M:F ratio question. Coturnix.

Discussion in 'Quail' started by Bettacreek, Jan 22, 2010.

  1. Bettacreek

    Bettacreek Overrun With Chickens

    5,517
    36
    278
    Jan 7, 2009
    Central Pennsyltucky
    So, I know that coturnix should be 1:3-1:5. I plan to keep them 1:5. However, I want two pens, one as a laying pen and the other as a breeding pen. However, since we won't be eating eggs like fiends, I'd like to be able to breed the laying pen when we have enough laying eggs. Would it be possible to change the roo around between the two pens to keep ten hens fertilized if they're split into two different groups? I'd really rather not make a cage to house a single roo when he's on breeding hiatus. [​IMG]
     
  2. babymakes6

    babymakes6 Gifted

    5,832
    24
    278
    Feb 24, 2009
    far west Ohio
    Why not keep them all in the same pen? I had 9 hens/1 roo and it worked just fine. When I only had 4 hens/1 roo, the girls were pretty badly abused. I have a 4x2 foot pen for mine.
     
  3. Bettacreek

    Bettacreek Overrun With Chickens

    5,517
    36
    278
    Jan 7, 2009
    Central Pennsyltucky
    I don't want the eating eggs to be fertile. What was your hatch rate? I could probably do the entire group at a time, either eating eggs or fertile eggs at one time instead of half and half. I was thinking about putting the excess breeding roo with the meaties while they're growing up, that would save me from building an excess cage, so long as the breeder isn't aggressive.
     
  4. babymakes6

    babymakes6 Gifted

    5,832
    24
    278
    Feb 24, 2009
    far west Ohio
    My hatch rate was 90-100%.
    It would probably work to put the roo in with the younger birds. I don't have as much experience as some of the experts, though, so I can't say for sure.
     
  5. SamG347

    SamG347 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 4, 2007
    PA
    I keep 1 to 4 or 1 to 5. But also have kept 1 to 2....1 to 3. As you get down to fewer hens per roo you will have better fertility. But if you have a good breeding male and easily bred hens you can still have great fertility.
    Up to you..I would run 1 to 4.
    [​IMG]
     
  6. darkfur

    darkfur Chillin' With My Peeps

    the thing is, once a hen is fertilized she is fertilized for at least a week. I'm not sure exactly what the timeframe is for quail but for chickens I do know it. What happens is it takes several days for the egg to be formed in the hen - so, day 1 the roo jumps on her, the egg she lays that day has nothing to do with the roo that jumped on her that day. The fertile egg turns up from memory 10 days later. I have a rooster I sometimes lend to a friend who has no roo. You start collecting eggs at least 10 days after the roo goes to work, and after the roo goes home the girls are still laying fertile eggs for up to 2 weeks. I've incubated eggs from her girls from 2 weeks after my roo came back and they were fertile. So you would have to build this into your assumptions of whether eggs are fertile or not. The roo doesn't have to get at the girls every day to fertilize all their eggs either, every 2 or 3 days is sufficient so in fact you could have 2 breeding pens with one roo going from pen to pen every second day (kind of like a plural marriage setup!)
     
  7. Overeasyplz

    Overeasyplz Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 8, 2009
    Leesburg
    Interesting! I did not know this.
     
  8. jerseygirl1

    jerseygirl1 Chillin' With My Peeps

    4,497
    16
    246
    Jun 20, 2009
    Orange County, NY
    Quote:Wow, that's a busy roo
     
  9. bigjohn

    bigjohn Chillin' With My Peeps

    148
    4
    134
    May 24, 2008
    Georgia
    My only input would be that sometimes hens do not like a new roo (or even a change) and will kill him. Coturnix quail are not the best at switching around unless you move ALL birds into a new pen. But you can see, just watch them closely. There will be some eyes missing and other body parts if they start fighting.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by