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Is having excess males detrmental?

Discussion in 'Quail' started by ssbs, Sep 17, 2010.

  1. ssbs

    ssbs Songster

    Jun 7, 2010
    Is there a problem with having more then one male to each 3 females??

    I haven't noticed a problem with them until this morning, they were out of food and when I fed them the males started fighting. Not blood and guts or anything but pecking and chasing. I'm not even sure yet what I've got, I'll have to check them and see how many boys I have

  2. Stellar

    Stellar The Quail Lady

    Feb 6, 2010
    Tampa Bay
    I try not to have too many males together. Certain colors get along better than others, in my opinion. I have 2 males and 8-9 hens in each large aviary type cage, and the eggs have come out fertile and no fighting with males. Some cages have 3 males...I have a bachelor pen..that pen can get a little bloody at times....I have to separate some males at times of quarrel. If I give them a lot of enrichment (sand, lettuce, treats), and make sure they have food and water at all times, I do not lose a male. I keep extra males so I can switch them in my breeding room and in case I have a snake attack (some rat snakes manage to get the males because the males are protection the hens). If I have a HUGE excess of males, I take them to the auction, but that is rare.
  3. ()relics

    ()relics horse/dog shrink

    Jan 4, 2009
    I have found that eventually males will begin to fight with each other. They grab each other by the back of the head, similar to the way a rooster grabs a hen when he "is doing his thing"...Soon enough the males will start to have bare heads and sometimes bloodied backs. Once there is any sign of blood the other birds target the "bleeder" and kill him. I always keep all my new hatchingling males seperate until I can determine if any of them will be used as breeders, then the extras are marketed or used for dog training before they get too unruly.
  4. sonew123

    sonew123 Poultry Snuggie

    Mar 16, 2009
    onchiota NY
    Males need a 1:10 ratio 10 hens per 1 rooster...They will fight and it will get ugly and the hens health would be in jeapordy-overmating and such not good at all. I could even go 1:6 I have it its fine but those are in breeding pens-where another roo cant get in to fight...
  5. lagpmgdsls

    lagpmgdsls Songster

    Apr 6, 2009
    Quote:uuuhhhmmmm.....with quail the ideal ratio is 1:4-5. 1 male to 4-5 females.
  6. shelleyd2008

    shelleyd2008 the bird is the word

    Sep 14, 2008
    Adair Co., KY
    Quote:Wrong species sonew [​IMG]

    The problem with having too many males in your pens is that it decreases fertility because the males are fighting the other males off, plus it increases the chances of fighting in general. Personally, I wouldn't put less than 3 females with 1 male, and I think that number is too low for one.
  7. 95yj

    95yj Songster

    Nov 25, 2009
    Central Vermont
    What i've found is that if you keep them in cages then you need a really high female to male ratio, or just keep it one male per cage. If the quail are in an aviary type setting then you can push the numbers and keep a lower female:male ratio. I think many people have issues because they read that you can keep quail in a 1 sq ft per bird settup, while this is true you should only have 1 male in each cage or other environment, or a very large settup with a very large number of quail. The lower the square footage per bird the lower the number of males that should be kept together and the higher the probability of fights breaking out. Using the general theory an 8 sq ft cage should hold 2 males and 6 females, however in a cage this tight it probably wouldn't be a good idea to keep the males this tight, it might work great for some, but often the males will start fighting on and off. In a 20 sq ft settup the general practice says you could house 15 females and 5 males, the same ratio of males:females:square ft as the eight foot cage. Going against all practicle knowlege the bigger settup with more males can actually work better. I have to go to work, so i can't explain further, and i know alot of people are going to disagree, but these are just my findings and my opinions, take em with a grain of salt if you don't like them.

  8. Whitehouse Quail

    Whitehouse Quail Songster

    Jul 1, 2009
    I have kept pairs of coturnix while trying to get some colors, and it worked fine. The male and female both were happy. No pecking, and high fertility.

    Jus' sayin. [​IMG]
  9. wpalmisano

    wpalmisano Songster

    Aug 11, 2010
    IMO, and as a breeder, 1 male to 3 hens is optimal, but you could stretch it to 5 hens per rooster in a colony cage. Too many roosters only leads to fighting among the males, and the fertility of the eggs suffers because everyone is distracted. Also, you will be feeding birds you don't need. They will also "harass" the hens to death trying to mate. 1:3 to 1:5 is the generally accepted ratio. If I find a hen and rooster who are pretty birds, and seem to be "getting along" I will put them into a 1:1 situation in a breeder cage during the spring and summer.
  10. Buttercup Chillin

    Buttercup Chillin Songster

    Oct 27, 2008
    SouthEast TX
    With my Jumbo Browns its not the males, but the females. Everytime it storms I loose somebody, could be male or female. My Big Bad Bertha goes Bonkers and goes on a rampage. I think part of her problem is that she wants to brood and I am not letting her. Normally these guys are pretty mellow.

    But, watch out for the girls too. It's not just the boys that get into fights. I think we just have to watch and see what happens when we put them together and be prepared to loose a few until they settle.

    95 yj: I have read the same many times in various books and on the internet from different breeders. So you aren't the only one saying it. Don't know why it works but it seems to. I think its the Covey thing and they have room to have some personal space when needed.

    Coarse I also read that the males are active from like 11Am to 3PM. Ha, mine are active during all daylight hours, so probably night time hours, too. No wonder my girls go bonkers. Right now I have a 1:6 ratio, we had 2 storms last week.

    I haven't decided yet if I am going to keep extra males with my colored Coturnix. Now I don't for my Jumbos. I could change my mind at any time though.

    In basically 8 weeks you can have New Males. So unless you have extra males that are really good, (looks, structure, etc.) why keep extras?
    That is what I am wondering. I have been reading the old old posts and I haven't come across the answer to that yet.

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