Quail and the COLD.

Mibotsu

Songster
8 Years
May 23, 2011
1,345
11
133
Balbriggan, Ireland
OK, so i've been reading around at all sorts of sites, from brooding to feeding, cleaning and everything else inbetween. One thing i havn't read about yet is about the cold, i would assume since they are native to the area they are fine with temperatures down as low as the...35-40's(as an extreme).

Or would the best thing to do is to have a smaller cage indoors or with a heat lamp to keep them warm. Would that be the best way to keep egg production all year as well?

any insight?
 

Dirk Chesterfield

Chirping
8 Years
Mar 18, 2011
107
2
89
N. Carolina, USDA Zone 7b
What's your USDA Zone? It'll tell us a lot about your minimum expected temperature. Big difference between Edmonton, Alberta and Miami, Florida weather, kinda makes a difference in cage design.

Also what breed of quail will you be raising?
 

Mibotsu

Songster
8 Years
May 23, 2011
1,345
11
133
Balbriggan, Ireland
i was kinda just talking in general but i will be getting some coturnix, probably only 3

i am in the southern most tip of south carolina, lowest its get here is...low 30's i'd say, but only for a few days and only at night, we've has 75 degree christmas days

edit: if it makes it easier, i'm in 8b
 
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Dirk Chesterfield

Chirping
8 Years
Mar 18, 2011
107
2
89
N. Carolina, USDA Zone 7b
Coturnix will do well in your area if your outside cage has three solid sides and a roof. If your real worried throw a cardboard box in with them so they can huddle in it. I'm in NC and it works here where it's colder. I also can remove all the solid sides on my cage to allow cooling breezes during the hottest time of the year, I just screw them on and off when needed.

The only problem you should have is keeping the water from freezing on unseasonably cold nights. You must be down Charleston / Savannah way (Zone 8b) where it gets down to 15°F to 20°F occasionally.

If you want them to lay all year you have to give them 14 - 16 hrs of light and then when it gets real cold they still won't lay much.
 
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Mibotsu

Songster
8 Years
May 23, 2011
1,345
11
133
Balbriggan, Ireland
ah ok, i'll be building my coop very soon, got the plans its gonna be a half and half, inside and an outside, so i guess that will give enough coverage, hopefully the water won't freeze, i'm right here on an island, i know it gets like 15 in charelston/savannah but i'm in the middle of both, it gets to maybe 25-30 at lowest

thanks again should be good, might invest into a smaller one for the garage with a heat lamp and light to keep them going.
 

JJMR794

Crowing
10 Years
Mar 2, 2009
7,584
149
293
BROOKSVILLE FL
Quote:SOUNDS LIKE YOU'LL HAVE TO ENFORCE THE SAME WINTERTIME RULES I USE--- NO BATHING SUITS! GO PUT ON T SHIRTS AND SHORTS.... NO BAREFOOTING! AT LEAST WEAR FLIP FLOPS... AND FOR GOD'S SAKE IF YOUR GOING TO LAY IN DIRECT SUNLIGHT FOR HOURS ON END FREELOADING AT LEAST USE SOME SUNBLOCK! I DONT WANNA PAY FOR A AVIAN DERMATOLOGIST TO COME OUT HERE AND SPEND 1/2 A DAY HACKIN LIL SKIN CANCERS OFF Y'ALL...
 

shelleyd2008

the bird is the word
11 Years
Sep 14, 2008
23,381
102
351
Adair Co., KY
Generally quail can tolerate the cold pretty well as long as they have a completely enclosed area where they can huddle if they get cold. The problem I've had this year is with the wild temp swings....one week 80's and humid, next week 30's and 40's and raining. I've lost several the past couple months from what I suspect is the huge temperature swings. They are fine one day, then the bottom drops out of the temps. Go out there the next morning and one has died. But mine are all (except 4) at least 2 years old so I'm sure that doesn't help either. Last winter ('09-'10) I had a small-watt light in their 'house' area and didn't lose any, but the oldest ones were almost 1 year so I'm sure that had something to do with it.
 

TwoCrows

Me, attention deficit? Nah. Oh look...a chicken!
BYC Staff
Premium Feather Member
9 Years
Mar 21, 2011
43,928
83,130
1,592
New Mexico, USA
My Coop
Most Quail that are tempered for the outdoors will adjust to any temperature thru out the year. If they have a place to all covey up, away from the wind, snow and rain, they can survive the coldest of temperatures. Old, sick or ones that have compromised immune systems can die in fridged temps.

Here in New Mexico, we have temp swings of 30 to 50 degrees every night. Only on rare occasions will the temp difference from night and day be only 10 or so degrees. I had always thought that it was more the heat than the length of day light that caused quail to lay eggs. But light plays a much bigger part then heat on egg production. This past winter we had a week of arctic air come down and for several nights we had temps of -23 degrees! So of course all the Quail (bobwhites) huddled up in their outdoor coop where I had two heat lamps running full time for a few days, giving them 24 hours a day of light and heat. That at least brought the temp up in the coop to -5. But all this being said, ALL the girls started laying eggs! I was shocked.
But I lost not a one.

So, long story short, they can survive very cold temps if given a place to get out of the weather. They do not need additional heat unless it gets below zero. And by adding at least 14 hours a day of light by artificial ways, you can force your quail to lay thru out the winter.
 
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