Monthly Archives: April 2013

Quail Coop – First Day of Construction

Actually, there’s not much construction, mostly destruction.  The first step is digging out the foundation.   The chickens helped; I had one or two out digging with me all day!  It makes a nasty job slightly more enjoyable.  This is Ellie, who is my most favorite pet ever.  Whenever I sat down to take a rest, she hopped up onto my lap to snuggle.

At the end of the day, the sod was gone, but we still have to dig out the rest of the hole.  Thankfully that’s the easier part of the job!

After we dig out the dirt, the next step is laying a protective layer of wire, and then putting stones around the edge.  You can see the first one already in place, there at the upper left of the hole.

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Quail

This year’s Spring project is adding quail to our backyard.  My friend Laura has also wanted to get them, so this year we are pushing each other into finally making this the year of quail.

Coturnix quail.  These guys.

Also known as Pharoah Quail, since they were so important to the Ancient Egyptians that they have their own hieroglyph.

This means, of course, that since the chickens are named after Queens, these new birds must be named after Egyptian royalty!  If all goes well, I’ll start out with four quail: one male and three females.  Front-running names right now are Ramses, Nefertiti, Hatchepsut, and Arsinoe.  Another friend named Laura (I swear every other person I know is named Laura!) suggested I call the quail’s coop the Coop de Nile, which will probably stick.

The coop is going to have a garden roof, somewhat like this one:

I plan to grow strawberries on it, as I’ve been needing to make a new bed for the strawberries.  “Sparkle” strawberries and these very pretty white ones, called “White Soul”.  The white ones I’m growing from seed, so I hope all goes well.

Can’t you just see how pretty the combination of white and red fruit is going to look?

Inside the coop, I want it to be natural for the quail, so I’ll give them a floor of dirt and sand, with different varieties of grass growing.

Laura and I are going to borrow an incubator and hatch our own quail chicks.  We hope.  *fingers crossed*  I have successfully hatched a duck before, so surely quail can’t be that different?  Look at how tiny the just-hatched baby quail are!

One of the major reasons why I want quail is for the eggs.  They are even healthier than chicken eggs – just packed full of nutrients!  And I’ve heard, although I’ve never actually tasted one, that they are wonderfully flavored.  And, they are so small and cute.

Our plans are to have the eggs in the incubator by the end of May.  And I intend to blog about the entire process, from building the coop, to hatching the eggs, to gathering the first eggs.