Can outdoor quail make my parrot sick?

Discussion in 'Quail' started by LoveFeathers, Jul 25, 2011.

  1. LoveFeathers

    LoveFeathers Out Of The Brooder

    Jul 23, 2011
    I have a Congo African Grey parrot. I'm looking into getting some backyard quail but because our winters get as cold as -30 I would have to bring the quail inside in the winter. I'm very concerned about them being outside and bringing something in for my Grey to catch. This is a huge deal and I need to research this thoroughly but figure this is a good place to start. Can anyone help? Is there anything I can give them to prevent them catching anything or to medicate them before bringing them in for the winter? Thanks in advance!
  2. Mibotsu

    Mibotsu Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 23, 2011
    Balbriggan, Ireland
    i am not sure about disease transfer, i'm sure there might be something. Best bet would be if you bring them in, to keep them in a separate cage, maybe even on the other side of the house, or different rooms
  3. DuranAndy

    DuranAndy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 5, 2010
    Try thoroughly sanatizing yourself in between working with the birds. I always use hand sanatizer after i'm done working with an animal.
  4. joe125

    joe125 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 20, 2010
    I'm mixing up a special batch of quail cooties, just for you. There you go!

  5. gamebirdboy

    gamebirdboy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 29, 2011
    East Tennessee
    Just don't put them in the same pen, keep the quail in a different room.
  6. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend Staff Member

    Mar 21, 2011
    New Mexico, USA
    My Coop
    I have kept Cockateils and Lovebirds for 15 years, quail for 5 years. I have never had any disease transfer to any of my indoor parrots. HOWEVER...ALWAYS wash your hands after handling anything outside in the quail area. There may be several disease that your parrots could catch so you don't want to take any chances.

    As far as for your cold winters, as long as you are not keeping any really exotic quail species or Button Quail, they CAN survive very cold temps. My Bob's have survived Minus 23 degrees last winter, which lasted for 3 nights. Days in the -15 range. You WILL need to add heat lamps however. I run mine when the temps get below 0, and keep them running till the temps stay above 5 degrees. They can take it. And make sure they have proper housing during the winter. No open coops, walls, ceilings, floors and what not. They will need to be shut inside of a coop or pen, with a solid floor, walls and a ceiling with ventilation that is wind proof, water and snow proof. NO WIND, and they will survive.

    And if you must bring them in, just keep them far enough away from your parrots. Wash your hands between visits. If you dirty your clothes with quail, don't let your parrots on your sleeves, lap or where ever the quail have been. Good luck! [​IMG]
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2011
  7. Fat Daddy

    Fat Daddy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 11, 2010

    Joe, could I get a six-pack to go? Man never knows when "special quail cooties" would come in handy!!! [​IMG] Bill
  8. LoveFeathers

    LoveFeathers Out Of The Brooder

    Jul 23, 2011
    Of course they'd be in a separate cage. You sure never mix pet parrots with anything else...He would more than likely maim them. The thing is he doesn't just sit in a cage. He has a few cages and playstands around the house and beyond that is usually just wherever I am. This means there is no part of the house he doesn't at some point go into. I would worry about airborne diseases too, even if I could keep them successfully separated. Of course I always wash my hands and change my clothing in such cases - I have worked in rescue environments and know the protocol. The thing is it is not always enough. I guess I will do more research into what quail are susceptible to, what parrots can pick up from them, and perhaps how to prevent it.

    I also wanted to add that our winters are easily -30 and colder with windchill. I don't think I'd want to risk keeping them outside in that - I have to open the door eventually to feed them and feel the frequent freezing drafts may not be good for their health.

    I'm not sure about the validity of the quail cooties joke though - I'm genuinely and logically worried about passing something from outside onto my indoor parrot through other birds.

    Edited to add: Ducky (my grey) doesn't ever go into the crawl room since the temperature difference is a bit sudden and there isn't any reason for him to go in there. However we spend a lot of time in the "studio" in the basement which is connected right to the crawl room and separated with just a door. I know I'm a bit paranoid and crazy when it comes to my Ducky, but I'm just not willing to take any risks with his health/life, and I wonder if this would constitute one.

    If anyone has any links to information regarding specific illnesses that quail are susceptible to that would be very helpful.
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2011
  9. chrishel

    chrishel Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 28, 2011
    The Windy City
    I have budgies and a lovebird as well as coturnix. The lovebird gets everywhere and into everything. The quail have been hatched from eggs and have never been outside. I still try to keep them apart but the cage birds have free reign of the room and they land on the quail cages and the lovebird has even picked up quail poop once. (I know I'm playing with a loaded gun here.)

    Frankly, the cage birds are 1st class citizens and the coturnix are livestock. They are still my pets, but if I had to choose, I would chose the cage birds over the coturnix in a second. (Sorry, guys!)

    In your case, I would worry that the quail could pick up something from an outside bird and bring it inside to your grey. The quail may not look sick, but they could be carriers. Anything from mites to Newcastle. Since birds hide illness until it's too late, I would be concerned that they might be sick but you not know it.

    Also, coturnix have funny poop, sometimes soft and sticky (and smelly) and sometimes formed with the normal dark and white components. It's hard to use their poop as an indicator of illness like you can with cage birds.

    I can't wait for Ducky to crow like a quail though!

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