Wednesday, 6 February 2013

The Quail Hatch

While my fiancee was at the gym I was on kijiji (nothing new there!). I found an ad online for button and coturnix quail eggs. Needless to say my fiancee got a text that he just had to pick up these quail eggs for me. What a great first experiment.

We got 21 eggs in total.

Here is our first arrival!

I really do have to say. This was my first time hatching anything by myself and it really was a lot harder then I thought. Out of 21 eggs we had 13 hatch, 3 which died right away and one that had splayed legs and eventually died as well. From the 3 that died right away it was all the typical things you read online which I am still kicking myself about - drowning. 2 of which climbed right into the incubator humidifier.

I would have had a much higher hatch rate but after the two drowning incidents I was so concerned about hatchlings climbing in there that I put tons of little rocks in it so they didn't drown. Although it seemed like a good idea at the time it actually left so much less water to up the humidity that most of the rest died during the night hatching out because they were so dry.

Another thing I did notice is keeping them in there for a full 12 hours like you read is really hard to do in such a small incubator. I think that if you have a brooder up to around 35c then it's mostly fine to switch them over once they are almost all dried off.

Hatching something is such a cool experience! On a side note I started off feeding the babies quinoa, broccoli, bread crumbs and other household things. BUT as babies I could tell they weren't coordinated enough to eat it, this could have also been attributed to the crumb size being too big. So we got a supplement that you mix with water called -
We fed the hatchlings from a syringe for about a week, thank goodness it was over Christmas time and my fiancee had time off cause it was definitely a two person job!