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newbie quail won't go in coop at night!

Discussion in 'Quail' started by mudfinger, Dec 4, 2012.

  1. mudfinger

    mudfinger Hatching

    Dec 4, 2012
    Hi everyone great site so glad I've found somewhere to find some information about theys little buggers, I picked some up the other night from a friend who bought a job lot from market. Great little things just know nothing about em.
    They seem pretty straight forward, but I can't get them to go in there coop at night! It's off the ground about 8" and they seem to prefer to go underneath at night. Getting cold a night and don't want them freezing.
    Anyone got any tips or ideas?

  2. ChicKat

    ChicKat Crowing Premium Member

    WELCOME to the BYC forum.

    I;m sure someone here will have just the answer...... I know they always told us that if chickens didn't go into a new coop at night to put a flashlight there so it seems lit. So?? if you have easy access maybe a flashlight so they can 'go toward the light..' Again, it works for chickens. also maybe a little board ramp for them to scamper up.

    good luck with it

    Hope that you get the answer from quail people.
  3. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend Staff Member

    Mar 21, 2011
    New Mexico, USA
    My Coop
    Welcome to the quail forums!

    Quail are unlike chickens in that they go into a coop at night and really prefer to sleep outside, if they have such an enclosure. However, that does not mean that they should not be run into their coop should the weather warrants it.

    The first thing you should do is lock them in this coop for a couple of days, (as long as it has light and windows with ventilation) so that they become familiar with it and are not afraid to use it. They will then find comfort in being in there and may go in on their own if the weather turns bad.

    However, still there may be days that they do not want to go inside and you want them to go inside. You need to train them to get inside should there be an emergency, you need to clean or as you have suggested here, go inside at night on cold nights.

    I keep my birds in an aviary and their coop is an elevated one as well. I clicker trained them to get in the coop so that I can get all of them in without having to physically handle any of them.

    Once your birds have been in this coop for a while and feel comfortable using it, you can work with them on getting them in. What I did was get my handy dandy quail net and a dog clicker. I did not chase them around with the net, but showed them the net and clicked the clicker, all the while telling them to "get into the coop". (you may need to block off the underneath so that they have no choice but to run from the net and up the ramp, or get caught in the net.) They had no other place to go but into the coop or be snagged by this net. At least that is what they thought. Quail are pretty smart and learn pretty quick. I rewarded them with a tray of meal worms so that they relaxed once they got in. Over time, they no longer needed the net, or the treat, just the click of the clicker and sometimes just telling them to "get into the coop" will get them started.

    Work with them, come up with your own training means. It can be done. Good luck!
    1 person likes this.
  4. mudfinger

    mudfinger Hatching

    Dec 4, 2012
    Well I'd never have thought of that, looks like I'm going to have to become a 'quail wisperer' lol, fascinating creatures, all individuals. thanks for the quick reply, think I'll start by leaving them in for couple of days first then do some intensive training this weekend. thanks again for the help sure I'll need it again! all the best

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