have a bigger body, a wider "blocky" style head and the hens will have a smaller looking head. This is NOWHERE near 100% correct on sexing these birds! The only sure way to sex them is learning to vent sex!!
Everything on this page is just my 2 cents worth and is posted here in hopes of helping a few people have better luck with raising their birds!p