Two male quail and one female taking care of eggs together?

Discussion in 'Quail' started by RabbitsQuailsSilkies, Apr 16, 2019.

  1. RabbitsQuailsSilkies

    RabbitsQuailsSilkies In the Brooder

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    So. I just figured out two out of the three quail I have are male. I didn't realize it before because they weren't showing any signs or anything. (They aren't pharoh I think they are...Tibetan maybe) my female layed an egg in a nest she made on the 7th and usually I take the egg out but I decided to wait and see what she would do. I put a small upside down cardboard box over the nest and there is a big whole cut out in the side as a door. Now she has 4 eggs in the nest and both the males and her go in there throughout the day to turn the eggs and sometimes sit on them. I'm surprised the males haven't been quarrelling but it kind of seems as though both of them think they are the father. I know that the chicks might not turn out so great as is what I'm hearing from other people's experience when letting the parents incubate the eggs themselves but this is just an experiment. I was wondering if there was anything I could do to help them. Maybe take care of the eggs better. And, does she know if they are fertile or not, and does she get rid of them if they aren't? I haven't touched the eggs because I read they might not go back to the nest since they are pretty skittish. Any help about any of the is would be greatly appreciated! Thank you!
     
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2019
  2. tacothechicken

    tacothechicken Songster

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    She doesn't 'know' but she may have an internal clock that will tell her to give up a certain number of days post probable due date as she can't hear/feel chicks moving under her in the eggs and realized none will be hatching at that point :)
     
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  3. RabbitsQuailsSilkies

    RabbitsQuailsSilkies In the Brooder

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    One of the male quails pulled out a small chunck of feathers from the females neck and it was bleeding when I came to check on them before going to bed. I wanted to move the female into a new cage until I find a solution but I didn't want to touch the eggs so I've moved both the males into a new cage for the night. I m going to have to separate them so that that don't mess with each other tomorrow.
     
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  4. RabbitsQuailsSilkies

    RabbitsQuailsSilkies In the Brooder

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    Yes, that's kind of what I was thinking would happen. What if some of them are fertile, and some aren't? Do I need to remove them? And how would I do so if I am not supposed to touch the fertile ones?
     
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2019
  5. tacothechicken

    tacothechicken Songster

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    Shell know for sure a few days before hatch, she'll sit for a day or 2 post first chick to give others time to hatch and then will get off nest to lead chicks to food and water regardless of any unhatched eggs as babies must eat and drink in a certain time span. You could candle but that might spook her into abandonment. I'd just leave food and water in close range and in around 18 days you should know if any of the eggs were fertile as you'll have chicks! Leaving infertile eggs in a nest long-term won't do any harm to the fertile eggs.
     
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  6. tacothechicken

    tacothechicken Songster

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    If you've been collecting past eggs in fridge you can crack them to see if they were fertile(should have a bullseye pattern) and it'll give you an idea as to if her current ones are fertile. She's been whith two boys so I'm assuming they all are!
     
  7. RabbitsQuailsSilkies

    RabbitsQuailsSilkies In the Brooder

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    That's good. Do you think my moving the males out will disturb her or make her feel lonely? The current male cage is about 4 feet away from her cage but I can see if I can rearrange to make it closer if that will be of any help? And what should I do about her neck. Right now to treat it and preventing it in the future?
     
  8. CoturnixComplex

    CoturnixComplex Crowing

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    You can schmear her neck feathers with coconut oil or Vaseline to prevent the males from getting ahold. Of course, this makes some males give up and some just get mean, so watch them.
     
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  9. DK newbie

    DK newbie Songster

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    As far as I can tell, it's a bit early to worry about her abandoning the eggs for whatever reason - just going to the eggs and turning them sometimes doesn't mean she's going to become broody and actually sit on them for 18 days straight.
    If she's broody, she won't leave them for more than 30 minutes at a time and only a few times a day. This rarely happens in coturnix quail (I'm assuming thats' what you have?) and although laying the eggs in the same place and turning them is a positive sign it's still a very long way from a broody coturnix.
    If she does go broody, she won't let the roos anywhere near the nest anyway, so them being gone is not a bad thing. But if she was actually going to become broody, any change - such as removing the males og you sticking your hands into her nest (it has nothing to do with actually touching the eggs, it's disturbance itself that's the issue) - might stress her out of getting broody.

    With regards to her neck, spray some blue cote (I think it's called?) on it and let her live alone till it's healed. After that, never put her with 2 males again and you should seriously consider getting more females - 1:4 is a good ratio for coturnix.
     
    Little Jerry Seinfeld likes this.
  10. RabbitsQuailsSilkies

    RabbitsQuailsSilkies In the Brooder

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    I'm currently looking for more females but they don't come around that often here. I didn't know there was two males until last week because I got them during winter and they weren't showing any signs whatsoever. Venting didn't even work. Not until now. Yes they are coturnix. I read that the females and males take care of the eggs? Is that wrong? Because they were all turning them and sitting on them.
     

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