Coturnix behavior and sounds

Discussion in 'Quail' started by kahlertm, Feb 7, 2011.

  1. kahlertm

    kahlertm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 28, 2010
    Durango, Colorado
    Now, I have read the stickies and they are awesome. I have tremendous respect for some of the heavy hitters here who are always ready to help. It is the business I have been in my entire career with animal protection, and hats off to you. I think you people are the bomb. I continue to do so with cats and dogs like you...

    So, I am a behavior person, animal behavior. I am interested in what the sounds mean and the movements mean in relation to the development or stress level in the birds. I am speaking of Coturnix here.

    I hear a lot of "purr" sound come from my females (4-5wks) Is that sound what it seems to entail? Sort a comfort or chortle to friends in the same cage? Or is it a coming of age noise?
    I looked up and listened to the female "ready to lay" sound that was a link on the sticky (thank you, a good one).
    Notice a low almost throaty growl or inhaled deep sound from the male of the same age and he is starting to try a crow.

    I hear you speak of them crowing at night. Is this the normal pattern of a quail..to crow at night? or is it all the time (day and night) in the breeding season?


    Handling-
    When I need to move them, even though they are handled regularly, they are flighty until put down then they calm. Seems logical and normal.. Even the tamest ones are a bit spazzy when a hand is coming at them in the cage. Out of the cage, interestingly I can come down over them with a hand and they are cool with it.

    I notice that fecal matter becomes foamy when the bird is frightened or stressed. Seem on cue to you? Then it goes back to being a pebble after they settle.


    If allowed out, my little female (one of em) runs or walks curiously to find herself in corner somewhere, where I go get her. Interestingly, they could give a hoot about the dog and or cat (although I protect like a tiger). I think they have been habituated to the staring at this point, from both cat and dog...

    Any other noise or behaviors I should be aware of that I need to get ready for. The stickie did handle it pretty good...
     
  2. Robo

    Robo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 15, 2010
    Knoxville,TN
    Sounds pretty normal, anything a coturnix does is normal so unpredictable... They crow like crazy at night if you have lighting on them. When the lights go out they start screaming, especially the ones in the garage. The purring sound you speak of is normal too, they will purr to eachother. Mine sound more like a frog chasing a cricket though. When they are stressed they will flush to the top of the cage and pace frantically. Crazy birds![​IMG]
     
  3. Petej

    Petej Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 6, 2010
    PDX area
    What you describe for behavior is totally normal...
     
  4. joe125

    joe125 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 20, 2010
    What is the hens "I'm ready for some loving" call, and "I just drooped an egg" call?
     
  5. joe125

    joe125 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 20, 2010
    Quote:
     
  6. kahlertm

    kahlertm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 28, 2010
    Durango, Colorado
    Joe125,
    I think you asked if I was sure that the quail were habituated to the dog and cat staring.

    My answer would always be no. Never sure, and never safe. I think it safe to ask you guys if the sounds they are making are normal and what you have associated them with. If you think that the sounds are fear or anxiety based due to being near a cat or dog, that is good information to me. I keep them away for the most part. But....I do house the little trio in our family rec room where all creatures of the family meet to lounge talk, surf internet, play video games.

    I wanted my quail to be used to activity, because they "belong" to a 5 yr old who wants to take them to Fair and share them with 4-H.

    So thanks for question about "being sure"... it is a perfect one. It is why I am here. Will keeping the quail in a busy environment (busy come about 6am to 8am and then 3pm till bed time) desensitize them or stress them and keep them from laying sooner, growing out well (even with good protien suppliment, GBstarter, alfalfa fines..etc. Natural lighting is starting to be applied to with a large double glass door in that room. Boy howdy do they enjoy that.
    This little trio will be our quatro purpose birds..pet, food, 4-H/open class show, learning. (children under 8yrs in 4-H are considered "clover buds" and can show open class and come to meetings to share).

    On this topic I have also been keeping tabs on the Co-op thread and reading Buttercupchillen's observations of her female and male behavior in the development, and mating behaviors. She has really, really studied her birds (as have the rest of you). I took note of some of her and ya'll's statements about their behavior around devolopment and mating.

    Thank you for responding. Any (really ANY) other observations about behavior help me to understand the need of the animal. What will I do different next time round???? I am sure I will do it better with your help and guidance.

    Tonya
     
  7. joe125

    joe125 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 20, 2010
    I just asked if one was sure.

    Are you sure you know what you doing. It's a fair question.

    Yes...I have been keeping my eye on buttercupchillin's answers, and I'm under-impressed. Could just be a "ME" thing. I don't know.
     
  8. kahlertm

    kahlertm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 28, 2010
    Durango, Colorado
    That was supposed to be a question. The stress part. I was asking you guys if it is stress that I am hearing, in their noises or normal noises. The thing I do intend to do by keeping them handled and near humans and the other family animals, is get them used to us.

    So no, I don't intend to stress them. In fact I was wondering out loud with you, if I would alter their growing out well or laying cycle by having near the family rather than out in a pen and not handled much.

    Am I sure I know what I am doing? I know that I am trying to study, read, talk with you guys and find out as much about the Coturnix as I can. So, no I am never sure all the way, especially with animals. I have to ask those with experience and observe my own, study, etc.

    Did you want to redirect me in someway by asking if I knew what I was doing? I am open [​IMG] Always learning. Unimpressed or underimpressed. I would like to know what behaviors or observations you would see or do differently. I am a curious person, want to know all angles of what would be good caretaking, for a better animal.

    So... no, I never want to intentionally put an animal through stress, I was bumping our current housing situation off of you guys to see what you think certain noises and behaviors are, and asking for what YOU think sounds and actions of the Coturnix mean. I brought up the observation about not giving a hoot about the cat and dogs near, to see if anyone else had Coturnix that were quite used to other types of animals on the farm in the home. They sit down on a soft chair near the dogs and fall asleep. I figure that is a sign of not being too stressed...

    That stress comment was simply me not re-reading my post before sending and adding in a question mark or stating it differently.

    The one thing I wish we could put together is a list of typical Coturnix behaviors in the stickies, along with what it is generally thought to be associated with.
    ie:
    Purring sound- assumed comfort or communication with others in pen
    Crow- Onset approx 5 wks indicating sexual maturation and call for females, territory
    Hiding- Stress, pressure from something in environment , can indicate aggression from other birds in pen

    That's what I was after from you more experienced Coturnix folks. That's all my post is about really.
    Tonya
     

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