I had never seen a quail in person, let alone a teeny, weeny hatchling before. And the second I peered into the incubator and say the floofy little chick I was in love. I can’t express how sweet they are—and teeny!
We had a great quail egg hatch rate for eggs that traveled in a cooler in our pickup bed for 2500-miles over a six day road trip up the east coast last month. We packed layers of cartons between layers of bed-topper foam cut to size. I stuffed cotton balls around the eggs inside the cartons. For the bottom layer I bought plastic camping egg cartons to ensure they didn’t get squashed.
Not a single crack and development looks fabulous—accept I can’t see into those dark chocolate marans eggs, oh the suspense.
Building a three-tier quail brooder
Kevin dropped a log on the sawmill rails and worked his magic. POOF a few hours later he had the lumber milled, planed and cut to size for our three-tier quail brooder hutch.
By that afternoon the frame was together and we were making the slide out floor panels. I’ll be making an in-depth post on the project after we make a couple more that will be modified to have rollout egg collection trays built into the mesh floor.
See the video by Coturnix Corner we are using the plans from below. The cut list provided with this video is missing three center floor support pieces, plus we are making a few mods, so stayed tuned for the update sometime next month.
Chicks are due soon too!
The chicks are due in just a few more days. With well over 200 chicks hatching, we plan to brood them in a kiddie pool on our dining room table. Welcome to farm life! For the first week of life they will be kept in a sterile as possible environment following a Marek’s vaccination at a day old. We still don’t have a roof on the barn, but at this point the race is on. Photos of set up to come.
See information on our breeds HERE.
The mealworms launch last month has been wildly successful. We met our goal of four biweekly subscribers on the first day, and have mailed two one-time purchase boxes out of state so far. We set up a local pick up schedule on our website and opened up two more subscriber spots and restocked a single one-time purchase. There’s about 5k pupae hatching in the next week as our oldest beetles phase out. I’m considering adding a dried beetle and borage blossom treat mix to the shop next week.
The mealworms should be a great food source for the quail, which require a high protein diet. I’m looking into getting a nutritional evaluation done on the mealworms soon at a food lab.
The ticks are terrible this year…
The ticks are insane here this spring. The acres of lawn here got away from me while we were on vacation, then shortly after I had a terrible cold. I haven’t taken a walk in the woods. Kevin and I walked only 100-feet into the woods to check on a living tree sculpture I’ve been dying to see bud-out and had nine on me in seconds. We decided it wasn’t worth it, and quickly turned back.
I’m planting two large wildflower plots this week. They are a mix of self-seeding annuals and perennials, mostly native to Maine. I’d like to think we will have bees next year. It will be good to have flowers established for them. The only issue with that is the seeds attract mice, which carry ticks. To combat the issue, I’m making permethrin-coated cotton ball tubes. The mice find the cotton and use it for bedding. It does not harm them, but it kills the ticks that attach to them and prevents them from maturing to the next stage of the lifecycle when they attach to deer—and my very fluffy dog. He had one inside his ear yesterday, poor little baby.
There is a great article I found about making permethrin-coated cotton ball tubes HERE.