Quail Questions

Discussion in 'Quail' started by Redheads5, Mar 24, 2013.

  1. Redheads5

    Redheads5 Out Of The Brooder

    24
    0
    22
    Jan 18, 2013
    Just had our first ever egg hatch on Friday and it was a quail. We are super excited. I have some questions though. We live in Canada and do not need to explain the winters here, I'm sure. We need to build a coop. We plan on having it off the ground with a heat lamp, etc. We cover our run in our Chicken Coop in the winter with tarps. Do the Quail like to scratch at the ground for bugs and stuff? All the quail coops I look at seem to have a "floor" in the run area. I understand they do not need a ton of room but isn't it good for them to have bare ground as well in the warmer month?
     
  2. TwoCrows

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

    32,010
    4,661
    581
    Mar 21, 2011
    New Mexico, USA
    My Coop
    You can keep quail in pens or on the ground. It is entirely up to you. However if you do keep them on the ground, cleanliness is crucial, especially in wet environments. Bacteria's, virus's and parasites thrive in wet conditions.

    So all this being said....yes they do enjoy being on the ground scratching for bugs and such. I have always kept my quail in aviaries and have never had any issues. You will need a roof over their run to keep it as dry as possible and some sort of shelter. And in your case, in the high north, it will need to have solid walls, flooring and ceiling. Bedding on the coop floor so they can snuggle in deeply together on those cold night winters.

    Once you get something built for them, I recommend you lock your quail in this structure for a few days before letting them out into the run. This will give them comfort in being in there and they will readily use it. If not, they will not venture in and not relate to it's ability to keep them warm or safe. Quail don't go in to roost at night like chickens and will only use the shelter when the weather warrants it.
     
  3. James the Bald

    James the Bald Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,022
    112
    186
    Jan 6, 2013
    We do have one member that is from Alaska... I believe that the title of your thread was "too vague" and the member hasn't recognized your situation or location.

    To maximize the assistance you receive here, may I recommend that in the future, try to be more specific in your subject. As an example, I don't keep button quail, so I rarely read or respond to threads with button quail in the topic as I have no personal knowledge of them; I noticed that you didn't mention what type of quail you have hatched.

    But back to the matter at hand, in another thread pertaining to keeping quail with chickens (which is another topic of debate altogether), here is how she replied (post #14).

    For what it's worth, if you read the start of the thread I posted, keeping quail with chickens "can" be fatal. Some people keep them together with no problems. Others do not. I don't keep chickens, but but I would prefer to protect the quail if something "can" kill it.

    I hope this helps; dang, I just realized that I lost 15 cents.
     
  4. Redheads5

    Redheads5 Out Of The Brooder

    24
    0
    22
    Jan 18, 2013
    It is a japanese quail. We do not plan on having it mixed with our chickens. I know if it was me I would be intimidated by a big chicken coming at me![​IMG]

    I cannot believe they don't go inside at night. That is crazy! You would think they would want to be safe and stay in. Very weird.
    So, is it better to give them some height to fly a bit? I have read that if they get spooked they fly up and can break their necks. So if we do not have a ton of height maybe that can't happen.

    Thanks for the info
     
  5. TwoCrows

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

    32,010
    4,661
    581
    Mar 21, 2011
    New Mexico, USA
    My Coop
    If you keep them in pens, you would want to keep the ceiling at 1 foot or so high. Any higher and they CAN get flight up and break their necks. If you keep them in an aviary style setting, you need a ceiling of 7 feet or so. You can use some sort of netting material near the ceiling to protect them from bouncing off it, if you go with a 6 foot or less ceiling.
     
  6. Redheads5

    Redheads5 Out Of The Brooder

    24
    0
    22
    Jan 18, 2013
    OK, sorry still not really understanding completely. If I build an aviary which is sort of the direction we want to go, it will be outside. The coop and what we envision as a "winter run" will be protected from the elements. If they don't go in at night and stay in the aviary and perdators come around, would that not scare them and they could fly up and hurt themselves. Or even when we go to the coop. Is an aviary meant to be inside where this does not happen.
     
  7. TwoCrows

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

    32,010
    4,661
    581
    Mar 21, 2011
    New Mexico, USA
    My Coop
    I am talking about an outdoor aviary, a large caged area for the birds. My birds go into their "coop" when it is too windy, it is raining or snowing outside, (I do have roofs on the aviaries, but of course snow and rain always sneak in the sides a bit), they also head in when it gets below 10 degrees outside. Again, you do have to train them by locking them in for a spell so they get comfortable being in there. I have mine "clicker trained" (those dog clickers are excellent to use) so that I can make them go inside when I want them to be in there. Otherwise they prefer to live outside year round, on the ground.
     
  8. Redheads5

    Redheads5 Out Of The Brooder

    24
    0
    22
    Jan 18, 2013
    How long did it take to clicker train? When they go in you close the coop door then? I get the locking in for 2-3 days when we first put them in. Makes sense.
     
  9. TwoCrows

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

    32,010
    4,661
    581
    Mar 21, 2011
    New Mexico, USA
    My Coop
    I have several aviaries, however all my birds live in one particular aviary during the winter months. I built this aviary up against a greenhouse. I cut a hole in the side of the greenhouse, stacked up cement blocks and inside the greenhouse is a large rabbit hutch. So this is their shelter. And since everybody ends up in this aviary, they all learn how to get into the coop when I want them to. The other aviaries only have large breeding cages where they spend the summer months.

    What I did in the beginning was, get my quail net, (a small holed fishing net) and the clicker. Of course the quail are terrified of this net, having been snagged in it occasionally. LOL So while holding this net, I clicked my clicker and told them loudly, to "get into the coop". I didn't chase them with the net, but allowed them to see it. They automatically went in the opposite direction of the net and I corralled them into the coop. After a several days of this process, I was able to drop the net and just use the clicker all the while telling them to "get into the coop". Any new comers learn from the older quail.

    Over the years they have learned the command to "get into the coop" and many times I can even go without the clicker. After the long summer of forgetting, of course I have to go back to using the clicker once again. Only rarely do I need to show the net, only on those stuborn quail that just don't want to listen to me. LOL

    This was the only way I could get 100 quail in the coop for emergencies, (have had a few of those, LOL), to separate out a few quail or for those nights that are going to be sub zero and snowing. It has never failed me. Sometimes quail are not that smart and if you feel they need shelter, this method will get them where you want them.

    Just make sure your coop has LOTS of light and air for ventilation, especially during wet humid cold weather.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by