I need info please

Discussion in 'Quail' started by Mattlime, Oct 31, 2012.

  1. Mattlime

    Mattlime Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Bostic, North Carolina
    I am fixing to get at least five bobwhite quail. I have ordered a new hutch that is a top and bottom, however, I have never raised these before and I need all the info and help that I can find. Please help me if you can, I will listen to anyone who will say anything.

    Thanks[​IMG]
     
  2. TwoCrows

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

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    Bobs need about 4 square feet per adult bird. They are seasonal layers, laying from April thru September. They can be aggressive and highly territorial and are paired up male to female, and mate for life. The females can be worse than the males during breeding season, so you may need to separate the pairs during this time to prevent injuries or even death. During the non breeding seasons, they appreciate the covey and you can keep them all together.

    Feed them some sort of gamebird food or a feed that contains 24% to 28% protein. They enjoy similar treats as chickens do...greens, veggies, quartered apples and peaches, peas in the pod, corn on the cob, meal worms, etc... They can be tamed up enough to feed from your hands, but become very stressed if handled. Oyster shell on the side for the layers

    They can tolerate very cold temps, well below freezing, without any added heat, however make sure they are out of the wind, rain, and snow. If you live in a climate with brutal winters, add some grass hay to the floor to keep their feet from freezing. Add a low pan of dirt or sand for dust bathing.
     
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2012
  3. Mattlime

    Mattlime Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Bostic, North Carolina
    The hutch I have for them is pretty big...it can hold at least three or four standard chickens...I plan on putting them in half dirt half grass area at the edge of the woods...I also have bought some hay for the bottom of the hen house...since they do not roost I have it fixed when I can lock them in at night and let them out during the day...I. very personal with my animals...I hand raise them all from chicks that way they will come to me...thank you for you info...it really helped me also what brand of food would use choose...since I am new to this I would like to know
     
  4. TwoCrows

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

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    Purina has a line of gamebird feeds. I use a Manna Pro feed, Gamebird/Showbird feed which my Bobs prefer over the Purina. Your quail will appreciate being able to access the ground and grass. I keep my bobs in a large aviary and they love the freedom. I bring in potted grasses which they devour down to the root!
     
  5. quailchick

    quailchick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I originally used the Manna Pro feed, but I couldn't get it from the feed store, I had to special order it and they didn't have it in a larger bag, it was a very small bag for $10, so I bought a large bag of Purina Starteena for $20 and they have only used 2/3 of the bag in 6 months...In your opinion is there a difference between the feed? And also, do you know of an organic quail feed I could use?
     
  6. quailchick

    quailchick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Good luck! I incubated four Bobwhites, and I had all four hatch. My son and I constantly checked the temperature and humidity and adjusted it accordingly. We have a hovabator with auto turner. It worked well. If you make sure to check the temp and humidity throughout the day, you should do well. Also use two or three thermometers in case one of them is not working correctly. Temperature and humidity are so important.

    My last egg had pipped all the way around, but wasn't pushing out, so I read up on whether or not I could pick the baby out of the shell myself and most people said no, that it is natures way of weeding out the bad chicks and that the chick wasn't healthy enough if it couldn't pip itself out. I decided that just the fact that this egg was being incubated not hatched by its mother, I was messing with nature already and the incubator was drying the egg out even though the humidity was perfect for hatching. So I picked the chick out, and she is now 7 months old and very healthy. So my advice is if one of the eggs has pipped most or all of the way, but isn't finishing up after three or four hours, pick them out. I know some people will say not to, but I know my quail would have died had I not done it, and she is doing great now; she is the one my only male mated with!

    My other advice is once they go into the broooder, make sure you get the temperature right and check it often.

    What incubator are you using?

    What questions do you have so far?
     
  7. Mattlime

    Mattlime Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 30, 2012
    Bostic, North Carolina
    I am not incubating eggs I have a friend that raises them and is going to sale me a few...I want to get three females and two males...do you think that I could do that in a cage that large...I have incubated chicken eggs before, but never quail I will one day if the hen will not...as for the food thanks do you know what stores carry it because our local feed and seed only has 20% protein nothing more...the quail i am getting are nine weeks old I believe...thanks for all your comments and help [​IMG]
     
  8. quailchick

    quailchick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Keep in mind that the mating birds will have to be kept in cages separate from the others during the mating season. One male to one female. I have been told that during the winter they can usually be all together. Right now, I have my one male and one female in one cage, and two females in the other cage right now. I might try putting them all together next month.

    So if you get two males, you will have to put them with their chosen mates in separate cages. Twocrowsranch...can you verify this please?

    The males are going to choose one female and mate only with her. The females that are left out might get violent with the others. That is what happened to me. One of the females that was left out was attacking the mating female at 4 months. At five months old the mating female started laying eggs. She is the only one that laid eggs so far.

    I have two guinea pig cages for them. They are 20X40. I really want to get something larger for them though and I am planning on purchasing something soon. I have them indoors because I am not allowed to have them outdoors where I live (in a mobile home park). Twocrowsranch said about 4 square feet per bird is recommended.
     
  9. Mattlime

    Mattlime Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 30, 2012
    Bostic, North Carolina
    All mine will be in the same cage however it has a lower and an upper and I could just shut it off and have one set on top and another on bottom...so I need to only get two males and two females then...
     
  10. quailchick

    quailchick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well, what is your plan for the quail? You only need males if

    a) you want to breed them

    b) you want males because they are pretty! LOL

    You really don't need males if you just want them for eggs.

    Personally, I think the males are so pretty, I would like another one. I am thinking about getting some Snowflake Bobwhites next. Have you seen them? They are gorgeous!

    You really need to be able to separate them because Bobwhites are aggressive birds. One of my females was attacking my mama bird. She was bloody on the back of her head and neck. I had to put hydrogen peroxide and neosporin on her for weeks.

    Also, if you have chickens, keep in mind not to cross contaminate. Chickens carry diseases that quail have no protection from. If you visit the chickens, do not visit the quail until you have changed clothes (and shoes if you are walking into the quail pen). I don't have chickens, but I always wash my hands before touching the quail or anything in their cage. I also wash my hands afterward too.
     

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