Is it just my patience that needs fixing? Coturnix not laying yet.

Discussion in 'Quail' started by RumAndCoconuts, Feb 17, 2015.

  1. RumAndCoconuts

    RumAndCoconuts Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 30, 2014
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    Hi everyone.
    My quail turn 13 weeks this Thursday and I've not seen an egg yet. In fact I've not seen the males shagging them either. (is it like chickens that they only shag when the hen is ready?)
    I'm a first time quail owner and hatched these ones. I've not even tasted a quail egg yet!
    This is my scenario.
    I have 9 females and 2 males together.
    I have quite a large outdoor pen. It's not high (15 inches) but it gives them about 9 square feet of covered space and about 22 square feet of outdoor natural space. It is natural ground and still has some rocks and plants like bamboo and orchids and young seedling type trees and grasses in there. a couple of large rocks and small logs for space dividing and a small tire that is filled with sand for dustbathing. The covered area is filled mostly with what is called Casuarina needles which is like a long pine needle.
    The pen is in a cleared area of the jungle (using trees as posts) and it is quiet and away from all buildings and even removed from the chickens area. The only noise they would hear is roosters crowing.
    They have water on tap from a pipe with water nipples and the quail are a good size. Last weighing (about 3 weeks ago they were averaging about 230 grams each. (over 8 ounces)

    The best feed I can get here for them is layer feed and I feed it fermented with some catfood thrown in when I mix it for extra protein. They have a VERY healthy appetite. I feed them two or three times a day.

    Does this all sound good to you? I know it is winter but I'm located on the Tropic of Cancer so the sun is up for 11.5 hours a day. The daylight clearly is a bit more on either side of sunrise and sunset.

    Am I just too impatient? or can you see something that needs fixing. I've read through other queries and I think I tick all the boxes for their needs....except spring fever?
    My only variable is that I have three more hens in another small pen that I raised these ones with. I thought the ratio would be a good one though and kept the largest hens in with the two roos. NO other quail on the island. These are the first.

    Thanks in advance for your input
     
  2. ChickenLegs13

    ChickenLegs13 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If they're not old enough to lay when fall & winter hits they won't start laying until the following spring when daylight hours start increasing. I'm up 11 hours 10 minutes of daylight and my pullets are still not laying. My older quail never quit.
     
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  3. James the Bald

    James the Bald Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 6, 2013
    I wish everyone would give such a great description when addressing a problem. Are these Coturnix? If there was artificial lighting, I could blame the delay of eggs on the lamps being to close, but that's not the case. Hmmm? I'm baffled.
    James
     
  4. RumAndCoconuts

    RumAndCoconuts Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 30, 2014
    Great Exuma, Bahamas
    Hi both,
    So if they've already been laying when winter hits then they could likely carry on through the winter?
    Yes they are Cotnurnix and yes I do have a light but it is just a solar path type light and it is on the far side of where they sleep, not really bright at all.

    I THINK it is just a matter of being ruddy impatient for them to start laying. I've also got chickens that I hatched last September that are getting close to POL and it's soooo difficult to wait, I don't want to wish my life away but ....
    I really want eggs

    I just thought I'd put it out there and see if you could see any obvious blunders. It's all new to me.
     
  5. bnewns

    bnewns Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Wilmington, CA
    I'm seeing ythe same issues. Working on building more friendly cages for them where they get Lots of light
     
  6. RumAndCoconuts

    RumAndCoconuts Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 30, 2014
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    Mine are outside. In really about as natural environment that they could get.... Must be just the shorter days,
    Here's some photos of the pen
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  7. ChickenLegs13

    ChickenLegs13 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 4, 2013
    Lower Alabama

    That's the way mine do it. My layers slow down quite a bit but don't stop laying completely. A 5 hen cage that produces 30+ eggs per week during the summer only produces 10-20 eggs per week during the winter. Honestly, I don't know if this means a hen or 2 stops completely, or if they all lay an egg every other day instead of an egg each day. I have no way of tracking the performance of individual hens.

    The last batch of chicks I raised reach POL about the time the daylight started decreasing last fall. I saved 5 hens for breeders and butchered the rest. Of the butchered ones, about 40 were hens and only 2-3 had yolks inside. The same age hens (12+ weeks) butchered during the summer would have all contained yolks.
    Of the ones I saved, that cage of 5 hens has given me 1 egg almost every day since last Oct. Pretty sure that's only 1 hen laying....

    Regarding the shagging, mine don't shag from Oct-Feb and any eggs laid then are infertile. My chickens are always shagging like there's no tomorrow so I hatch chickens in the winter during the quail downtime. My old quail are starting to crow & shag again so I'm fixin to be back in the quail biz again.
     
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  8. RumAndCoconuts

    RumAndCoconuts Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 30, 2014
    Great Exuma, Bahamas
    Some great information in there. Thanks so much. :)
     
  9. dc3085

    dc3085 Chillin' With My Peeps

    You may end up running lights all year around with how short your days are there.

    I don't have problems with fertility in the winter but the weather where I live is very mild too.
     

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