Smaller female showing dominance to the larger female?


7 Years
Oct 10, 2012
Alright, to back up this story, it started off with three quails

A. Quail One (Pepper, the 'larger' one)
B. Quail two (Caramel, the 'smaller' one)
C. Quail three (Bolt, the male.)

Pepper and Bolt were mates after a few weeks of getting used to their new home. After choosing his mate, Bolt didn't exactly like Caramel, and started to scare her off at times; Where ever she was, he'd just honk at her constantly, peck at her and chase her away. After one or two weeks it settled, they all seem neutral around each other.

I was surprised to see Bolt mount Caramel. I guess that's what eased the complication. But now Pepper is getting picked on by Caramel, even though Pepper is much larger in size... What Bolt had once done to Caramel, now Caramel does to Pepper.
When Caramel approaches, Pepper makes a soft, but 'panicked' coo, as of what Caramel did when Bolt was around before; Then Caramel chases her for a second (literally) and then everything is fine.

Once Pepper didn't move and Caramel pecked at her face and Pepper ran.

Why is this sudden switch of dominance happening?
Bolt likes both females, but now the smaller female doesn't like the bigger female? They were both good friends in a way, if I separated Pepper from Caramel, Caramel (and Bolt of course, he'd crow) would call to her until she comes back...

Anyone know why?

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