Quail cage advice wanted

happyhens1972

Songster
6 Years
Jul 24, 2013
1,070
1,131
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Worcester, UK
I have this cage available and want to keep a dozen or so Coturnix quail....

s-l300.jpg

The full set up is 10ft long, 79cm deep and 86cm high. As you can see, the run area goes the full length of the run, including the covered/shaded area underneath the central coop. The coop will house the food, water and sand bath, to keep them dry. There are no side doors to the coop, just the two ramps. I would be backing both run areas with a solid board so as to give more protection from the prevailing wind.The whole thing will be kept inside a fully predator-proofed, walk in rabbit pen.

IMG_1451.JPG

The rabbit pen currently has a wood chip floor but I feel this is possibly not long term suitable for the quail as it will quickly get covered with poop. I thought maybe a fine pea gravel might be a better option as it will then allow rain or hose water to wash the poop through. I had also considered sand so I could scoop it but was concerned that sand would remain wet and cold for too long and potentially harbour smells and clog up with poopy sediment.

Has anyone got any comments or suggestions that will work with THIS cage, in THESE circumstances (rather than suggesting alternative accommodation!)

Thanks in advance xx
 

JaeG

Crossing the Road
Premium Feather Member
6 Years
Sep 29, 2014
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New Zealand
Quail won't use a coop like chickens will. They are ground birds who instinctively sleep on the ground so they much prefer to rough it. You will likely need to provide more weather protection to keep them dry. Straw is a favourite for them to bed down in.
 

happyhens1972

Songster
6 Years
Jul 24, 2013
1,070
1,131
246
Worcester, UK
Quail won't use a coop like chickens will. They are ground birds who instinctively sleep on the ground so they much prefer to rough it. You will likely need to provide more weather protection to keep them dry. Straw is a favourite for them to bed down in.

Thanks for your help xx

I have kept quail before so am aware of their habits and realise they are more likely to roost under this coop than in it.....though some of my last flock did learn to roost inside a similar set up but even further off the ground. This is why I will also board the backs to protect them from wind and rain but I can also add a top cover if needed.

So you think straw would be a good choice over the current wood chip or should I replace the woodchip with gravel to allow wash through? My last flock were kept on gravel but in a much bigger, walk in aviary so there was less build up. I am concerned with them being in a smaller area, that they will get clogged toes which I know can lead to toe loss! X
 

JaeG

Crossing the Road
Premium Feather Member
6 Years
Sep 29, 2014
7,973
23,577
941
New Zealand
I've never tried gravel. Mine enjoy nesting in and hiding in straw. They are messy things and straw is pretty cheap and easy to take out and replace. But it's up to you whether you want to be hosing down the enclosure or changing out bedding. You could put the gravel down and if it's not working like you wanted just put straw or similar over the top.
 

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