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Newly aquired button quail

Discussion in 'Quail' started by ponypaw, Aug 13, 2011.

  1. ponypaw

    ponypaw Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 1, 2011
    I went to an auction today for small farm animals. I came home with 4 little button quail. [​IMG] However now that I have them home I've noticed a few things I wanted to ask all of you about. I did hatch about 30 coternix quail once but that was many years ago. First off going by the color guides I've found I have 1 normal male, 1 red breasted male, 1 red breasted female, and 1 silver male.

    All four were in a pen together, and when I got them home the silver male was not moving much. He was just sitting there fluffed up. I decided to keep them inside with me for a few nights so I could observe them, and I noticed one of the other males was picking on him a lot, so I moved him to a smaller nursing cage. He has since perked up considerably, so i think perhaps he was intimidated rather than actually sick as I feared. His eyes appear to be very tiny which worries me but he does seem able to see and I don't see any blood, so I am hoping it is just swelling around the eyes.

    All the birds' backs seem to have been plucked of feathers however. I haven't seen any active plucking, and no one seems inconvenienced by it, but I am wondering if there is anything to do for that aside from just wait for the feathers to grow back in.

    The most serious problem I've noticed is with everyone's toes. I couldn't see it at auction, but all of them have had a joint or two clipped from their toes! The normal male has one foot where all three toes are just little tiny stubs. Nobody is showing signs of having trouble walking. They spaz a lot when I move, leaping into the air and such lol. but the ends of some of their toes looks dirty, for lack of a better word, like there is dirt stuck to them.

    What I am wondering is if all this would be a product of overcrowding on the part of their former owner. The little silver will be staying in his own cage for now and when they go outside he will be put with the female in a very large pen which right now houses only a lone pheasant chick you might have seen elsewhere. The two normal males I haven't decided if it's ok to put them all together or not. I love the silver and I don't want him getting picked on anymore. I had hoped the four of them would be good company for the pheasant, but I don't want to have to worry about this kind of bullying either. Do you think they'd be ok housed in a large appx 6' x 10' cage or should I work on separate housing?

    Also if they will be ok I would like to even out the ration of males to females, so if you can recommend a place that sells female adults and doesn't charge a fortune to ship just 2 tiny birds I would love to hear about it.

    --------------
    Update:

    The little silver fellow is perfectly fine now apparently. He's even been mating with the female I put in with him. Both of them have called a few times and they are beginning to chill out. They no longer stare and boink every time I move a muscle. XD His eyes are looking normal sized too so it seems he's going to be fine. <3

    I was also quite surprised to see the two I thought were male getting together. Possibly a female with a tiny bib? I can't find info if they can ever have one. *head scratch*

    Little feathers are growing all over their backs, on all four birds, so everyone is much improved in this as well. Hopefully in a few weeks they won't be so naked. XD
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2011
  2. shelleyd2008

    shelleyd2008 the bird is the word

    23,384
    31
    351
    Sep 14, 2008
    Adair Co., KY
    I went to an auction today for small farm animals. I came home with 4 little button quail. However now that I have them home I've noticed a few things I wanted to ask all of you about. I did hatch about 30 coternix quail once but that was many years ago. First off going by the color guides I've found I have 1 normal male, 1 red breasted male, 1 red breasted female, and 1 silver male.

    All four were in a pen together, and when I got them home the silver male was not moving much. He was just sitting there fluffed up. I decided to keep them inside with me for a few nights

    Unless you live someplace that is warm (over 70 degrees) all year 'round, they should stay inside with you at all times
    so I could observe them, and I noticed one of the other males was picking on him a lot, so I moved him to a smaller nursing cage. He has since perked up considerably, so i think perhaps he was intimidated rather than actually sick as I feared. His eyes appear to be very tiny which worries me but he does seem able to see and I don't see any blood, so I am hoping it is just swelling around the eyes.

    I have a male in the bachelor pen that also has 'small' eyes...it is caused by the males in the first bachelor pad he lived in picking on him way too much but he is finally able to see.
    All the birds' backs seem to have been plucked of feathers however. I haven't seen any active plucking, and no one seems inconvenienced by it, but I am wondering if there is anything to do for that aside from just wait for the feathers to grow back in.

    Separate them; put one male and the female in a cage together and put the other 2 males in a cage together. They probably came from a 'colony' breeder [​IMG] who had way too many in their pen.
    The most serious problem I've noticed is with everyone's toes. I couldn't see it at auction, but all of them have had a joint or two clipped from their toes! The normal male has one foot where all three toes are just little tiny stubs. Nobody is showing signs of having trouble walking. They spaz a lot when I move, leaping into the air and such lol. but the ends of some of their toes looks dirty, for lack of a better word, like there is dirt stuck to them.

    Probably poop balls from being on dirty bedding too long. You can soak their feet in warm water and gently get the balls off. I like to use something like a pair of pliers to 'crush' or 'chip away' at the stuff, rather than just pulling, because you CAN pull their toenails or even toes off if you aren't careful! That's probably why some seem to be missing parts of their toes...poor things [​IMG]
    What I am wondering is if all this would be a product of overcrowding on the part of their former owner.

    Most likely overcrowding or raising them in 'colonies'.
    The little silver will be staying in his own cage for now and when they go outside

    They should not go outside [​IMG]
    he will be put with the female

    since he is obviously 'low man' in the pecking order the female might pick on him too
    in a very large pen which right now houses only a lone pheasant chick you might have seen elsewhere.

    If you put the buttons in with the pheasant, the pheasant will almost surely kill them.
    The two normal males I haven't decided if it's ok to put them all together or not.

    Since you don't plan on putting a female with them for them to fight over they should be fine together.
    I love the silver and I don't want him getting picked on anymore. I had hoped the four of them would be good company for the pheasant, but I don't want to have to worry about this kind of bullying either. Do you think they'd be ok housed in a large appx 6' x 10' cage or should I work on separate housing?

    Also if they will be ok I would like to even out the ration of males to females, so if you can recommend a place that sells female adults and doesn't charge a fortune to ship just 2 tiny birds I would love to hear about it.

    Shipping is based on location and weight of packages, so your best bet is to find someone close to you. If we knew where you were, we might be able to suggest someone to you. In my experience it costs on average from $25-$45 to ship 1-6 button quail, then you have to take the price of the birds into consideration.
     
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2011
  3. xchairity_casex

    xchairity_casex Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 5, 2011
    listen to shellyd! she has alot of experience!

    Quote:also i have a quick question one of my pair of birds keeps having this problem and im not sure what to do everyday i wash there feet only to find more the very next day! ive tried switching bedding at first i used gravel,then i switched to alfalfa pellets then i tried wood shavings then i tried sand(the worst!) then i tried walnut shell(also a bad one!) and finally i gave up and am useing drawer liners like for the babies which has actually been the best if i rinse it everyday but i just canot figure out how to keep this from happening! they are in a good sized cage 2 1/2 feet by 3 feet so they have got room and there the only pair who i have this problem with i worry about there toes and there feet any suggestions would be helpful
     
  4. shelleyd2008

    shelleyd2008 the bird is the word

    23,384
    31
    351
    Sep 14, 2008
    Adair Co., KY
    They're apparently getting their feet wet somewhere, making it easier for 'stuff' to stick to them. I don't see why they'd have that problem in a cage so large, they should be able to go months without accumulating enough 'stuff' to stick to their feet. Make sure they can't walk in their feed or water and see if that doesn't help, and make sure they have something to dust bathe in since they would scratch at that and help keep their feet clean.
     

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