New Heated Quail-Release Thread!

Discussion in 'Quail' started by Omniskies, Jan 3, 2011.

  1. Omniskies

    Omniskies Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,064
    18
    191
    Mar 7, 2008
    Missouri
    I couldn't help myself with the thread title [​IMG]

    Still, let's try to not make this too terribly heated. I'm more interested in ideas than actually planning on doing anything. I plan on digging out a pond this year and planting quail-friendly areas around it, but we're talking about a couple of years before I could even entertain the idea of intentionally letting a bird run loose instead of having one escape by accident.

    Here's my question: do you think that captive-bred quail have a better chance of surviving in the wild if they are hatched and raised by a colony instead of by themselves? I started wondering about this when thinking about captive- vs wild-raised turkeys. A hen will teach her poults everything they need to know to survive, giving them an edge rather than them having to make the same mistakes. Those poults will grow up to teach their offspring what their mother taught them, plus the new things they have learned. I'm firmly convinced this is why we consider domestic turkeys to be sort of dumb and hunters swear that the pesky birds are like feathered out Einsteins: domestic birds are typically hatched and artificially raised every year. They have to start fresh when it comes to learning.

    So would quail that are raised in a flight pen by the covy have a better chance at surviving? Yes, I know they're not out in the wild learning to find food and evade predators and all of that stuff - but they would still be learning. Besides that, if their flight pen had the sort plants they might feed on in addition to their regular food it might help.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. Farmerman

    Farmerman Out Of The Brooder

    47
    0
    22
    Dec 31, 2010
    Ive got no idea, but the idea seems to have merit to me. especially the part about having food in there with them, they would eat if living in the wild. Id include insects they would be likely to find as well, just so they have a taste for them......
     
  3. Buttercup Chillin

    Buttercup Chillin Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 27, 2008
    SouthEast TX
    I assume you are talking about Bob Whites?
     
  4. Omniskies

    Omniskies Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,064
    18
    191
    Mar 7, 2008
    Missouri
    Whoops. Yes - Bobwhites.

    I don't think there's a blessed thing in the world that could convince a Coturnix to survive for a day out in the wild.
     
  5. Robo

    Robo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 15, 2010
    Knoxville,TN
    I had one make it 3 days.
     
  6. _Randall_

    _Randall_ Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 3, 2009
    Grenada, Ms
    Quote:My opinion, for what it's worth..............pen raised quail (Bobwhites, at least) that were turned loose at whatever age will always be vulnerable to being an easy predator meal, or a wing-shooter's easy hit if it came to that, as measured up against a truly wild-born bird. What concludes this, in my opinion, is the fact that my rural / country neighbor a half mile across the way that raises Bobs has flying pens, and releases them for paid hunts throughout the fall/winter is loosing a bird here and there to a dip net around my pens as I "easily" catch them because they think they are "home" when they hear my birds whistling. It goes to show, at least in this case, that pen raised birds know pens with high protein feed and water readily available at all times as the way of life for them. I have one or two to get out occasionly, and you can bet the bank if they fly out and land in a tree, in a thicket, or wherever ...... they're gonna be trying to get back to "their home" by sundown, or at least by daylight the next day - if they survive the night. There may be an exception to this theory, but I'm convinced it's the rule in most circumstances.

    That being said, would they have a better chance of survival being raised in a flight pen as a covey? Personally, I think their natural instinct is programmed to make them "scram" regardless of whether they are alone, or with a group when danger arrives. But again, if they were pen raised from birth until the time of release, they will never have that "wild" escape know-how that the wild birds have.
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2011
  7. JJMR794

    JJMR794 Overrun With Chickens

    7,584
    82
    293
    Mar 2, 2009
    BROOKSVILLE FL
    OMNI IN MY OPINION WHAT YOUR THINKING WOULD OFFER THE BEST CHANCE FOR SURVIVAL.... RAISED BY QUAIL TO BE QUAIL. I MEAN THAT IS NATURES WAY IN THE WILD RIGHT? THE PROBLEMS I SEE WITH IT ARE A FEW.... YOU COULD COVEY BIRDS IN A VERY LARGE FLIGHT PEN THAT IS PLANTED TO PROVIDE AS CLOSE AN ENVIRONEMENT AS NATURAL.... THIS MAY EVEN STIMULATE YOUR GIRLS TO BROOD? WHO KNOWS? BUT THEY WOULD NEED THAT "TRAINER ENVIRONEMNT" TO BE SAFE AND LEARN FROM THE OLDER BIRDS... THIS ENVIRONEMENT WOULD NEED TO BE ABOUT THE SAME AS SECLUDED RAISED BIRDS FOR RELEASE, ONLY WITH MENTORS TO SCHOOL THE LIL GUYS BEFORE THEIR "FINAL EXAM".... PROBLEM IS THE LIL SNOTS ARE SO MEAN IF THE BABIES ARENT ACTUALLY HATCHED AND BROODED BY THE MENTORS THEY WOULD MOST LIKELY KILL THEM. THE ONLY LESSON THEY WOULD LEARN WOULD RESEMBLE A LESSON FROM THE "FACES OF DEATH" VIDEO SERIES.

    I THINK YOUR THEORY IS SOUND... BUT LOGISTICS WILL LIKELY PREVENT IT FROM HAPPENING IN THE REAL WORLD.... IF YOU COULD GET THAT SECLUDED PEN RIGHT, AND JUST BY SHEER LUCK GET SOME MOMMAS WHO FEEL THE URGE TO ACTUALLY BE MOMMA AND NOT EGG DONORS.... WELL THEN YOUR FINAL PRODUCT WOULD HAVE AS GOOD A CHANCE AS ANY. IF IT WERENT FOR THE PESKY MINOR DETAILS... [​IMG]

    ITS AN INTERESTING THEORY FOR SURE..
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2011
  8. Buttercup Chillin

    Buttercup Chillin Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 27, 2008
    SouthEast TX
    What if the older birds were wild Bobwhites? She could work with Fish & Game or whatever its called there, on that. Either breed them with the domestic or give them some hatching eggs from domesticated or cage raised birds to sit and raise in such a natural setting. Might have to give them some extra eggs to sit once they start to sit, or something. I don't know how to work it.

    I read online months ago, about the Japanese working with the Coturnix to plan a new release for Migration when they need to. They found that crossing the Wild Coturnix with the domestic birds and using the F1 generation for a release will work better. The F1 generation from the crossing retain more natural instinct for survival and migration than those that are bred just from domestically raised birds. Wish we would work on getting them in the air on this continent.

    Hope that tidbit helps, somehow. I know Coturnix are not as mean as Bobwhites, but maybe there is a way to do it.
     
  9. SamG347

    SamG347 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 4, 2007
    PA
    Is it possible in my opinion to create a self sustaining WILD population of domestically reared birds....yes but very very slim chances. You have to have conditons 100% right and hope and pray that some of the birds you turned loose have the brooding instinct still in them. All bobwhite will covey but you need the birds you raise to be able to survive and then raise a clutch for the release to mean anything. I have released adult bobwhites around the homestead here and still have heard for 3 summers since bobwhite males calling out in the fields. I also raised and released blueback ringnecks...I raised until 6 weeks old...fed local field grasses and voulenteer wheat...well just 2 summers ago had young ringneck pheasants come up to the house with a turkey hen from down in the field. These birds were birds of that year and I would have to think possibly 2nd generation birds from ones I had released. All these situations occured after I had released birds..keep in mind in all the years prior to me doing this we havent seen ringnecks around...flushed them with the dogs...or heard more than a seldom bobwhite call.
    Soo I'm just praying my released birds I mean "escaped" birds are now breeding and surviving out in the woods and field.

    I say go for it....plant food plots of milo..sorghum and wheat and create a water source and your well on your way!
    [​IMG]
     
  10. joe125

    joe125 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 20, 2010
    Quote:Don't forget to plant ragweed [​IMG]
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by