Scalped Quail

Discussion in 'Quail' started by JMoriarty111012, Jan 22, 2017.

  1. JMoriarty111012

    JMoriarty111012 Just Hatched

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    I need some help. I have 30 coturnix quail, 5 males to 25 females. They range from 8 weeks to 9.5 weeks. Yesterday I came home from a baby shower to find one of my males missing all the skin from the top of his head. I went out this afternoon to check on him and the others, and found one of my hens missing about half the skin from her head. Their cage is only 12" high and they're in the garage so nothing to startle them and make them hit their heads. I'm assuming it's one of the other birds. I just can't figure out who. All of them males are rough with the hens, and I have one hen that's just a jerk to everyone. I'm not sure what to do at this point.

    The male that was scalped is separated to keep the others from pecking at him, but the hen is not. She wasn't as bad and I don't have a third cage to put her in alone. Any help is much appreciated!
     
  2. Dragons4u

    Dragons4u Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I always keep only a single male in a pen with some hens. Unless you've got a huge aviary and plenty of hiding spots, the males always seem to pick fights. I was keeping one male with ten females...Unfortunely the last male I kept was sterile, so I couldn't hatch any of my own eggs.
     
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2017
  3. SilkiesForEver

    SilkiesForEver Overrun With Chickens

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    I had this happen to one of my chickens a few years ago. Her flock mates scalped her so bad her visible skull was about the size of a dime, and she was a bantam.

    The only thing I can think to do to find the culprit(s) is to look for blood on their beak.
     
  4. JMoriarty111012

    JMoriarty111012 Just Hatched

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    Do you have an issue with him not being able to cover all the hens and fertilize the eggs?

    It sucks! I'm just hoping it's not 1 of the 3 that we consider lifers. Both of my boys have picked out and named one, and then I have a favorite. Of course, the ******* white one is the oldest's favorite. Her name is Luigi lol.
     
  5. JaeG

    JaeG Overrun With Chickens

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    At that age they are sexually mature so without enough space and hiding places the boys will fight and it can get really nasty. Your best bet is to have a boys cage and a girls cage, or leave one calm male in with the girls. Make sure the boys can't see the girls or they will fight. If they've been raised together they should live together fine.

    Your hen may be aggressive because of how the males are acting. She will be stressed.

    It is tough when you have kids! Our last lot we hatched, 9 out of 11 chicks were boys! That was tough.

    I've had a boy scalped right down to the bone and he recovered fine. They are incredibly tough birds.
     
  6. Binki

    Binki Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sorry to hear that, unfortunately it will usually happen with hormonal males kept together after a certain age. :/

    The female who is hurt is now a tasty target for that shiny wet red blood on her head - I would imagine she will be harassed so even if you use a tote bin or a $5 used hamster cage from the thrift store/online buy and sell, she needs to be seperate until she's healed or they could tear her apart and she's probably hiding a lot maybe not getting the food and water she needs.
     
  7. JMoriarty111012

    JMoriarty111012 Just Hatched

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    I'm going to hit Tractor Supply on my way home. I have some empty totes I can use, just need feeders and waterers for them. I've also heard Blu-Kote works well to help it heal and protect the wound?
     
  8. Binki

    Binki Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nice :) I've never tried Blue-Kote myself but have read about success from others [​IMG]
     

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