What am I doing wrong? Quail

Discussion in 'Quail' started by silentrunning, Apr 27, 2009.

  1. silentrunning

    silentrunning Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 18, 2009
    Venice, Florida
    Last week I found one of my coturnix quails scalped and one eye missing. I was mad because I had made the coop critter proof. Now my wife called and said a second one is in the same shape. I have 5 quails in a very large cage with straw and branches for cover. These are young quail and one has started laying. The others may be all males - I don't know. I do know that one of them is the culprit and not any critter that could get in because a fly couldn't get in their cage at night. I am about ready to throw in the towel and have a nice Quail dinner and just stick to chickens. is there any alternative?

    Doug
     
  2. Steve_of_sandspoultry

    Steve_of_sandspoultry Overrun With Chickens

    That could be you have to many males. Have you checked to see what the ratio is?

    Steve in NC
     
  3. CheerfulChaos

    CheerfulChaos Out Of The Brooder

    Ditto what Steve said. Too many males and they will fight relentlessly. If you've got one that is attacking everything that moves, put him in a different cage or large container by himself. If you've got anything but browns or goldens, you won't be able to tell the males until they start crowing, so you have to really watch them in order to get them sorted out before they kill each other. Sometimes even if you have a good ratio (1 male to 3-5 females), the male will scalp and blind the females because he's ready to breed but they aren't ready yet. I had this happen. I ended up removing the male, letting the females heal, then re-introducing the male back into their cage a few weeks later. It worked and they're getting along now. Once they get sorted out and all the quails are breeding, things seem to calm down quite a bit. But be prepared to do the swap and isolate trick until then. Don't give up on Coturnix, they can be very rewarding!
     
  4. monarc23

    monarc23 Coturnix Obsessed

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    Jul 18, 2008
    Indiana, Pennsylvania
    If it's that you don't have too many males you just may have one very aggressive bird (male or female). I had a roo in with 3 hens he scalped 2 of them (thought he took the ones eye out but it came back so he must have shoved it into her skull until it healed [​IMG]). All i did was removed the hurt birds in that situation because all that was going on was the birds that got hurt werent willing to mate and the roo wanted to.

    Now in a situation where you have too many roos they are either fighting or are torchering the hens. Hens even will scalp other birds.


    What i'd do is find out who's doin gthe damage (normally just one bird but in some cases can be more than one) and remove them. Either cull them or give htem a time out until all the other birds heal.
     
  5. silentrunning

    silentrunning Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 18, 2009
    Venice, Florida
    Thanks all! My wife went to the thrift store and got a couple of bird cages so we will seperate them until we decide who the culprit is. Once we figure out which one it is I have a special place for him. It's right next to the mashed potatoes.

    Doug
     
  6. CheerfulChaos

    CheerfulChaos Out Of The Brooder

    Quote:[​IMG] That's exactly what we did with one of our problem quail (an extra male that tore up everybody within reach). He's currently stashed in our freezer waiting for his debut on my dinner plate. [​IMG]
     
  7. monarc23

    monarc23 Coturnix Obsessed

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    Jul 18, 2008
    Indiana, Pennsylvania
    [​IMG]s


    someone on here had a cute quote about roos.... it was


    "why do the meanest roos taste so good!?"

    [​IMG]
     
  8. silentrunning

    silentrunning Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 18, 2009
    Venice, Florida
    I like it.

    Sweetshoplady said that quails are just too tasty for their own good. Somewhere out in my cage is a little roo that is going to prove both statements. [​IMG]

    Doug
     
  9. LilRalphieRoosmama

    LilRalphieRoosmama Officially Quacked

    Oct 15, 2007
    Elyria, OH
    I agree - I've had that happen alot. If it's any consolation, they heal REALLY fast. I don't even separate them anymore - just let it play out. I've had more problems putting the healed ones back with the group. If you can find out who is causing the problem, definitely make them dinner. Once they get past this stage it won't happen very often.
     
  10. sweetshoplady

    sweetshoplady Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 4, 2008
    Venice, Florida
    Sorry to hear that your quail are fighting.

    The one that might be a second male is that neat colored one. The males have a bump under their tail. See this wonderful thread by Monarc. https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=102281

    It
    has a pic of that "bump"

    Sometimes, the girls fight too though. They can be very mean to each other - even if raised together.

    ETA, you're not doing anything wrong. It's something that happens sometimes. When it starts happening in my grower pens, that's when they go to the dinner table.

    A man I bought some bob whites from told me that he clips their beaks with a nail clipper (just the tip of the top part) they can go after each other but do no damage. Same concept as cutting the tips off of the horns of bucking bulls.
     
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2009

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