How do I get my quail to lay?

Small town chicken farmer

In the Brooder
May 30, 2020
28
15
39
I have 10 bobwhite quail (6 male and 4 female) I know the ratios of male/female are messed up but they live outside in 4 foot grasses and aren’t breeding this time of year. That being said, I need chicks to increase my breeding stock and brought 3 female and 1 male inside a cage in an unheated shed but I have a light on them. Will the low winter temps (in the north Midwest) prevent them from breeding even though I have a light on them? Also, any commercial brooder recommendations that maximize efficiency? Thanks!
 

Small town chicken farmer

In the Brooder
May 30, 2020
28
15
39
I have 10 bobwhite quail (6 male and 4 female) I know the ratios of male/female are messed up but they live outside in 4 foot grasses and aren’t breeding this time of year. That being said, I need chicks to increase my breeding stock and brought 3 female and 1 male inside a cage in an unheated shed but I have a light on them. Will the low winter temps (in the north Midwest) prevent them from breeding even though I have a light on them? Also, any commercial brooder recommendations that maximize efficiency? Thanks!
Thought I should mention the light is on a timer from 530am to 830pm. Should I adjust this?
 

007Sean

Face it, Embrace it, Ace it, Replace it
Premium Feather Member
6 Years
Oct 25, 2015
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Since Bobwhites are seasonal breeders, it's not a good idea to artificially stimulate breeding and egg laying. Breeding and egg laying is hard on them, it will shorten their life spans by inducing artificial conditions.
 

Small town chicken farmer

In the Brooder
May 30, 2020
28
15
39
Since Bobwhites are seasonal breeders, it's not a good idea to artificially stimulate breeding and egg laying. Breeding and egg laying is hard on them, it will shorten their life spans by inducing artificial conditions.
I understand this but I need more birds before spring so I can scale up next year. I have a list of buyers who will need 1200 birds next year and 4 females are not going to get me the size of breeding stock that I need unless I start now. I do have a small group that are still living outdoors, but they are mostly male and won’t me much good when breeding season comes around anyway.
 

Eonflux

Chirping
Jul 15, 2020
75
122
68
You can’t seriously expecting 4 females bobwhite to give you 1200 chicks by next spring are you? Even with coturnix that’s impossible. Please do your research, bobwhite are seasonal layer and they don’t lay as much as cotix.
 

hysop

Back from hiatus (11/24/21)
Premium Feather Member
Sep 16, 2019
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SW Georgia
Could you try to buy more females? I’m sure there’s people still selling some. Even if they start laying now, the incubation period and maturity will take a while.

Let us know what ended up working for you 😊
 
Oct 16, 2020
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I don't know about bobwhites, but I'm trying to go from 20 to 80 coturnix by summer, and even THAT means hatching every egg I can get. (I don't use artificial light.)

Perhaps you need to adjust your expectations. Either that, or get some hatching eggs.
 

Small town chicken farmer

In the Brooder
May 30, 2020
28
15
39
You can’t seriously expecting 4 females bobwhite to give you 1200 chicks by next spring are you? Even with coturnix that’s impossible. Please do your research, bobwhite are seasonal layer and they don’t lay as much as cotix.
Sorry I should have specified. I will obviously be buying more quail but I need these quail to start laying ASAP.
 

Small town chicken farmer

In the Brooder
May 30, 2020
28
15
39
I don't know about bobwhites, but I'm trying to go from 20 to 80 coturnix by summer, and even THAT means hatching every egg I can get. (I don't use artificial light.)

Perhaps you need to adjust your expectations. Either that, or get some hatching eggs.
The guy who gave the original eggs to me trains dogs with the quail he buys, but doesn’t need the eggs so i also get ~45 eggs a day from him in the springtime but I will need to start breeding over the winter for more breeding stock
 

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