Quail pecking each other to death


Mar 19, 2013
Santa Cruz, Ca.
Sorry. I don't have a lot more time to read through the threads and I am sure this has been answered before.

I admit I'm pretty new to this and did this on a whim without doing much research.

I have 13 Japanese quail in a 2x8 enclosure 12 inches high. I hatched 15 chicks from 23 eggs in a shoebox with a light. They are 3 months old and laying 5-6 eggs a day. They eat purina 30% game bird feed and occasionally melon rinds and left over greens.
I don't know for sure how many are males but at least 4 or 5 and likely 7 or 8. I hatched 15 so 7 or 8 would be the normal m/f ratio.

My quail are pecking each other to death. I've lost two quail in a week. I read in the forum that it is the males that are the problem. I don't have a problem culling them and am able to tell the males by their song when they happen to sing it. However I would like hatch another batch of eggs before I cull them.

How would you handle them if you were me. Would you separate them now? Leave a few males behind?

I think my plan is to gather eggs for a few days and incubate those, then cull all the birds that sing that choodle sound this Sunday.

It seems to me the males are basically doing rooster behavior and I need to get them separated asap. The way I handle my roosters is pick the biggest one and eat the rest. Same deal with quail? Thanks for reading all this.
I would keep 1male to 3 hens if you want to have fertile eggs 1 male won't be able to mate with all your hens so you will get infertile eggs.. I keep one male to 3 hens and my eggs are 100% fertile.. what colors do u have???
They are all mixed. I have a few of the standard brown ones, some that look like A&M crossed with brown, a tuxedo one, a smaller all white one, a few buff colored ones. I will post some pics tomorrow or Saturday if I can.
I would definitely separate them now before anymore get hurt.

How many females do you have?
Ratios should be 1:4 male to female, mainly to satisfy the male and prevent any head scalping for the females.

Choosing the male depends on what you want/your preferences in future generations. Don't choose one that's aggressive towards the females, I've heard of a male having a screw loose in their head and killing off the females for no reason.

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