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HELP Quail stopped laying....

Discussion in 'Quail' started by SandpointQuail, Sep 15, 2016.

  1. SandpointQuail

    SandpointQuail New Egg

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    Sep 15, 2016
    I have a few dozen Jumbo Coturnix Quail that I started this spring. The have been laying a couple months and then I moved them from Itty bitty cages to a nice big chicken tractor so they can have a more natural habitat. It has wire on all sides, and one end is covered so they have protection. For 2-3 weeks now I have been getting 1 or 2 eggs a day. Can I expect production to pick back up or is something else bothering them to keep production down? Thanks for the help in advance.
     
  2. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend... Staff Member

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    Hello and welcome to BYC!

    Any changes in their environment can make them stop laying. Moving them, predators lurking, too much noise, things that cause stress, etc...And sometimes it can take them a month or more to feel confident enough to get back to laying. Make sure they are in a quiet spot away from loud noises, barking dogs, lawn mowers, no night time lurking predators, too much light all night long. Any of these is stressful enough to shut their laying machines off completely. Hens are vulnerable while laying and if they are under any stress at all, they won't lay. Make sure they are eating their quail feed and not filling up on things with lower protein, not enough protein will stop the yolks from being released. Give them the most quail comfort you can, if you have a roo in with these hens...keep the ratio proper at 1 roo to 5 to 7 hens, let them adjust to their new environment and keep them on a good diet and they should bounce back to laying well.
     
  3. SandpointQuail

    SandpointQuail New Egg

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    I was hoping they would only take a week off laying :( I have 1 roo per 4-5 hens and it's always a possibility that predators may lurk at night. They may even think I am one. I have them near the chicken coop which I go out and lock up after dark. They are eating the same amount of feed as before, and the feed is the same. The location is only 10 feet from where they were previously. Would adding some boxes to hide in help them feel safer? I put a few pine branches in yesterday for them to hide in.
     
  4. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend... Staff Member

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    Great the you added a bit of brush for cover, this will help them feel safer being able to hide under. I like to offer shelter for my quail, but you might have to train them to use the boxes. Some quail love to use coops at night, some dont. But you could always physically put them in at night. The safer they feel, the quicker they will get back to laying.
     
  5. Oreo quail

    Oreo quail Out Of The Brooder

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    Alos things to rule out: snake eating eggs, other predators such as rodents getting eggs, hidden eggs, lack of 14 hrs light, kids or neighbors getting eggs, or however the mind can wander [​IMG]
     
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  6. eHuman

    eHuman Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 14, 2016
    Could also be molting with the cooler weather and decreased light depending upon where you live. My 11 breeder hens were giving me 9 eggs a day and it dropped to 2 a day for the last week so far.
     
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  7. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend... Staff Member

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    X2 Molting season is approaching and quail are seasonal layers. Usually the egg laying extends into October for most parts of the country however quick chill downs can shut off the egglaying.
     
  8. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend... Staff Member

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    Also great points!
     
  9. SandpointQuail

    SandpointQuail New Egg

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    I'm not up early enough in the morning to know what time it gets light out but it is getting dark about 7:30 up here in North Idaho. We have had a few nights of freezing weather, I don't think we have any snakes eating things and nobody else can get to my birds. I'll see if I can put a light in there somehow.
     
  10. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend... Staff Member

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    If you are seeing freezing temps of 32 degrees Fahrenheit already, then yes your birds are shutting down for the season. Quail are seasonal layers and dont lay year round. When temps get to freezing, nature tells them eggs will freeze, and their egg laying machines turn off until next spring.
     

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