Why won't my button quails lay eggs?

Discussion in 'Quail' started by NeoRoey, Aug 27, 2010.

  1. NeoRoey

    NeoRoey Chillin' With My Peeps

    152
    1
    99
    Aug 27, 2010
    Hello everyone. This is my first post, w00t! My family has been hatching gamebirds for over 20 years now. We've hatched peafowl, guineas, ducks, chickens, runner ducks, just the thought of all those eggs make my head spin! Anyways, we started hatching button quails too. I don't know a lot about them, but I do know that they should be laying eggs by now. As of now, I have only guaranteed 2 of the 3 sexes of my BQs. One of them is male (Tic) and one is female (Tac). They were from the same batch of eggs and were born in mid-July. Then there is Chickapee (no, not Chick Pea). I forgot when he/she was born but assume that it was at least 6 months ago. Anyways, Chickapee has a bib under his/her neck, but I'm not sure if it identifies the gender or is just a coincidental pattern because the bib Chickapee has is over 3 times as thick as the one that Tic has. From a recent feather plucking, I am going to separate them once I know for sure if Chickapee is male or female. The main reason I am posting this topic is to know why I don't see any eggs yet. It may be because they don't get 14 hours of artificial light (they are indoors), but they are close enough to the window that it should provide the light naturally. Why aren't they laying eggs? And is Chickapee a male?
     
  2. Stellar

    Stellar The Quail Lady

    4,203
    32
    251
    Feb 6, 2010
    Tampa Bay
    Chickapee is a male. The bibs is a great way of identifying. If there are red breast feathers, that's another sign. Red vent feathers another [​IMG]

    Button quail are monogamous so the stress of three being together could cause the female not to lay. I assume you are housing them together? UNLESS all three are males. Do you have photos. I can tell you if they are male or female. If there are no bibs, you check the vent for red feathers [​IMG] Hope this helps.
     
  3. NeoRoey

    NeoRoey Chillin' With My Peeps

    152
    1
    99
    Aug 27, 2010
    Thank you for the quick reply.
    Tic: red vent & breast feathers, bib
    Chickapee: bib
    Tac: completely black

    I'll separate Tic.
     
  4. shelleyd2008

    shelleyd2008 the bird is the word

    23,381
    37
    351
    Sep 14, 2008
    Adair Co., KY
    Bibs don't mean that the bird is male. I've had some bibbed females, that is a common misconception with buttons.


    Red breast feathers is a dead giveaway, females don't get those. If the vent feathers (underside of belly near the tail) are different colored than the rest of the feathers (red, rust, or pink), then it is a male.
     
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2010
  5. NeoRoey

    NeoRoey Chillin' With My Peeps

    152
    1
    99
    Aug 27, 2010
    Turns out Tac is a male and Chickapee is female. Why no eggs? He's been mating with her all day for 2 days, maybe more.
     
  6. shelleyd2008

    shelleyd2008 the bird is the word

    23,381
    37
    351
    Sep 14, 2008
    Adair Co., KY
    How old is Chickapee? Your first post says they hatched mid-July? My buttons never start laying before 8 weeks old, but usually more like 10. So just be patient, it's too early [​IMG]
     
  7. Stellar

    Stellar The Quail Lady

    4,203
    32
    251
    Feb 6, 2010
    Tampa Bay
    Sometimes it takes longer...the hen may not be physically mature enough to lay even if she is hormonally. Give it time and patience...
     
  8. NeoRoey

    NeoRoey Chillin' With My Peeps

    152
    1
    99
    Aug 27, 2010
    Tac hatched on July 13, I think, and Chickapee is over 20 weeks old. quailladyoffortmyers, 20 weeks is definitely old enough.
     
  9. Stellar

    Stellar The Quail Lady

    4,203
    32
    251
    Feb 6, 2010
    Tampa Bay
    Patience my friend. You will come to the cage one day and there will be an egg...some hens take longer. I had a pair that took 3 months before they laid. Every body is different.
     
  10. NeoRoey

    NeoRoey Chillin' With My Peeps

    152
    1
    99
    Aug 27, 2010
    How often do they lay once they've laid their first egg?
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by