Using bantam chickens to hatch and raise coturnix quail?

JacinLarkwell

Crossing the Road
Mar 19, 2020
16,153
33,831
861
South-Eastern Montana
Chick
Why is that? Aren't their behaviors very similar?
Chickens don't get lost very easily, they don't need as much protein and they're larger so they prduce more heat and don't have to constantly be under mama.

Quail get lost very easily (i had to keep mine in a bare brooder so they could find their way back to the lamp), they need almost 2x as much protein as chicken chicks and they're small and can't stay warm by themselves very easily the first week or so. They also just sleep where they fall which is bad when they're relying on a hen that s moving to look for more food
 

Lilyofsalen

Songster
Jul 2, 2020
229
261
111
Could restricting the mother chicken's area to move for the first week solve the getting lost part/requiring more heat part? What if the mother and chicks only had access to high protein gamebird crumbles? Wouldn't bantam chicks and jumbo quail chicks be very similar in size and heat needs?
 

CovidtimeQuail

Songster
Premium Feather Member
Nov 28, 2020
722
1,558
231
Honolulu, HI
. . .

Quail get lost very easily (i had to keep mine in a bare brooder so they could find their way back to the lamp), they need almost 2x as much protein as chicken chicks and they're small and can't stay warm by themselves very easily the first week or so. They also just sleep where they fall which is bad when they're relying on a hen that s moving to look for more food

Laughed when I saw this. Our whole family marveled over how quail chicks fell asleep mid-action and on their feet.
 

JacinLarkwell

Crossing the Road
Mar 19, 2020
16,153
33,831
861
South-Eastern Montana
Could restricting the mother chicken's area to move for the first week solve the getting lost part/requiring more heat part? What if the mother and chicks only had access to high protein gamebird crumbles? Wouldn't bantam chicks and jumbo quail chicks be very similar in size and heat needs?
Jumbo quail hatch the same size as normal quail. The mother would have to stay practically still or have maybe a foot or so extra space to not risk babies getting lost and chilled
 

BethReed

In the Brooder
Nov 17, 2020
19
60
48
https://www.backyardchickens.com/threads/➡-quail-hatch-along.1276785/post-23709254
@BethReed seems to be having some success with it
I used my silkies as incubator alternative but did not allow them to hatch or brood

The silkie I’m using is one of my smallest. I set her up in one of the plastic tub brooders I use for quail chicks. I made up a nest in a cozy cardboard box at one end with feed and water at the opposite end. I used a jar type quail waterer and a shallow lipped bucket lid with game bird starter - the same things I use for newly hatched quail normally.

I let her sit for a few days on golf balls while getting her used to me lifting her off the nest for potty breaks and dust bathing daily. Once I was sure this wouldn’t upset her and cause her to abandon the nest, I traded a dozen quail eggs for the golf balls during one of her daily excursions. She immediately arranged them to suit her preferences and became even more dedicated.

Chicks started hatching last weekend and she successfully hatched 9/12. As others hatched in the incubator, I added them by tucking them under her at night. She’s now fostering 41 chicks and they are thriving.

Notes:

1. Mama Hen and babies don’t speak the same language at first. They have to learn to interpret her calls to come snuggle up, eat, etc.

2. I have her inside a heated outbuilding with supplemental heat at one end of the brooder just in case babies wander too far. This is a bit of a risk for about the first 24 hours after hatching, by which time they’ve learned to use her as a heat source.

3. Someone in the other thread mentioned a risk of the chicks tangling in her fluff. I didn’t expect this to be a problem but decided to trim her under fluff some just to be safe. After seeing the way they use her as a jungle gym, I think this was a good choice.

4. She is easily able to cover 40+ quail chicks. They are all responsive to her calls now and are doing great!

5. I plan to remove the secondary heat source sometime in the next day or two. The building is heated to 65 F.
 

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom