Got 6 Japanese quail today...

toddy111

Songster
11 Years
Dec 31, 2008
176
0
119
Manchester, England, UK
5 females and one male, 5 weeks old. I'm keeping them in a rabbit hutch kind of thing in the back garden. It's fairly spacious. It has one "bedroom" that I have put straw in and the male is sleeping in there right now. Its well protected from the elements in there. My 5 females are outside in the run bit of the cage which is draughty and cold. I have placed them into the bedroom and they just walk back out. I have had to move some of the straw outside for them. I'm worried because its fairly cold in England right now.

Can females and males not stay in the same room?

I cant find any info about this.
Thanks
 

EmilieD

Hatching
5 Years
Jun 3, 2014
8
0
7
I similarly keep my quail in a rabbit hutch. I was worried with winter coming what would happen since my two older quail would not let the others in the enclosed area. However the first night that approached freezing I found all of them cuddled up in the enclosed area and they've gotten along fine since then. I put quite a bit of work into insulating the hutch and blocking out wind this past weekend and I am hoping they make it through the winter.
 

toddy111

Songster
11 Years
Dec 31, 2008
176
0
119
Manchester, England, UK
Thank you both for your replies. Do you think this might be just a case of not being used to their new home? And anyone with any experience with quails, is it wise to move them into the enclosed room at night to try to encourage them or is it best to just leave them to it?

I dont mind where they sleep, i'm just concerned for their warmth

Thanks
 

yallapilko

Songster
7 Years
Nov 13, 2012
282
28
152
Hi, I'm in the UK too and face similar issues with outdoor quail in winter. The ideal temperature is 16 -23 degrees C. With 14-18 hours daylight. So rabbit hutch is not ideal, unless heated and with extra windows for light and extra lighting. I would certainly move them indoors at night, also they don't move out of the rain, so a cover will be needed if you don't have one. I have added heating and lighting to mine. There is good info in a book Urban Quail Keeping, by Karen J Puddephatt (see my other post with a whole list of good books from a number of sources) which talks about the issues you mention. Good luck!
 

dc3085

Crowing
7 Years
Jan 6, 2013
3,288
356
251
SF Bay Area, California
Their instincts are pretty damaged from thousands of years of captive breeding. They really don't care for nesting boxes or nesting enclosures most times. If you are seeing temps below freezing you should block out all drafts around the cage with plastic sheeting. Make sure to leave some vent space in the plastic near the top to vent the ammonia and nitrogen from their poo however.
 

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