Quail cage

Discussion in 'Quail' started by VickieB57, Sep 6, 2013.

  1. VickieB57

    VickieB57 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have purchased some Pet Lodge rabbit cages (30x36) and am getting ready to put them together for my quail. (They should be hatching on Sunday or Monday, so I have at least 3 weeks) I have some questions for those of you who are experienced with quail (these are my first).

    The first cage will be for my layers. I wanted to put in just hens for eggs for consumption. Would you put in dividers, giving each hen a small space of her own, or would you keep it open and put the hens together? How many hens could you put into a cage that size where they would have enough room to be happy?

    The height of the cages is 16". I was thinking of bringing the top of the cage down enough to make it safer for the birds. How much height should I give them. I was thinking around 11".
     
  2. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend... Staff Member

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    It is best to keep all the hens together. As long as there are no males around, they should all get along and enjoy each others company. Don't squeeze them in however and give them as much space as you can afford. That size of cage would happy keep 5 or 6 females. You might also put in some cut branches from a tree for some hidey places and give it a natural feeling inside the cage. You can also put out hay for nest building. Hens love that stuff. They don't need nest boxes, but will build nests if they have the material.

    Make sure to offer them a place to get off the wire if you are not using bedding. And give them a pan full of dirt or sand for dust bathing. Quail need to dust bathe daily.

    The height of the ceiling should be somewhere around 12". Using branches inside the cage will cause less flushing and they won't have the tendency to fly up as much if they feel secure.
     
  3. James the Bald

    James the Bald Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Ditto on Two Crows comments. On your cage height, anything less than 10 inches gets restrictive. I made one cage 9 inches high to try to squeeze the most cage I could out of the hardware cloth I had, and then I couldn't fit the waterer in, so I had to tear it down and build it over again.

    Is this the type of cage you are building? I considered buying several of those kits and stacking them, but at $70 a kit... to pricey for me. If money wasn't an issue, THIS is what I would really like to have.

    Good luck,
    James
     
  4. VickieB57

    VickieB57 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    James, that is the style but not the brand. I purchased 4 of that brand from Tractor Supply for my rabbits and they were horrible. The wire is 1"x4". It started rusting within a few short months, and popping off the edges of the cage. The trays warped and now won't sit on the tracks, so they just sit on the patio. I had had 2 Pet Lodge that I started using at the same time. Today, the Pet Lodge still look pretty good, and the Home Rig look like antiques you would find in someone's old barn and I've only had them 4 1/2 months. If you were to ever consider buying that style I would recommend checking out the other brands. I found it worth the extra $15 to buy the Pet Lodge at a different store.

    I do have six of the Pet Lodge I'm putting together for my birds. I thought for the breeders I would slant the floor, and keep the front up high enough for the eggs to roll through. Instead of using the floor that comes with the cage I was going to buy some 1/2"x1/2" wire mesh. I thought I would adjust either the top or bottom to make it shorter.

    Besides the two cages for the breeders (one for eggs, the other for meat) I was wanting to have 5 for the grow out cages for the meat birds; one for each week of new birds (dispatching at 8 weeks).

    I'm using the Pharaoh quail, so I can't use the quail racks in my incubator. I thought if I used half the racks each week, I could sit 21 eggs a week. On day 14 put the eggs into a different incubator used for lock down only.

    I was hoping to be able to supply enough fresh quail (no freezing) for my home and my daughter's this way (I'm taking into consideration a 60% hatch rate). I don't know how it will work, and will probably need a little tweaking before done, but it's the plan for now.
     
  5. VickieB57

    VickieB57 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    By the way, on the fb quail group I was told I would need a roo either in the cage with my egg layers, or in a cage beside them in order to have them lay eggs. I was also told that fertilized eggs were 4x the nutrition as unfertilized. Have y'all found that to be true with your own birds? It wouldn't be a problem putting a roo in with the girls, but if the girls would be happier without one, and still lay, I would be happy to keep it that way too.
     
  6. jaxchic

    jaxchic Chillin' With My Peeps

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    No you do not need a roo for the quail to lay eggs.
     

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