Bobtail Information Request

Discussion in 'Quail' started by discoveregg, Jun 5, 2011.

  1. discoveregg

    discoveregg Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 15, 2011
    Northern Idaho
    Hi All [​IMG]

    I'm moving to Nothern Idaho in late July/early August [​IMG] and would like to try raising Bobwhites for home consumption. Although there is plenty of information on other breeds of quail, Quail Notable Archives & Important / Frequently Requested Topics does not address Bobtails. I need some basic guidance to determine if raising Bobwhites in cold weather climates is even possible! I noticed many of you are from the Southern States, where the weather is humid and hot. In my neck of the woods it will be dry and warm in the summer (high 80's to occasional 100's) and cold in the winter (average high in January and February is in the 30's with lows in the 20's). Also, I'll have plenty of wildlife on my property including bear, possiibly wolves, moose, racoons etc. How viable would it be to try raising Bobwhites?
     
  2. JJMR794

    JJMR794 Overrun With Chickens

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    If You Can Keep The Predators And The Winter Winds Off Of Them They'll Do Fine
     
  3. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend... Staff Member

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    Down here in the mountains of New Mexico it regularly gets down in the single digits at night during the winter. Some days never getting above freezing by day. My Bobs have never had any trouble with surviving the cold and have even endured a few nights in the -20's. Although they were kept under heat lamps at this temp.

    So as long as they can get out of all direct wind, which means no open air coops or open floors or roofs, although having ventilation in the roof, and they will stay completely dry, they can survive temps to zero and a bit below. Lots of deep bedding really helps do snuggle into. I would add heat if it is going to drop below zero. Yours should do fine. [​IMG]
     
  4. discoveregg

    discoveregg Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 15, 2011
    Northern Idaho
    [​IMG] Thanks for the replies, it's a weight off my mind! Are there any links or books that you would recommend for the homestead hobbyist? I will have an enclosed old shed/horse stable type structure I can use. Maybe it will work? Also, I've noticed dirt floor dwellings with hiding spots vs breeding pen set ups. What's your recommendation?
    Also, I'd like to find a cost analysis of raising these birds (feed ratio until bird is ready to harvest) ? And does anyone make thier own organic quail feed or free range these birds with clipped wings?
    Well now that I've bombarded you with questions I hope I get some replies LOL [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2011
  5. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend... Staff Member

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    First off, forget the free ranging. Yes, you can free range, but only once!! You will never see them again. Clipped wings or not. An enclose area is great for Bobwhites as they will love the freedom. Some folks keep them in pens or cages, I prefer the aviary setting on a litter floor. I have a giant brush pile in the center for them to not only hide from things they think are after them, but from each other. This way they have a natural setting. However I have found over the years that you should cover the lower half of the fencing so they cannot see out all around. They get stressed and don't feel secure. I allow them one area only to see out and have posts set up all along the inside so they can hop up to see out. They just love to use them.

    Come breeding season, which is late spring to early fall, you will need to separate all pairs as they will fight and can kill each other. Even the females will go after each other. Then in the fall they can all be released together again to covey up for winter.

    Quail don't eat much. So it really doesn't cost much to feed them. But their housing must be extremely well built as they are huge targets for night time predation. Use the strongest of materials available and don't assume nothing can get at your quail. Over build. And then over build again. Then add more.

    Gamebird food is the way to go. I have tried mixing my own, but it is not cost effective and the quail can suffer for it. They need a LOT of protein, especially the girls during egg laying season. I also allow them bird seeds and offer corn in the winter to stoke their inner furnaces. For some of my more finicky eaters, I mix in chicken chick starter with the gamebird food to get them to eat more gamebird food. (That does work).

    I don't know of any really good books on keeping quail, however the internet is a great place to start. Many websites can tell you a ton of stuff about all sorts of things on quail.

    I hope this all helps. [​IMG]
     
  6. JJMR794

    JJMR794 Overrun With Chickens

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    Quote:VERY WELL SAID [​IMG]
     
  7. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend... Staff Member

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    Thanks JJ [​IMG]
     

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