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Quail Feathers

Discussion in 'Quail' started by dimi, Apr 3, 2016.

  1. dimi

    dimi Out Of The Brooder

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    May 11, 2014
    NJ
    Hi, all

    beginning of year there were two quail chicks that hatched - mail and female. By now they are fully grown and they have been living in a divided cage side by side with the rest of adult female quail. All coturnix breed. Now a couple of weeks back I decided to remove the separation since they seemed of the same size. A couple of days after I removed the separation between them I noticed my older female quails significantly missing feathers. I also noticed the new male going after all females and pecking on them. Since it seemed like a danger to the female quail life, I separated male to a different cage.

    Now I want to put male back with the rest of females. Any thoughts on the best way to do it?

    I have two cages - one on top of the other, one thought I had was to mix up them - put them all into one cage, rather than just reintroducing male back to the existing cage.

    Please help.

    Thanks!
     
  2. coturnix condos

    coturnix condos Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 26, 2016
    Vancouver wa
    Also have the same question. My quail are 5 weeks old and females are looking feathers. How old are your quail?
     
  3. coturnix condos

    coturnix condos Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 26, 2016
    Vancouver wa
    "losing"
     
  4. Tony K T

    Tony K T Overrun With Chickens

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    Jul 28, 2008
    New Hampshire
    He is probably over anxious to breed.Are the feathers missing from on top of their heads?How many females are in this cage?How many males?
    In N.H.,Tony.
     
  5. dimi

    dimi Out Of The Brooder

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    May 11, 2014
    NJ
    5 female to that 1 male. There is another male but he is a different cage, below the one in question - no visual of the other male.
    Feathers are missing from back of the heads and their backs. Some are pretty much bold on back and heads.
     
  6. Sill

    Sill Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 30, 2013
    Tempe, AZ
    Feather picking is a bad habit. Watch them and see who is doing it. Ages of these birds? Were the hens in perfect feather before being joined with the rooster? Is the hen that was raised with him OK? It could be her doing the back picking, especially if she looks fine. He is probably pulling feathers on heads and necks during breeding but could be doing both. I tend to have the best luck with coturnix by raising a batch of chicks together and setting up breeding groups from them, and keeping them together for life. I cull anything aggressive, roosters with shrill voices, miss-marked sex linked feathering. By raising enough chicks you can cull hard and end up with very nice breeding groups to keep. The rest make delicious dinner.
     
    1 person likes this.
  7. dimi

    dimi Out Of The Brooder

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    May 11, 2014
    NJ
    Sill, thanks for the response.
    The hens that were there before were missing feathers before as well but they lost even more once he started mating them. I was trying to watch who is doing that but can't attribute it to anyone. 4 out of 5 hens are about 10 month, another one was hatched with the roo in question back in January.

    Yesterday I tried reintroducing him but that attempt failed as well. He just tries humping them but doesn't fully do it - grabs feathers on the back and runs around like that pulling hen with him. I've had quails for over two years - first time I see behavior like this.

    Question: since you mentioned raising all chicks all together and having them stay for their lifespan - do you worry about inbreeding? I am not too knowledgeable on the subject but when do I need to start worrying about inbreeding in quail?

    Thanks and best regards,
    Dmitri
     
  8. Sill

    Sill Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 30, 2013
    Tempe, AZ
    If I feel the need I'll buy chicks from someone. I'll usually try to buy some the same age as a batch I'm hatching and keep all hens from one source and the roo from the other and log what I have. That way I bring in a new blood line and the chicks are raised together as stress free as possible. They get along from the beginning and there is no aggression. It's the best I can do for my birds.
     

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