When Good Quail Go Bad

Otherwise known as: When good boy quail grow up, join a gang, and become racist bullies to the lone white quail.

Poor Peabody.  He’s had a quite a week.  First there was his unexpected sex change from female to male (well, unexpected to ME) and now the two other male quail in the pen decided they hate him.  Yes,  I ended up yet another unexpected male, so I have three females and three males in my coop, and that is not a good combo.  It’s weird – it has to be his color.  They are both brownish and spotted, and they hang out together all the time, perfectly friendly together.  Poor Peabody has been spending all his time hiding in the nest box.

He’s my favorite boy.  I’ve decided HE gets the coop and the females all to himself.  The other two males will be relocated.  I’ve heard about keeping extra males  together in a bachelor pen (this works with roosters, too.)  As long as there are no females present, the males all usually get along fine.  Right before this bullying problem manifested itself, I had stumbled across a quail video.  This one:

Sometime, I hope to have a miniature hen who can raise my quail babies naturally like this!  The video also mentions keeping quail in raised garden beds.  This is what I’m going to do.

I’m building a raised bed in my garden, about 2X6 foot. and I’m going to put the bad boys in there.  If they won’t lay eggs, and won’t behave themselves, the least they can do is earn their keep by weeding my bed and eating the bugs.  I plan to grow tough-leafed plants like cabbage in there, and I’m hoping it will work.  If it does, I might build another matching quail garden bed, split the two males up, and hatch them out a few females in the Spring.  I’ll keep you posted – I’m building the raised bed tomorrow.

These boys!  If I weren’t already bonded to the little guys (and if they weren’t so darn cute) I’d give them over to my quail-raising partner to eat.

And speaking of male quail, I LOVE the sound they make.  It’s so different and exotic.  The below quail video is not of my quail, but that’s the sound they make.  Note: the first sound you hear is a regular rooster.  Wait for the quail to crow – it’s very different.

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