1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

Broody bobwhites?

Discussion in 'Quail' started by 18angovem, Feb 16, 2015.

  1. 18angovem

    18angovem Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,342
    20
    113
    Jun 15, 2014
    Warren Pennsylvania
    Is there any way to make a bobwhite quail go broody or perhaps is there a certain strand of bobwhite quail that go broody? They do live in the wild so those ones must go broody.
     
  2. ducky 13

    ducky 13 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Maybe more cover could start broodiness. You could put pine branches and tall grasses inside the pen, for cover. This can make it so it's more like in the wild.
     
  3. 18angovem

    18angovem Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,342
    20
    113
    Jun 15, 2014
    Warren Pennsylvania
    Humn, well my aviary isnt finished yet but I plan on making it look identical to the wild they live in with a whole heck of a lot of landscaping.
     
  4. ducky 13

    ducky 13 Chillin' With My Peeps

    I figure it would help push them into broodiness. I heard that it happened with a Japanese quail
     
  5. dc3085

    dc3085 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Domestication of breeding stock happens very quickly. Wild coturnix cannot recognize the call of a bird with just one generational cross with a domestic. The point of explaining that is that instincts are lost very quickly when birds are domesticated. First you must realize that aside from research purposes and without a permit, it is illegal to capture wild quail, and has been for a very long time. That means that bobwhites you are able to purchase are quite domesticated. Considering some states began releasing bobs as early as 1895, some stock has been domesticated that long or longer.

    No one I've encountered or the research i've done really shows what part of raising domestic game birds causes them to lose instinct. All we know is that domesticated or cage raised game birds do not possess the instinct to brood. It happens very very rarely that they actually brood their eggs. One in a million or something ridiculous. It's possible that the mother passes along this information but no one that wants to experiment with it ever has quail go broody so it's a non-starter. Button quail used to go broody quite often but that happens less and less by the day.

    I know when you are new to quail, especially if you've had chickens that this is hard to understand, but if you want to hatch quail buy an incubator. Using broody chickens isn't acceptable because they can transmit disease as well as most often breaking the eggs or squishing the babies. Doves or pigeons are a good alternative without having the risk, but at the end of the day it's just best to build or buy an incubator. Cooler bators can be built for less than $40, complete incubators with egg turners and thermostatic control can be bought for around $100-150.

    The reality is the breeders who probably could figure out how to make quail go broody, have no need or desire to. It's just much easier to use an incubator, it doesn't wander off, need to be fed, get eaten by predators, ruin the hatch bc of lack of skill, etc. Essentially to most breeders it's just a novelty and it's a much less accurate method than our bators. Don't get me wrong I've tried to work on the broodiness of coturnix, but no environmental factor I've discovered has prompted any birds to brood and I've tried a lot.
     
    BaJa likes this.
  6. Chickengirl1304

    Chickengirl1304 Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,521
    40
    181
    May 5, 2012
    California
    Sorry posted to the wrong place
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2015
  7. 18angovem

    18angovem Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,342
    20
    113
    Jun 15, 2014
    Warren Pennsylvania
    Quote:Thanks! I have an incubator just wanted to have my aviary be as close to the wild as possible. I have 15 quail in a 900ft aviary, so trying to make it seem like the wild.
     
  8. dc3085

    dc3085 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Give them lots of nesting materials, keep it nice and quiet around their aviary, and cross your fingers. Maybe you'll be the one that gets that broody bird. It has to happen to someone.
     
  9. pigeons in ak

    pigeons in ak Chillin' With My Peeps

    300
    2
    81
    Oct 15, 2013
    Alaska
    if you want a strain that is more likely to go broody get northern bobwhite because they aren't that inbred like other varieties.
    [​IMG]
    I had a pair in here last year until they started to build a nest then i moved them to a 2' x 3' wire cage with hay as bedding. they made a nest
    she laid 16 eggs five were fertile and four hatched.
     
  10. dc3085

    dc3085 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Bobs go broody as infrequently as most other domestic quail. Inbreeding coefficient will vary depending on the stock you have and what's been done with it by the previous breeder. Bobs have been kept domestically in the US for more than 125 years, plenty of time to inbreed the heck out of them.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by