Are My Coturnix Ever Going to Lay?

DavidKerk

Songster
7 Years
Feb 9, 2013
545
18
146
I bought 4 Coturnix quail over 3 weeks ago. They are 13 weeks old. I have two males and two females. I am sure on the sexing because I've had multiple people (on BYC) reasure it. What aren't they laying? Anything I can do to get them to start?

Also, some (not all) of their excrement has been tan and foamy. Is this bad?

Thanks!!!
 

danpv

In the Brooder
7 Years
Mar 8, 2012
21
0
24
You don't need two males with two females. The usual ratio is one male to four, five or six females. Maybe the ladies are too bothered by the males (who must be competing for the two girls) to relax and lay.

Just over two weeks ago I bought my first six coturnix females aged four months. I was told that they might not lay for several weeks after I got them home due to that upsetting change in living arrangements. Same evening I got them into their new digs, one laid an egg; next day two more eggs; and they're now averaging three or four eggs per day - still shy of what should be six eggs per day, but they're doing better all the time.

If they're well fed and happy, they'll do what comes naturally. So unless you plan to breed them, you might consider ditching the males - or getting more females.
 

DavidKerk

Songster
7 Years
Feb 9, 2013
545
18
146
You don't need two males with two females. The usual ratio is one male to four, five or six females. Maybe the ladies are too bothered by the males (who must be competing for the two girls) to relax and lay.

Just over two weeks ago I bought my first six coturnix females aged four months. I was told that they might not lay for several weeks after I got them home due to that upsetting change in living arrangements. Same evening I got them into their new digs, one laid an egg; next day two more eggs; and they're now averaging three or four eggs per day - still shy of what should be six eggs per day, but they're doing better all the time.

If they're well fed and happy, they'll do what comes naturally. So unless you plan to breed them, you might consider ditching the males - or getting more females.
Thanks for the post! I think I might get more females!
 

underground chickenman

Songster
10 Years
May 30, 2009
562
10
131
Orlando, Florida
The primary keys to laying are good nutrition and adequate light. Make sure you are using a good laying ration for game birds, not chickens, or use game bird starter and add oyster shell. They also need at least 14 hours of continuous light. We are just about there with natural light in Florida. Depending on where you live, you could have too few hours of natural light and need to supplement with artificial light.

Finally, as danpv suggested, your males may be keeping the females too busy to lay. Try removing one of the males so you have a one male to two female ratio and see what happens. Since the lone male will not be happy by himself and to save you from having to provide another pen, you might consider eating him.

UGCM
 

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