ground dwelling and worming

Discussion in 'Quail' started by Gimpy Quail, Aug 27, 2014.

  1. Gimpy Quail

    Gimpy Quail Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 21, 2014
    We are complete newbies to the idea of keeping quail (we don't even have any yet -- still planning).

    I was hoping we could keep the quail in an outdoor aviary with a dirt floor. We live in the desert in AZ, so our ground is very hard, dry dirt. Along with the quail, we may keep doves and fnches too.

    Is it the eggs being laid on the ground, or the droppings, or what, that could cause a problem with worms? Would I have to worm my quail? Why is not an issue with quail being kept on wire? Or is it?

    I'm just not understanding the worming thing and what, if any, effect it may have on the eggs or the meat.
     
  2. cruisermedic

    cruisermedic Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 11, 2014
    Its more of an issue with them on the ground because they always poop in that confined area. They peck and scratch around looking for food and end up eating parasites. When they are on wire, they can't get to their poop. A "mobile" aviary may help some. But that doesn't jive well with the mesh perimeter like we talked about in the other thread. They naturally will consume some things that are probably not the greatest for them healthwise. But in a confined area the concentration of bad/dirty/contaminated stuff goes up.

    I would think in the area you are in, the heat, sun, and dryness, would help you reduce issues. The poop dries fast. Many parasites need to be moist and cool to stay alive. A raking and clearing of droppings would also help.
     
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2014
  3. dc3085

    dc3085 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Parasites can come from several sources. Most of the worms that infect poultry spend part of their lives in an intermediary host like mice, rats, wild birds, crickets, ants, earth worms, caterpillars, moths, etc. Typically parasite infections come from contact with those sources unless you've had chickens on the same soil in the past few years since chickens often carry them without notice. Cecal worms like those that transmit blackhead can live in dry soil for years waiting for a new host.

    Feces allowed to accumulate on soil can allow disease to incubate. Also birds by nature consume bits of each others feces which is the most common way for disease to spread bird to bird. This is why many people raise their birds on wire. Keeping birds on wire does keep transmission of diseases and parasites to a minimum but they can still contract them living on wire.

    If the floor stays dry and drains well when wet it's probably suitable for keeping quail. I fill the bottom of my ground cages with sand to ensure extra drainage and give them a nice gritty floor for bathing. I've been keeping coturnix on the ground for several years and have never had any parasite problems. I'm prepared to worm my birds at all times (I can pick up several wormers locally) but I don't worm them because different parasites require different medications. There is no one size fits all wormer.
     
  4. HowieNZ

    HowieNZ Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 23, 2013
    Dunedin, New Zealand
    I agree with DC, other things to keep in mind is making the outdoor aviary predator proof, with no wire on the bottom that may make it more difficult. Also do a search for threads on deep litter floors, I remember reading an interesting one.
    Good luck.
     
  5. Gimpy Quail

    Gimpy Quail Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 21, 2014
    Actually this all sounds encouraging. I suspected the dryness here would be an advantage when it comes to keeping parasites under control.

    Cruisermedic suggested the 2' wide mesh barrier on the ground around the perimeter of the aviary. I will also check for that thread on deep litter floors.

    Would having a water feature in the aviary cause issues? I was thinking of having a bubbler rock in there to help keep cool water available for them.
     
  6. cruisermedic

    cruisermedic Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 11, 2014
    Anything to keep clean cool water for them in a dry high temp environment will be a plus. Try to find a way to keep them from pooping it is the problem.

    But my chickens would rather drink the water from the ground when I dump the waterers, than actually drink from the waterer.
     

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