Monday, November 26, 2012

Housing Coturnix quail

So today i bought the hutch i will use to house my quail!  It's very nice and LARGE so it will be good for plenty of quail. The dimentions are 5 feet by 2 feet so it should be plenty of room for 20+ birds.
 I bought it from a local company, because a lot of the Hutches and cages available online seem pretty low quality. OR should i say... QUAIL-ity! Har. Har. Har. No really. I'm kidding. Don't worry.

Time for a few snazzy facts about housing Coturnix quail!

                  1. The minimum size is 1 square foot of floor space for every quail. Some people give more space and some people give less. Many people keep their birds on only 1/2 square feet per bird. But 1 square foot is a good minimum. 

               2. The roof should be either under 18 inches high, or over 6 feet hight. ( This worries me slightly, because the roof of this hutch is a bit high. I might have to put padding on the roof so the little guys don't bonk their heads to hard. ) The reason that you you need a lower or very high roof, is that nervous quail sometimes fly up really quickly and bonk their heads on the roof! 

              3. The wire spacing for the floor should be 1/2 inch. Any bigger spacing and the quail's little feet will fall through!

             4. Coturnix are super cold hardy but there should be somewhere draft-free with solid sides where they can huddle away from the cold. 

            5. Having a wire floor with a pull out tray is much best- it is supposed to make cleaning much easier. Don't worry, these little birds are much better adapted to living on wire then chickens are!

That's all for now! The eggs hatch in 4 days :)

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Candling the eggs....

Today is the 8th day of incubation. The hatching eggs are looking very nice!

Today i decided to attempt candling them with nothing more with a piece of cardboard and a strong flashlight. I have heard that it is nearly impossible to candle quail eggs, because the shell is so thick. But i decided to attempt anyways. 

Candling is a process where incubating eggs are held over a bright light in a dark room, allowing one to see the developing chick inside.

This is the least speckled quail egg i could find, so thought it would be perfect.
You can't see much detail, but you can see the outline of the yolk, and the air pocket. Since i am a complete newbie at this, i have no idea if this egg is going to hatch or not. But still it was cool to be able to see this much.

I candled some of the other eggs, and i found this one with a pretty big crack in it. I am going to keep it in the incubator on the off chance that it will hatch. I think that since none of the white is pouring out, it should be fine.

Only 9 days left until hatch! 

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Quail feed!

I just purchased some quail feed and feeders from tractor supply
These simple red and white feeders are generally used for baby chicks, but i think they will will be great for adult quail!

This is the only feed i could find with enough protein for growing quail. It has 24% protein, a good amount for baby quail. You can feed them chicken food but they will grow much slower and won't be as healthy.

So there you are! 13 days until hatch.

Friday, November 16, 2012

The Hatching eggs.

So they arrived earlier then i had expected! Instead of a mere 24 of them, i got sent 6 extras. Every single one of them is intact!

This is how they came packed.
 They are all different beautiful colors!!

But since they arrived earlier than i thought they would, i didn't have the incubator set up. So after a few major temp swings, i got it to a nice 101 degrees.

Reasons they might not hatch:

The major tempurature swing at the beginning! I hope I caught it in time and all of the eggs are okay!

It's a home made incubator. I have no idea how reliable it is...

It got shipped and who knows how they were tossed around!

I have never done this before.

Reasons they may hatch. 

I am making sure to turn them 3 times a day.

They were packed very nicely, and none of them were broken.

The incubator is at a really nice tempature now!

There are 30 of them so chances are at least a few will hatch.

16 days until hatch! 


Sunday, November 11, 2012

The hatching eggs have been ordered!

I ordered the hatching eggs off ebay this morning. I purchased them for a very reasonable 17$ for two dozen eggs, and that includes shipping!

The eggs should arrive in about a week. I'm so excited!