Bobwhite Quail Questions

Discussion in 'Quail' started by naturalroots17, Apr 2, 2017.

  1. naturalroots17

    naturalroots17 Just Hatched

    Apr 2, 2017
    Central Virginia

    I have 80 GG bobwhite quail hatching as we speak, I plan on building them an outdoor ground run. I live in Central VA & I'm wondering how to make it as natural as possible. I was going to spread millet seeds around, in hopes they sprout and grow, obviously keep the grass as tall as possible but I've never raised them on the ground before so, curious as to what recommendations others have.

    We use lumber and hardware cloth to build our coops & tractors, slant corrugated roofs for rainwater collection.

    What kind of feed do others feed. I've always seen people use the same stuff they feed laying hens, but what other things would help. They are being raised for eggs & meat to sell at farmer's markets.

    I don't know about the mobility of the tractor style run but it will be big, maybe 8 x 12 x 48". Is that big enough? We have breeding pens, they are rabbit hutch style, but those are obviously only temporary living quarters, we want as natural a situation as we can for them.

    Also, with ground style coops, what is the best way to collect eggs? We really don't want to build a walk in sized aviary... the goal is to modify this design we use for small pullets before they graduate to the laying coops

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    Last edited: Apr 2, 2017
  2. DK newbie

    DK newbie Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 20, 2015
    I think the usual recommendation for bobwhites is 2 square feet for each bird, making 8x12 enough for 48 birds. Do you know how old they will be at slaughter? If they have become sexually mature and it's breeding season it might not be possible to keep them in a community pen.

    As for egg collection.. I'm just guessing here, as I don't know much about bobwhites, but I think it might work if you make areas with cover - plants, pine branches, hay and such - right next to/in front of doors in the enclosure and keep the rest of the enclosure open. Hopefully the majority of the eggs will be in the cover and you'll be able to reach them from the doors.
    BaJa likes this.
  3. naturalroots17

    naturalroots17 Just Hatched

    Apr 2, 2017
    Central Virginia
    2 ft per bird? I've read 1... that makes this operation much, much bigger. Hmmm. They will reach sexual maturity, but we do have other tractors and pens to move and shuffle some birds around. Thanks! Next stages of planning are beginning now!
  4. Dani xxx

    Dani xxx Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 23, 2016
    Farnham common bucks uk
    The 1sq ft is for coturinix quail bobwhites people say are more wild and aggressive so need more space good luck ! X :)
    Birdhunter and naturalroots17 like this.
  5. Birdhunter

    Birdhunter Out Of The Brooder

    May 17, 2015
    I've been raising my bobwhite quail for a year and have followed the two foot rule and it has worked great. Just hatched my first 45 chicks five weeks ago. Have them in a large new cattle trough with screened top. When should I put them outside.
  6. birdmanmax

    birdmanmax Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 27, 2016
    Central Michigan
    It depending on where you live and the temp. of the nights. But here in Michigan I put them outside as soon as I notice them flying out or flying up onto the feeders to roost. I don't really have a specific time(or certain amount of weeks) because our temps. here can change drastically even in the summer.
    Birdhunter likes this.
  7. BaJa

    BaJa Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 2, 2017
    Norwich, Ontario
    the bigger the better. I have one pair in a 8x20x6 pen and they incubate their own eggs. I feed mine milo, millet, cracked and whole corn by sprinkling it on the ground. put pine branches, plant native grasses, and more natural things and your quail will love you. go for at least three square foot per bird
    Birdhunter likes this.

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