genetic diversity

Discussion in 'Quail' started by danparker77, Mar 14, 2015.

  1. danparker77

    danparker77 New Egg

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    Hello all. I am looking into getting some some coturnix quail for meat and eggs. My battle plan is a dozen females and 4 males starting out. I will split the 12 females into two groups with two males in each group.

    Looking at a completely self sustainable flock, I am worried about inbreeding depression after a while.

    If both colonies are unrelated could I, after a while just switch the males to the opposite colony? If I did this every few years would it offer enough genetic diversity?

    Any thoughts would be appreciated. I used the search function but without much luck. Any one have any experience? Thanks in advance!
     
  2. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend Staff Member

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    You have too many males for these females. A good ratio is one male to 5 to 7 hens. So you might keep only 2 males, 1 for each group of 6 females.

    You can breed the same birds and their offspring for quite a while before inbreeding becomes an issue. It takes years to contaminate the breeding lines. And yes, every few years you might switch males and females around or bring in new stock.

    The thing you want to do is cull any bird or do not hatch any offspring from a bird that has any undesirable traits...whether that be mental for physical. Don't use birds that are aggressive or have other nervous habits, don't use hens that lay funky eggs, hens that become egg bound, or have had ANY genetic defects. With each successive offspring, things exacerbate themselves and grow worse each time.

    Good luck with your breeding program and welcome to BYC!
     
  3. danparker77

    danparker77 New Egg

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    Gotcha, only two males and cull out anything undesirable. Thank you for the help and the welcome.

    How many eggs from 2 separate sources should get me, at least, the starting numbers?
     
  4. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend Staff Member

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    I would start with at at least 2 separate sources. As for how many eggs, it depends on how many birds you wish to keep. Some will be breeders, some you may eat and others you just might keep for the fun of it.

    Once you get rolling, you will figure out exactly how big you want to expand.
     
  5. Fat Daddy

    Fat Daddy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My last setting of shipped corurnix eggs was 30. 20 hatched and netted 11 hens and 9 roos. The hatch was good for mailed eggs and the hen to roo ratio could have just as easily went the other way..... Good luck, Bill
     
  6. danparker77

    danparker77 New Egg

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    Fat Daddy, where did you get your shipped eggs from?
     
  7. Fat Daddy

    Fat Daddy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Last edited: Mar 14, 2015

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