3 questions about meat quail compared to meat chickens.

Discussion in 'Quail' started by cupman, Nov 2, 2011.

  1. cupman

    cupman Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Portland, OR
    First time quail raiser here, I don't even have them yet but I'm shooting for this Spring as hatching time. I have done meat chickens with a friend before and was trying to see if it's anything like them or not.

    1) Cornish-X are the main meat chickens but their genetics is a mystery and so you need to buy the birds every cycle, can't really hatch your own. Are jumbo coturnix like this or can I breed them and hatch more out?

    2) Age of maturity. I have heard bobwhites won't mature until they are 5 months old but coturnix will at 6 weeks. Do jumbo coturnix mature at the same age as regular sized quail? How about jumbo bobwhites?

    3) In meat chickens we raised them straight run up until slaughter, if they are all raised together do I still need to adhere to the 1:5 male/female ratio? Can jumbo coturnix be raised straight run to slaughter?

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Charlotte, NC
    I can't answer all your questions, but here's what I've got:

    1. Jumbo coturnix are selectively bred for simply by choosing larger birds to breed each cycle. As long as you choose your breeding stock for size, you should be able to continue breeding jumbos.

    2. If this were the SAT I'd go ahead and fill in the circle next to "yes, they will mature at the same rate as their standard-sized counterparts." But since you are actually going to use this information to make decisions, I'm going to admit I don't really know for sure.

    3. Yes. Up to the age of 6 weeks, provided they have enough space, you won't need to separate them. Straight run is fine. Harvesting female quail is highly interesting, as you'll find eggs in all stages of development in them.

    Good luck! Someone here will be able to answer number 2 correctly and also set me straight if I'm wrong about the others (but I don't think I am).
     
  3. cupman

    cupman Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Interesting, iamcuriositycat, about the female harvesting.. do people generally not harvest the females? My goal is to have 4 males and 16 females for a breeding pen and the rest I was going to eat. If you don't harvest the females, what do you end up doing with them?
     
  4. 7L Farm

    7L Farm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I harvest mine to eat or sell them. If you want more eggs keep them.
     
  5. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:I think most people DO harvest the females--just not as many of them, because they're usually saving some back for breeding. But in many other species--like ducks, which is the main species I raise--almost all females are either held for breeding, sold for egg laying, or kept to improve male-female ratios. So quail are the only species I've ever harvested the females, and I just find their reproductive system to be fascinating--all those eggs in them!
     
  6. bfrancis

    bfrancis Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:I think most people DO harvest the females--just not as many of them, because they're usually saving some back for breeding. But in many other species--like ducks, which is the main species I raise--almost all females are either held for breeding, sold for egg laying, or kept to improve male-female ratios. So quail are the only species I've ever harvested the females, and I just find their reproductive system to be fascinating--all those eggs in them!

    iamcuriositycat is exactly right. Normally, if females are harvested it is because they didn't make the color cut or had some defect that wouldn't make it marketable for your own egg production or reproduction...and you certainly wouldn't sell a substandard hen or your name as a breeder is mud...but they taste just as good as the males [​IMG]
     

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