Female coturnix bullying male

Discussion in 'Quail' started by Knyfe, Oct 21, 2019.

  1. Knyfe

    Knyfe Chirping

    Nov 22, 2012

    We have 6 female and 1 male coturnix quail living together. They have plenty of space (coop is 3 floors with food + water + a sand tub for bathing on both the top and bottom floors), oyster shell, some hiding space, etc.

    Speckles (our male), Rogue (our aggressive female), and 2 other hens were hatched together, the last 3 girls having been added to the flock a month or so later. No problems with anyone getting along until now.

    So, two days ago I noticed Speckles looking kinda sickly, hanging out away from the other birds, fluffed up and hunched over. He was standing on one leg, looked like he was favoring it, and he had some feathers torn out on his back and his bum looked red. My guess is that he got sick, felt weak, and when Rogue saw this she picked on him, tore out some feathers and maybe got his leg. I closed off the top floor of the coop for him to recover. By the end of the day he looked a lot happier and was very eager to go back downstairs, but I kept him separated until the next morning to give him extra time.

    Next day he kept trying to go downstairs, but Rogue would chase him up. Some of the other girls kept him company on the top floor when she wouldn't let him down.

    Today we're doing some cleaning in the house and had to move them into a smaller, temporary cage (only for the day, will move them back home tomorrow). He tried to mount her when they got in the cage, but she didn't let him and started chasing him, kept chasing him around until I separated them. She pulled out some feathers on his head and all the running around looks like it might be disrupting the other girls. I haven't seen anyone else give either of them trouble.

    Right now I have Rogue separated within the larger cage, so she can still see everyone else, but can't get to them. Only been an hour or so but much more peaceful now. Will be keeping an eye on them for any other conflict.

    Not really sure where to go from here. Any advice is appreciated.
    Claire A and Chip76 like this.
  2. TurtletheCoturnix

    TurtletheCoturnix Chirping

    Sep 7, 2019
    Are they molting? Molting can make birds go crazy sometimes.

    If they aren't, you can:
    1. separate Rogue for a while, try to tame her or give her lots of treats and attention (don't let her see the others) then put her back together and see what happens
    2. If that doesn't work, split the cage into two, and basically turn the cage into two separate ones, or build a new one. Maybe get Rogue a friend.
    3. If you don't want to do that, then you can find a new home for her, or she can be a nice dinner for you guys.:p

    But, then again, you should only try these if they're your last resort. I'm not an expert.
    Claire A likes this.
  3. Kiki

    Kiki Quail Pusher

    Jul 31, 2015
    Houston, TX
    My Coop
    Can you post a few photos of your cage?
    Claire A and TurtletheCoturnix like this.

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