First time hatching Button Quail!

Discussion in 'Quail' started by ChickieBooBoo, Dec 13, 2010.

  1. ChickieBooBoo

    ChickieBooBoo Cold Canadian Chick

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    I've hatched chicks and ducklings before, but never any Quail! I just want to run this by everyone to make sure I'm not doing something wrong [​IMG]

    - After they hatch move them to a brooder with an old towel on the floor
    - 100 F for the first week
    - I am going to be feeding them Turkey starter because my feed store doesn't have Gamebird starter, it has to be unmedicated though
    - Tiny water dish with marbles or something in it so they don't drown

    I think I got everything, at least for the hatching part [​IMG]
     
  2. Rozzie

    Rozzie Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 14, 2010
    Quote:You will need to grind their food smaller. Crumbles are not small enough for buttons. If you have an electric coffee grinder, you can clean it VERY well & use it to grind it down more. It should be almost like cornmeal in consistency.

    They need to eat and drink very quickly after they hatch. They cannot wait like chickens can. They need to be eating and drinking within the first 24 hours. The sooner they start, the better. They do not have the reserves that chicken chicks have.

    Your local TSC will probably have quail waterers. Even those are too wide and deep for button quail babies. I have some of those little flattened craft marbles. I find that these stand up nicely on edge in the quail waterer. I don't PACK it tightly, but I do put quite a few in. This helps reduce chilling. Button quail babies WILL die quite easily if they get wet during the first few days.
     
  3. ChickieBooBoo

    ChickieBooBoo Cold Canadian Chick

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    Quote:You will need to grind their food smaller. Crumbles are not small enough for buttons. If you have an electric coffee grinder, you can clean it VERY well & use it to grind it down more. It should be almost like cornmeal in consistency.

    They need to eat and drink very quickly after they hatch. They cannot wait like chickens can. They need to be eating and drinking within the first 24 hours. The sooner they start, the better. They do not have the reserves that chicken chicks have.

    Your local TSC will probably have quail waterers. Even those are too wide and deep for button quail babies. I have some of those little flattened craft marbles. I find that these stand up nicely on edge in the quail waterer. I don't PACK it tightly, but I do put quite a few in. This helps reduce chilling. Button quail babies WILL die quite easily if they get wet during the first few days.

    I only have 5 eggs in the bator so can I just grind enough feed for them with a small spoon or something? I like the Quail waterer idea, I wasn't 100% sure how I was going to do that.

    What should the humidity for hatching be? Oh, and a few days ago the bator ran dry for about a day while I was at school, will the eggs still be ok? It went down to about 20%
     
  4. Rozzie

    Rozzie Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 14, 2010
    About 50% humidity is fine. It will take 16 - 17 days. Lock down is at 13 days.

    If your eggs were only low on humidity for a while then I imagine they'd be okay. I might go up a hair extra on humidity for a couple of days to help compensate a little. The eggs are so tiny that they can dry out really fast.

    What kind of floor does your incubator have? If it has wire, you need to put something in so that they can't get caught in it. Little button quail babies are terribly tiny. They can fall right through 1/2 inch hardware wire, so you will need a solid sided brooder, or one that has wire the size of screen. A Rubbermaid tub is good, but you will need to make a cover for it.

    If you go to the top of the quail forum, and click on the first thread, there is a list of important quail threads. One of them has a lot of info you'll need, condensed to a very brief version.

    Do you have a blender? You could probably put a bit of food in that, or in a food processor, and grind it fine. I think it might be hard to do with a spoon. You could probably use a mortar and pestle, if you have one, or put it in a bag and beat it with a hammer or a rubber mallet. An thing that you can do to get the pieces tiny is good.

    What protein food is your turkey starter? Do you have a Tractor Supply or Orscheln's near you? If you do, they may have 5 pound bags of Manna Pro game bird feed. It is in bright yellow bags and is usually near the quail and chick feeders and the small bags of grit. This would be enough for a few button quail for a long time. With 30 adults, mine can go through one of those in a week or so! When they are grown, a pair of them will eat about a quarter cup or so a day of feed. Some of my pairs eat more, but those are the ones where the females are the best layers. Some eat a little less. They'll drink about that much water, too. Mine go through from 1/4 to 3/8 cup a day for each pair. I use little 1/2 cup sized specialty canning jars so I have a pretty good idea of how much they go through. (I had a lot of these left from a project many years ago.) Some of the feed amount is probably from them spilling it down in their bedding.
     
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2010
  5. ChickieBooBoo

    ChickieBooBoo Cold Canadian Chick

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    I dont know what the protein level is for the Turkey starter, I've never bought it before. I was just planning on getting it with as much protein as possible. I do have a blender that I can use for grinding up food, should it be almost a power? Do you think a large petstore or something might carry Gamebird feed? My feed store only sells it in 20kg bags, which is fine because I'll just use the rest for the Turkeys next years.

    My incubator has a black hatching tray with small holes in the bottom, I usually just put some papertowel down for the chicks.

    I'll take another look through the Quail section, thanks Rozzie!
     
  6. ruthless

    ruthless Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mount Vernon, Mo
    To grind a small amount of food I have used a can of veggies and a ziploc bag. Just put the food in the ziploc. I don't usually close the bag just be careful to keep the crumbs towards the bottom.

    Then roll a can of food over it and over it until the food is small as you want it. Of course, it takes awhile but works if you don't have a grinder or blender and don't want to buy one.

    I have also used a spoon or hammer or any thing that you can put pressure on with. But if you put the food into a bag before crushing then it does not go all over and you loose it.

    I like the can because it does more quicker and is easier to hold and roll.
     
  7. ChickieBooBoo

    ChickieBooBoo Cold Canadian Chick

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    Quote:thats a good idea, I think I'll try both way of crushing the food to see which one works best.
     
  8. ra

    ra Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Arkansas
    I hatched 3 out and they are doing great!I have one more in another bator! The babies are the cutest thing I have ever seen! I used a very shallow tupperware lid to water them and they are doing great with it! They are all different colors!But I don't know which they are.[​IMG] I use a small food processor to grid the food!
    [​IMG]
     
  9. ChickieBooBoo

    ChickieBooBoo Cold Canadian Chick

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    Quote:I cant wait for mine to hatch! [​IMG]
     
  10. kingmt

    kingmt Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I do not raise buttons so take it for what it is worth. I use the crumbs & add a little water to it. It not only makes it easy to eat but (Coturnix) quail seem to be quite dumb so they get a little bit of moister until they find the water.

    As for drowning in a quail water I didn't think a gnat could do that but then again like I said before "quail seem to be quite dumb.
     

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