Quail Housing Together

Discussion in 'Quail' started by TehLizardKing, Sep 30, 2012.

  1. TehLizardKing

    TehLizardKing Chillin' With My Peeps

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    After my Texas A&Ms were all murdered by a rat, (except Jake, the lucky one, who escaped by flying up to the top of the chicken coop) We decided to get Jake some new friends. We saw an ad on preloved for some harlequin quail (2 hens and 3 cocks) for 10 quid, we thought it was too good to miss. When we got them home we found out they hadn't been clipped, as they whirred around the room. Do we need to clip them? Will it stop them flying? So, we put Jake in a HUGE (and i mean huge) cardboard box, and blocked up the top as we released the harlequins into there. Within moments (after we had caught them all) they started pecking at Jake's eyes and pushing her away from the food and water....BUT THEY ARE SO TINY!!!! I have separated them. Do i need to get another Texas A&M or Japanese or something more like her? And can she live on her own? She is content with strolling around our house at the moment, but can she sleep in the box with the harlequins?

    Any advice would be appreciated,

    Thank You.
     
  2. oktx

    oktx Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You seriously have a bird walking around your house covering your floors in poop? I mean, I love my quail and I spoil them silly but they live outside. Not to pick on you but that seems really unsanitary considering how much of a mess they make. Unless Jake's in a diaper I don't see how this could be healthy for your family.

    I would not keep different types of quail together but I haven't had any problems mixing birds of the same type together in colonies. I do have one "Texas A&M" with my pharoah/coturnix and they get along. The only reason is that he is the only one still alive from my first batch from earlier in the Spring. I've had problems with predators of the feline type. I just reinforced the cage and kept them outside.
     
  3. gorabbitgo

    gorabbitgo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If the harlequins are adults they're probably pretty set in their ways and won't appreciate an intruder into their fold. Quail are generally territorial little birds, and Jake should be put with another bird of her own kind or similar.
    Really you only need to clip the new quails' wings if you want to keep them from flying. That's a matter of personal preference. I keep mine clipped on just one side to reduce chances of injury when they "boink" and to make capture of escaped birds easier, but they can still flutter down and cushion their landing should they jump out of my hands while i'm holding or moving them.
    My quail are indoors, but they're kept in a pen with ground corn cob bedding that is easy to change and keep clean.

    I also advise against letting quail cruise the house. There is another thread on this board where a well-meaning owner accidentally stepped on her free-roaming quail and injured him pretty severely. She was very upset and i'd hate to think of another quail lover having to go through that. Not to mention the extremely high nitrates in their poop can damage flooring and are a slipping hazard on hard floors as well as being.... well, icky. [​IMG]
    If you're really set on having free-roaming birds, there are special bird diapers available online (and patterns to sew, if you're crafty) that you line with commercial panty liners to keep poops off of the floor. It won't keep them from getting underfoot or finding ways to escape to the out-of-doors, though.
     
  4. TehLizardKing

    TehLizardKing Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh sorry, I didn't specify, we do have a 'chicken nappy' (quail size), and we only let her walk around the living room, But she is confined to her box and/or my lap now. We just felt sorry for her last night [​IMG]. On the subject of the Harlequins, will they ever except Jake? because we are going to put her (and some other kind of coturnix) in a bigger, more secure run. And can our Harlequins live outside? they were kept inside by the woman who owned them before us...we live in E England and it is usually slightly less then room temperature outside, but it gets very cold in winter (which, to my and the birds despair, is approaching fast [​IMG]).
     
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2012
  5. WalkingWolf1

    WalkingWolf1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We had similar a dilemma here with our A&M's. The dog killed 12 of the 13 we had and the one that survived was touch and go for a couple of days. I went back to JamesMarie Farm for a few more young breeders and had a long conversation with Robbie about how to co-mingle young adult birds. It can be tricky and many times just will not succeed. Robbie mentioned the eyes are the first thing they go for. I lost on of my new birds to this the first night and had to rescue one from another pen as she had been attacked. She survived and is doing better but the male/female pair will not accept her (we've retried). We currently have a breeding pair of A&Ms and a pair of Golden Manchurians.

    If just want eggs then another female should work out. If you want to try hatching a couple then a young male. With only one more of a like kind I think you have a better chance of them partnering up. As a side note -- the two A&M hens I bought for the male that survived the dog attack were housed together before and were amicable. After 2-3 days here, with all three in the cage, the male and one of the females partnered up and attacked the other female. After much study it seems the common opinion is that all co-mingling needs to occur before maturity (before 7 weeks) for the best success.
     
  6. TehLizardKing

    TehLizardKing Chillin' With My Peeps

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    OK, thank you. Looks like Jake won't be having any cage mates...
     

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