Transitioning from chickens to quail....need help

Discussion in 'Quail' started by quailforme, Jul 13, 2016.

  1. quailforme

    quailforme New Egg

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    Jul 13, 2016
    Hello all! We moved from the country to suburbia and we brought a few of our chickens...well we cannot have them, so I will be raising quail instead. How do we turn a chicken coop into a quail pen? The ramp goes up 15", is this too much? We are thinking of putting it on the ground then there would just be a 4-6" step, would that be better? What do I have to do to get ready for these guys, I am ordering eggs and going to hatch them. Any other tips or websites to help me?!?!
     
  2. Pineapple

    Pineapple Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 5, 2013
    Quail do not need ramps, and in fact can get rather uncomfortable with them. They spend their whole lives on the ground and do not perch or roost. The ceiling has to be much shorter (around 12"-14" at most) or extremely tall (6 feet or more) because when startled quail will pop upward and break their neck in most enclosures designed for chickens.

    The wire must also be a lot smaller, 0.5" at the widest.

    Even a six inch step is too high for quail. Often times chicken enclosures cannot be converted for quail as easily as rabbit or cavy enclosures can.
     
  3. DK newbie

    DK newbie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 20, 2015
    I read different things about quail and ramps. It seems some will use them, some won't. It might have to do with how steep the ramp is. But there has also been posts on here saying half the quail use the ramp and go in at night, the other half doesn't. Some people move the quail in on their own if they won't use the ramp, some leave them. Placing feed and water in the inside part might help.
    As Pineapple said, there is a risk of the quail boinking into the roof and getting hurt. For the inside part, you might be able to pad the roof with foam sheets or similar. For the outside, if you add plenty of hiding places for the quail, they might not feel the need to boink - they use it as a last option when they find their hiding places insufficient.
    Anyway, I've seen people on here using chicken coops for quail with success, so I believe it can be done, but you do need to take some additional things into consideration.
     
  4. quailforme

    quailforme New Egg

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    Jul 13, 2016
    Thank you for the replies, I have been trying to think of different things. The wood coop is only2-3' tall inside, I was thinking of putting bird netting inside incase they would boink, use the roosts for support. For the chicken run which is 3 1/2' tall I was going to do potted plants, hiding buckets with brush and maybe do a bird netting in there that I can pull back some of it to clean it. the ramp goes out 6' and up only 16". I saw that I can up burlap on it to make it not slippery. With all of those ideas I think we would be ok??
     
  5. Pineapple

    Pineapple Chillin' With My Peeps

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    16 inches is pretty tall to quail. People forget how small quail really are compared to chickens. Because they're so small, but also because they are ground dwellers a lot of things that work for chickens do not translate for quail.

    It's really not just because they're much smaller, it's because they're much smaller AND because they fill a different ecological niche.

    This is why there's trouble whenever somebody thinks they can "substitute" quail for chickens. Intentions are always good, but experiences (and results) are not.
     
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2016

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