quail coop

Quail Coop and Quail Run Upgrade

| October 6, 2016
Photo Credit: Keith Knoxsville
A Hen and a Drake Green Teal on the truck bed. Not a limit on anything, but a fun morning out.

Although I was happy with the look and engineering of my quail coop, I still had a major drawback. Odor. The quail would would get water on quail feed that they had scattered on the floor and the coop would end up smelling bad enough to annoy me.

 

Quail Run

 

I decided to let them have a run outside for food and water, and the coop purely for warmth and protection. I prefer to let the quail have a more natural habitat anyway, and I want them to maximize sunlight in winter. The result is happy quail that spend time outside when they would like, but can get shelter, warmth, and dust bathe inside in pine shavings when they want to escape the elements.

 

Quail Coop and Run

The run is 4 feet by 4 feet, and about 4 feet tall with a steep roof for snow loading. It is wrapped in 1/2 inch hardware cloth, and has a large door for ease of human access. A small 2 foot bridge connects the run to the coop. The coop is 1.5 feet by 4 feet, with a steep roof, a door, and 2 large plexiglass windows. The coop also has a hardwired bulb for warmth, and the quail water will utilize a thermostatic heating element to keep from freezing.

 

Quail Coop and Run 2

 

I also did a little faux painting with rattle cans to turn my donated green metal roof into a more aesthetically appealing rustic tin color. I also painted, stained, and white washed the coop and run. It looks a little like a child’s doll house now. No the craftsmanship is not shoddy, its simply reclaimed lumber made to work for my application.  So if you seed odd cuts and shapes, that is why.  Leave a comment, an let me know what you think, as well as any other suggestions for quail keeping.

 

Quail in Run

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Quail Coop Revisions

| December 10, 2015
Photo Credit: Keith Knoxsville
A Hen and a Drake Green Teal on the truck bed. Not a limit on anything, but a fun morning out.

We raise our coturnix quail in WY. The temperatures from mid summer to mid winter range from 90+ degrees to -25 Fahrenheit, and the wind during different parts of the year can be 50+ mph.

This requires a flexible coop. One that is as good in summer as it is in winter. With the weather being awful now, I wont make any changes to the current design that you can see in pictures. Except the addition of a new circulated, heated water system.

Quail Coop Glamour Shot

Quail Coop Cock Walk

The design includes a few basic things that allows it to work.

The coop is mostly solid walled with good ventilation. Its built onto a stock tank, so the 1st foot of wall from the ground is solid metal and totally draft free.

A dark colored 25 watt bulb was wired into each covey, and the common area, and is enough supplemental heat to keep quail happy. These bulbs turn on with a thermostat when temps go below 35F.

During the summer the front swinging hutch style window/doors allow a ton of fresh cool airflow through 1/4″ hardware cloth. I placed mirror hangers on the door frames and covered them 90% with plexiglass panels for winter. They provide insulation and draft protection.

Removable wooden panels cover wire mesh vents at the top of the coop during winter. There is still plenty of ventilation, just no drafts.

The bedding is a combination of straw, pine shavings, and sand. Which allows fairly easy clean up, whilst providing a good war bedding, even if the heat bulbs don’t operate.

I often wonder how miserable they are and check on them, just to find they are all content in their winterized coop.

They are fine in some really terrible weather, even without additional heat. Any aggressive males can be placed in the cock walk. An internal elevated caged area that can also be used for controlled breeding. A shroud over the bulb keeps the bulb from getting dirty.

I hope this helps anyone considering raising quail in a cold area. Leave me a comment or send me an email if you have any questions.

I’m already bouncing around new coop ideas and improvements, but for this winter in WY this will suffice.

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