Natural conditions for coturnix quail (lotsa pics Page Two!)

Discussion in 'Quail' started by iamcuriositycat, Aug 9, 2011.

  1. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    As mentioned in another thread, I've got a male coturnix in a 10 x 10 run (aviary), and am planning to add several females this weekend. It's in a highly shaded area, with some honeysuckle, sprigs of grass, and Virginia creeper. There are two doghouses (one plastic, one wood), areas of straw and areas of compost, a large hay bale that is propped up so that there is shelter under it, and another shelter composed of sticks (not really shelter from rain, but just a visual barrier).

    I enjoy making the area as comfortable and enriched as possible for the boy (and his soon-to-be girls), and am trying to find articles and other information about their natural habitat in order to mimic it as much as possible. Does anyone have links to great articles on this topic?

    Thanks!
     
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2011
  2. 7L Farm

    7L Farm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Do you have a picture of your aviary ?
     
  3. JJMR794

    JJMR794 Overrun With Chickens

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    In The Wild They Are Primarily A Grass Land Dweller... Lotsa Tall Grass?
     
  4. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks, JJMR!

    I'll try to get a picture--but it's not much to look at. I call it an aviary because it has a quail in it, but it's really just a modified dog run. It's a 10 x 10 chain link enclosure with 1/4" hardware mesh secured around the bottom two feet. I worried at first about the larger openings at the top, letting in rats and snakes and such, but we had about 40 quail in there for several weeks last summer and never lost a single one to predation or escape. I did have a close call with the cat recently, when our little guy was sleeping by a gap under the chain link and she reached through and pulled out some feathers. I patched the area with more hardware mesh and then a few other areas that were similarly gappy. I know from experience that a raccoon reaching through will do way more damage than pull a few feathers.

    There's a chain link divider in the middle, which was there for separating breeding groups of ducks, but of course the quail just hops through the gaps, so it's not really a divider for him. I've left it in place, though, in case I want to add hardware mesh and make it into two separate runs at some point.

    The top is covered in welded wire with openings about 2 x 4", and it's 6' high. The bottom has welded wire underneath as well, to prevent digging predation, but there is a thick thick layer of compost and straw and (if I remember correctly) wood mulch under that (probably decomposed by now) that covers the wire, so you wouldn't know it's there just by looking.

    One shelter is just a standard plastic doghouse, with straw on the bottom. The other is a wooden house I actually built for the ducks, with an entry area and then two large nestboxes in the back. It has a sloping wooden roof covered with clear plastic. The eaves on it provide adequate rain protection, and I don't think he goes inside except to eat.

    Like I said, I'll try to get a picture, but it's pretty ugly, lol. Right now I've got to feed my kids and spend some time with the poor neglected darlings. Thanks for the feedback so far!
     
  5. Mibotsu

    Mibotsu Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 23, 2011
    Balbriggan, Ireland
    i would love to see it as well, might not look much to us, but they probably LOVE it
     
  6. JJMR794

    JJMR794 Overrun With Chickens

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    YOU KNOW HE OR THE GIRLS CAN GET THRU THE DIAMOND FENCING ABOVE YOUR HARDWARE MESH RIGHT? I MEAN THEY CAN AND WILL FLY... JUST MENTIONED IT BECAUSE I HATE TO SEE YOU POSTING HERE "OMG! THEY ESCAPED" [​IMG]
     
  7. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend Staff Member

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    My Coop
    JJ is right here in that your roof may not keep them in there at all times. My aviaries are about 6 feet tall on the inside and many times, either one is chasing another or me or something else sneaks up on them, they will flush and hit the ceiling. They will come right out of there. And I know that you have never had predator problems in the past, but once you start keeping quail in there, the poop starts to smell, the critters are going to climb up the fencing. My aviaries are also chain link fencing and the coons and skunks love to climb on the roof all the time. So they can climb right down thru 2"x4" squares. If I were you, I would cover the roof with hardware cloth. You don't want to come out one morning and see your precious birds gone.
     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2011
  8. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Ha ha! I KNEW if I posted pics or a description I was going to get lots of constructive feedback, [​IMG]. And I knew the chain link was going to be the catalyst. :p

    And ya'll are probably right, and I'll get to work on it as I have time. I had 40 quail in there for several weeks last summer, and this guy's been in there all this summer, but I should know from my duck experiences that just because I haven't had a problem yet doesn't mean I won't have one in the future.

    AND I'll try to get some pics in the not too distant future--but it may be this weekend. And maybe I'll have a little bit of the additional hardware wire up by the time I take the pictures and I can say, "look, y'all, I'm following your advice!" :p

    Thank you. Sincerely. It's nice to know people care enough to help with suggestions, even when they're not the ones I want to hear. [​IMG]
     
  9. JJMR794

    JJMR794 Overrun With Chickens

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    dont get me wrong.... chain link is great for keeping bigger stuff out. I have many kennels in use for chicken pens, but to keep smaller stuff in or out [​IMG]. just line it with doubled chicken wire or hardware cloth and you should be good to go [​IMG]
     
  10. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks, will do! I've got plenty of hardware wire left from a big warehouse closing purchase we made a couple years ago, so it's just a matter of cutting & attaching. The main thing is time, but I'll make it my next project out there, so it will get done over the course of the next few weekends.

    [​IMG]
     

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