Hello everyone! I am starting with quails.

MeganM

In the Brooder
5 Years
Apr 26, 2014
14
0
22
I am told Japanese quails are much like chickens as far as husbandry and keeping goes so we are starting with a small flock of 5-6 quails. In the mean time we are working on a cheap, long-term coop building project. My goal is to stay under $100 for the chicken coop and run, so we can spend more money on quality chickens and an incubator! :)

I am working on converting a small dog house for my quail coop. It's nearly done. I removed one roof panel and added hinges so the roof can be lifted to get inside. I'm adding some hardware cloth to the underside of both roof panels so they can be safely lifted on hot days for more ventilation. Our run for the chickens will be 11x15 feet and 8 feet high so we can get inside the run. It's in a very protected area form predators so our only real worry are hawks but we will be enclosing the coop and run from the top too with bird netting. We also have worries about high wind (I live in the high desert and we frequently gets 30-60mph daily winds!) but I will be setting up some wind blocks to cut down on that hopefully!

I am totally new to keeping birds but I hope BYC will help get me prepared for chicken keeping! Our goal is to get our chickens in about 3-4 months, and we will be starting with a few adult layers and purchasing an incubator and fertilized eggs of the breeds we want..

Hope to be around more often!
 

TwoCrows

A Native Raven
Staff member
Premium member
9 Years
Mar 21, 2011
40,944
61,764
1,492
New Mexico, USA
My Coop
My Coop
\

Welcome to BYC!

And congrats on the quail! Japanese quail, or Coturnix quail are they are called are very easy beginner birds to start with. They are easily handled and worked with. First however, you can not keep them with chickens or around chickens. Chickens carry diseases that are lethal to quail. So definitely give the quail their own spaces far enough away from the chickens. And be very careful with bio security. Always wash hands between the species, change shoes if you have walk in aviaries and never share cleaning utensils or feeders/waterers.

If you are wanting eggs for just eating, you do not need roosters. They can be rough on quail. So you can keep all girls. Give them about 2 square foot per bird. Some will tell you 1 square foot per bird is enough, but it is not. (I also keep quail. :) If you ARE interested in fertile eggs, then you have to keep the ratio proper. 1 male to 4 to 7 females. Any less females and the roo will mate the hens to death.

They enjoy run space if you have it for them. I don't like to keep quail on wire, but lots of people do. Just give them space to get off the wire to help prevent bumblefoot and sore feet. So a plywood area in the corner and of course a pan full of dirt or sand for dust bathing. Quail like to bathe daily to keep the skin in good shape and keep the mites at bay.

Don't be afraid to liven up their area with cut branches from trees outside or fake foliage. Quail are ground dwellers and like to hide under brush.

Feed them a high protein feed, something with 24% to 28% protein. Starter or even turkey feed is fine. Provide crushed oyster shell on the side for the layers.

Quail are seasonal layers so will only lay from spring thru fall unless you do force laying with light during the winter. I prefer to give them a break from laying to keep them healthier and live longer.

Definitely stop by our quail section for lots of help! If you have any other questions, feel free to ask. Welcome to our flock!
 

MeganM

In the Brooder
5 Years
Apr 26, 2014
14
0
22
I didn't see that there!! Thanks so much! :D I am excited to get started. We are getting our day-old quail chicks tomorrow!
 

Kelsie2290

Free Ranging
Premium member
8 Years
Feb 18, 2011
36,683
4,863
556
Ohio
Hello :frow and Welcome To BYC! Good luck with your soon to be new quail chicks! They are such cute little birds. You've gotten some great pointers from TwoCrows and the Quail link from sumi on taking care of your Quail.

For the chickens, you might also like to check out the BYC Learning Center, lots of good articles on all aspects of chicken (and other poultry) keeping. https://www.backyardchickens.com/atype/1/Learning_Center And it is always fun to check out your state thread for chicken keeping neighbors and what coops, breeds etc they find work well for your area https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/270925/find-your-states-thread
 

sourland

Broody Magician
Premium member
10 Years
May 3, 2009
94,057
177,307
1,837
New Jersey
MeganM, welcome to BYC - TwoCrows has done a great job of pointing you in the right direction. Good luck.
 

MeganM

In the Brooder
5 Years
Apr 26, 2014
14
0
22
Whoops, didn't see TwoCrow's post!

Thank you VERY much. I had NO idea about the diseases between the two!! I typoed on the first post- the QUAIL'S run will be an 11'x15' space on the ground- no wire here! I like to give my animals as much possible space as I can. I have 3 acres as most of it is empty so space is the one thing I have plenty of! They will be directly in the dirt. I'm forming their space to include a patch of wheat grass that I will grow and switch out often, a sand pit, a dirt area, and a very shallow water pool (but the pool idea may change since I am told chicks may down in it even if the water is only an inch deep ) The chicken coop will be much larger and on the other side of our property (we own 3 acres) so hopefully it will work out! I have a dwarf pomegranate tree growing in the area the quails will go in, and I'll be providing some "toys". We do want them to be able to hatch chicks for meat too so we will be keeping 1 rooster and 5 hens and we may get more later on if it all turns out well in my "starter" period. I have been saving large cut branches for their enclosure to make into perches on stand!

Thank you everyone for the arm welcome!! I'm heading over to the quail area now!
 
Top Bottom