Another winter readiness question thread...

le_bwah

Crowing
May 1, 2018
1,056
2,709
296
Boise, ID
My Coop
My Coop
I know there's been about a gajillion posts over the years from people asking if their chickens/quail or what-have-you are going to make it in the cold, and I'm here to add one more. I haven't been able to dig up a definitive answer in old threads as to when low temperatures become dangerous to Japanese quail.

We're slated for lows in the mid teens (F) this week, and I'm starting to get concerned about the birds' safety. I've heard some people say to add heat, others warning against it, and others still who totally move their birds indoors for winter; basically I'm a nervous newbie who doesn't know what to do.

Anyone have any numbers/anecdotes on the hardiness of quail in winter conditions? Are there signs I should look for in the birds that would tell me they're struggling? Any input from experienced quail peeps would be greatly appreciated.
 

paneubert

Songster
Nov 20, 2015
1,963
2,764
241
Snohomish County, Washington State
My Coop
My Coop
I did nothing for my quail other than give them a place to avoid wind. They lived on the ground and would just dig in or huddle with each other. They are much hardier than chickens. My aviary is/was open on 3 sides. Wire from floor to ceiling. We would get down to the 20's and teens occasionally. Coturnix quail are from the north of Asia, so can handle cold.
 

le_bwah

Crowing
May 1, 2018
1,056
2,709
296
Boise, ID
My Coop
My Coop
Thanks for sharing, that's reassuring to hear.

It's an aviary. I've wrapped the lower half in clear plastic and added tons of extra bedding, but it gets icy at night. They take shelter during the day, but always spend the night right out in the open, huddled together. And it's not like they have combs to worry about, but I swear I've seen them shiver before. I'm worried there's something more/better I could be doing.

PC040260.JPG
 
Last edited:

donkeydew2farms

Crowing
7 Years
Apr 12, 2014
777
1,288
271
DSC_0794.JPG I was wondering about the cold too. so far they seem to be happy. I have three above the ground and I stuff them with hay also the ones on the ground they love it they tunnel and hide. It gets cold here but my concern is the rain and sleet. so I have plastic over three side and a tarp over head on a slant so it runs o
 

DK newbie

Songster
5 Years
Apr 20, 2015
1,772
1,068
241
Cardboard boxes, hollow logs, the bottom half of a plastic dog house, overturned. They definitely use them during the day, but not at night. Not sure why.
Could you put a Christmas string light or similar into the dog house? I'm thinking the light will attract them. It might also keep them awake though, but if it's really cold that could be an advantage..
Anyway, I have yet to see a post where someone could document that adult quail had died from cold, so you are probably fine no matter what you do - as long as you keep them sheltered and dry.
 

le_bwah

Crowing
May 1, 2018
1,056
2,709
296
Boise, ID
My Coop
My Coop
Could you put a Christmas string light or similar into the dog house? I'm thinking the light will attract them. It might also keep them awake though, but if it's really cold that could be an advantage..
Anyway, I have yet to see a post where someone could document that adult quail had died from cold, so you are probably fine no matter what you do - as long as you keep them sheltered and dry.

Thinking about it, you're right. Haven't seen many threads about them dropping dead in the cold. Just don't want them uncomfortable, then. :hmm Hmmm... Extra light might start them laying/throw off their molt. Maybe I could make one of those "cookie tin" heaters people use for waterers, and put that inside the doghouse? Just a bit worried about the fire risk with anything electric.
 

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom