Still no eggs!

Tinktank

In the Brooder
Nov 21, 2021
16
15
26
Hi all,
I have 10 week old coturnix quail and I still haven’t had any eggs!
Last week I pulled 7 males from my flock for butchering. I now have 10 females and two males in my outdoor set up. I have an all sides covered run and coop that provide about 44 sq. ft for my quail. We have had some wicked cold blasts here in Montana getting down to -2 a few nights ago. My quail have an infrared heater inside their coop and I assist them with a heat lamp only when it gets below 20 here. When we aren’t in a cold snap I supplement with a light to help encourage laying but still have had no luck. Previously I had my covey on a 16% organic feed that I aggressively supplemented with other forms of protein. Now I have switched to a higher protein crumble so I can have less work and expense but still no eggs. Any suggestions as to how I can help my hens lay would be greatly appreciated. If we don’t start seeing some production my husband likely will force me to harvest all of them seeing as we’ve sunk a huge amount of change into raising them from hatching eggs. Thanks for any assistance.
 

yakitori

Crowing
Jun 22, 2020
2,004
4,272
331
New York
Hi all,
I have 10 week old coturnix quail and I still haven’t had any eggs!
Last week I pulled 7 males from my flock for butchering. I now have 10 females and two males in my outdoor set up. I have an all sides covered run and coop that provide about 44 sq. ft for my quail. We have had some wicked cold blasts here in Montana getting down to -2 a few nights ago. My quail have an infrared heater inside their coop and I assist them with a heat lamp only when it gets below 20 here. When we aren’t in a cold snap I supplement with a light to help encourage laying but still have had no luck. Previously I had my covey on a 16% organic feed that I aggressively supplemented with other forms of protein. Now I have switched to a higher protein crumble so I can have less work and expense but still no eggs. Any suggestions as to how I can help my hens lay would be greatly appreciated. If we don’t start seeing some production my husband likely will force me to harvest all of them seeing as we’ve sunk a huge amount of change into raising them from hatching eggs. Thanks for any assistance.
Are you providing supplemental lighting? They need 12+ hours of light to lay, They don't need a ton of lighting, a solar light would do well. mine didn't lay until I turned on the porch light for an extra 4 hours (totaling 14 hours of light) every night.

I'm feeding my adults with 16% layer crumble mixed with 20% chick starter. Not going the organic route since that would be too pricey for me!

If that fails, I would see if there are other factors that are stressing your quails out. Stressed birds will hold off on egg laying.
 

Tinktank

In the Brooder
Nov 21, 2021
16
15
26
Are you providing supplemental lighting? They need 12+ hours of light to lay, They don't need a ton of lighting, a solar light would do well. mine didn't lay until I turned on the porch light for an extra 4 hours (totaling 14 hours of light) every night.

I'm feeding my adults with 16% layer crumble mixed with 20% chick starter. Not going the organic route since that would be too pricey for me!

If that fails, I would see if there are other factors that are stressing your quails out. Stressed birds will hold off on egg laying.
 

Tinktank

In the Brooder
Nov 21, 2021
16
15
26
Yes they are receiving supplemental light for 14 hours and are eating a 22% organic crumble. I also supplement them with electrolyte water every other refill, herbs, grit, sand box for dust bathing, etc… honestly they are spoiled as hell. They may have some sound upset outside but they were directly in the middle of our living space from egg to 6 weeks and so I’d assumed used to our noise and pets. I’d assume they were much more comfortable outside with minimal interruptions.
 

Nabiki

Quail Geek
Premium Feather Member
May 15, 2019
9,560
61,748
1,096
Sonoma County, CA
It sounds like something is stressing them. You might see if you can set up a camera outside of their coop to see if they are having any night time visitors such as raccoons, rats, or other predators.

It may also take them a little while to start laying due to stress from their move. Removing the majority of the boys was a good start for reducing stress.
 

maycwindu

Chirping
7 Years
Jul 26, 2014
38
42
99
Have your males begun crowing/mounting/foaming yet?

Mine are about 9 or 10 weeks and laid their first eggs a couple days ago. They get a couple of dim lamps in their coop until 10 pm. I live in a temperate region.

So, could be environmental stress factors (maybe the cold snaps, maybe they're getting molested by critters). It could be genetics; your stock might be late layers. Either way, you've already invested in the flock up till this point, and sounds like you're doing everything right, so I don't think it's worth it to cull the entire herd. I think you'll see eggs in the next week or two.
 

yakitori

Crowing
Jun 22, 2020
2,004
4,272
331
New York
This may sound odd, but maybe you can try confining them to a smaller space. Sometimes that gives them a better sense of security
 

vall

DIY
Oct 5, 2020
466
2,154
216
So. Cal.
What do you use for supplemental lighting? How long has that been on? Mine will start laying later if I don't have 14+ hours of light on them starting from hatch, really.

I'd expect eggs no more than a week or two after your boys start crowing.
 

Tinktank

In the Brooder
Nov 21, 2021
16
15
26
It sounds like something is stressing them. You might see if you can set up a camera outside of their coop to see if they are having any night time visitors such as raccoons, rats, or other predators.

It may also take them a little while to start laying due to stress from their move. Removing the majority of the boys was a good start for reducing stress.
I just can’t really think of what though. Their run and coop is on the ground with mesh that I cover in fresh thick amounts of straw ( just enough so they can burrow if they like and keep their feet warm) but I covered it in a slightly thick opaque plastic with an open end because our wind gets insane in the winter ( has reached 25 mp more than once already). But we don’t have much issues with predators. We have German Shepherds who show no interest in them and patrol the property. 🤷‍♀️
 

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