Quail and Serama – Summer is moving along

The incubator has been going full tilt with quail (Button and Coturnix) and chicken eggs (Serama). I have two Serama chicks I kept from my hatching egg project earlier in the year. They are turning out well with one girl and one boy. The cockeral, Salty, is already showing the well known Serama form and Peppa is quite frizzled. Keeping the birds cool in this August heat has been a chore but they are all making it comfortable by handing out under the bushes.seramapeppa2014

Summer is here! Hens and the heat

We have had a couple weeks straight here of high eighty to low ninety degrees. The hens have the weather down pat and seek out the shady areas of the yard. I have known some past summers where it got to 102 degrees and we see the hens holding out their wings and breathing open beaked. During those times I make sure everyone can get into the shade and has plenty of water. I haven’t lost a bird yet to the heat.

My enclosed porch, where I typically have the brooders, gets very hot in summer so I moved two brooders into my bird room in the house where they have done well. All but 3 of the Button Quail chicks went to new homes (there was 25 total chicks) and the 7 Coturnix quails also went to their new homes. We have not named the 3 Buttons yet- they are pictured in this weeks post. They are so cute and only as small as a bumble bee at this stage!

I enjoyed hatching the quail out so I ordered both Coturnix (red variety this time) and Button quail eggs to hatch in the incubator for the end of July or so. There is quite the market here for them and I have no trouble finding homes for all the babies.

Enjoy the summer and keep cool!

Serama chicks at last!

The incubator and brooder have been busy this week! We had received some shipped eggs and last week had a Japanese chick hatch that my Old English hen was proud to take on as her own chick. Two days later we had two Serama chicks hatch. Looks like one may be a frizzle (curly feathers) and one a straight feather (pictured). They are sweet as Seramas are known to be.

We also started hatching our tuxedo Coturnix Quails. Six as of this writing. Quails make great pets as well as eating the eggs which are considered a delicacy. See my article on Keeping Quails as Pets on my website at http://www.cspotsfarm.com in the quail section.

The adult chicken flock has been seeking the cool spots in the shade due to this heat wave we have been having here in New England. I’ve had the air conditioning going in the house to keep us humans cool. It’s been a bit of a trial making sure the new chicks, chicken and quail alike, warm enough as newly hatched chicks should be but not too hot.

Good luck to all those who are also hatching!


A chicken chick hatches!

A chicken chick hatches!

A Chicken chick hatches! At last 🙂

I guess my Silkied Serama chicken hatching egg project wasn’t totally a bust. I had this little cutie pictured hatch last week. Unfortunately she isn’t one of the Seramas that I paid for but one of the “extra” eggs that are often put in with the ones ordered incase there is damage in shipment. Usually the extras are the same breed but the Serama’s eggs are harder to acquire for shipping (hence why it is so hard to get Silkied Serama hatching eggs). This little cutie is a Japanese Bantam chick.

Little Red Hen is our 7 year old Old English hen that has raised many groups of chicks for us in the past. She adopted this chick within seconds (the chick having been hatched in an incubator) and mom and chick are so cute to watch!

All that I have left for chicken eggs in the incubator is five eggs- 1 silkied Serama, 1 Cochin (an “extra”), 1 frizzle Serama (an “extra”) and 2 straight feathered Seramas (also “extras”). They were all growing at day 10 when candled so hopefully they will all hatch.

On the quail front I have 18 tuxedo Coturnix Quail eggs in the incubator due to hatch around July 4th. I already have people on a list to contact when they hatch. I’m trying to promote the Coturnix as a good pet and I also recently updated my website with some new quail articles and well as revamping practically the whole site. check it out at : http://cspotsfarm.com.

Until next time!

Incubator is going full blast!

Incubator is going full blast!

So our egg incubators are working full blast!

Of the chicken eggs shipped to me from the breeder I can see 5 developing: bantam Cochin, Japanese, 2 straight feather Serama and a frizzle Serama. I also have 18 tuxedo Coturnix Quails in with the chicken eggs. I have been putting my trio of Serama’s eggs in the incubator but they have been turning out infertile. They are small Seramas and the smaller they are the less fertile they are so it’s a balancing act to try to find chickens that lay well and are fertile as well as being a small size.

I won an auction for 20 Button quail eggs on Ebay and the seller accidentally sent me 60 so I had to get the extra incubator out so I have enough room for all the eggs- whew!

It turns out the bald spot on my Eclectus parrot’s neck is an allergy. After lots of expense to find this out we have again adjusted his diet and looks like Joseph is growing his feathers back!

The two little Coturnix quail chicks we kept from the last hatch are doing great. Quail chicks mature very fast. “Peep” and “Chirp” have become quite friendly and are great pets.

I should have an update on hatching chicks next post- until next time!

Those quail chicks!

Those quail chicks!

So my hatching egg project went bust – at least I decided to take a detour and incubate some Coturnix quail eggs which hatched successfully. Melyssa picked out a quail chick to be our special pet quail. A buyer came by to pick up 11 of the baby quails leaving Melyssa’s pick “Peep” and the smallest quail yet to be named. Here they are pictured at just short of 2 weeks old. I enjoyed the adventure of hatching quails so I decided to give it another go and ordered another batch of Coturnix eggs from the same breeder as the Golden Speckled Italian chicks. This time I ordered the tuxedo color which is a chocolate brown with splotches of white.

I’ve been flooded with requests for button quails for the past two years getting requests for them weekly. I decided to also order some Button quail chicks to help those people that are looking to find these lovely small quail. So we’ll have lots of quail eggs in the incubator!

On the chicken front the Seramas are now laying every other day regularly but I don’t think Bugsy is doing his roosterly duties as the eggs have been infertile. I found that he is not feeling well as well as starting to molt so fertility could be down for him. We’ll get him all fixed up and feeling fine and he’ll get a new set of feathers and be feeling fine soon!

My last batch of Serama eggs from a breeder arrived. She also sent Japanese, Cochin and straight feathered Serama (as opposed to silkied) eggs. Of the last batch she sent only one Japanese egg is developing so I have one lone egg and 12 Serama/Coch/Japanese group in the incubator currently. This is the last batch of Serama eggs I plan on ordering as the project has been a disaster and been costly. Hopefully my own trio of silked Seramas will get it together and lay some fertile eggs soon.

Like chickens and quail? Visit my blog at https://loveschickens.wordpress.com !

Hatching Eggs part 9 + 10

Hatching Eggs part 9 + 10

For some reason my part 9 was deleted from my blog so I’m doing a combo 9+ 10 for this week.

The Coturnix quail chicks have hatched! We got 13 out of 16 eggs and all are healthy and doing great. Sadly the two Serama eggs from my own birds were not fertile. Since the last update I’ve gotten the replacement 12 silkied Serama eggs from the seller on ebay (the first batch of 12 didn’t make it- lots of air bubbles in the eggs from broken egg cells). Along with the silkied Serama eggs she sent some extras including Japanese, Cochin, frizzle Serama and straight feather Seramas. Hope I get some Serama chicks from this as this project has been quite costly! My own trio has started laying eggs regularly so hoping some of them are fertile. I’ll have to wait and see!

On a different note, my 2 year old stud colt Miniature Horse Nicholas has been sold and will be moving to Canada. He’ll have a great home there as a breeding stallion. My other Mini “Moon” is looking for a nice pet home.

This postings picture is of my daughter, Melyssa with her favorite quail chick she calls “Peep”. The chick is quite tame and will make a great pet. Love these Coturnix quails!

Hatching Eggs part 8

Hatching Eggs part 8

I’ve been posting of my journey in buying and hatching out some Serama eggs. There have been some ups and downs and here is the latest installment:

As it stands I have 16 golden Italian Coturnix Quails in the incubator. They are due to hatch today! I’ve already gotten requests from people for chicks. I’m happy to say my own silkied Serama trio has laid two eggs. It didn’t look like any more were coming so I let them settle in a cool dark place and then put them in the incubator. I’ll be able to candle them Saturday to see if they are growing.

I heard from the seller of my original Serama eggs that didn’t grow at all. I paid for shipping and she emailed that the first 6 replacement Serama eggs are on their way. The remaining 6 she will send about a week to week and a half from now. It means a staggered hatch but apparently that’s what needs to be done to try and hatch some of these tiny silkied chickens.

Watch for the next update- we should have some chicks!

Pictured is from where the quail eggs came from.

Hatching Eggs part 7

In past posts I’ve written of ordering some hatching chicken and quail eggs. Sadly the chicken eggs all turned out undeveloped. The quail eggs are still going strong.

I contacted the seller on eBay that sold me the dozen silkied Serama eggs. I am happy to report that she was willing to work with me on getting replacements for the eggs that didn’t develop. I know in the past when I’ve sold hatching eggs that if they didn’t hatch out at least one baby that I would offer them replacement eggs free of charge- they would just pay the shipping. The seller agreed to this and she is collecting eggs now for me. She also offered me some straight feather and frizzle as a replacement but I decided to wait for the silkied eggs.

While I wait for the replacement eggs the quail eggs are on day 10 for the Coturnix quail eggs. Coturnix quails need 17 days for hatching so we are getting there! The incubator has been working fabulously in keeping the temperature at 99 degrees and keeping humidity around 50 %.

I’m happy to announce that my new ebook “The Beginner’s Guide to Hatching Chicken Eggs” is now available at http://smashwords.com/books/view/438983 and it’s only $4.95! It covers acquiring the eggs, conditions the eggs should be for best hatch rate, brooding by hen and by incubator, hatching, hatching problems, the brooder and introduction to your flock.

I’m working on a new book which is a collection of true stories that I’ve written over the last 25 years about different animals- ferret, cat, parrot, mini horses and large horses and maybe a few extra 🙂

Only a week to go for the quails to hatch!

Hatching Eggs part 6

Hatching Eggs part 6

In past posts I had related how I had bought some silkied Serama eggs on ebay to incubate. I also won some Coturnix eggs and added them to the incubator as well.

On day 7 and 9 I candled the chicken eggs using a small flashlight in a dark room. On day 7 (the first day that I candled them) I pulled out 4 as infertile and I had a sneaking suspicion that the rest were infertile too but with some hope I left the rest in. When I opened the 4 sure enough there was no growth at all so probably infertile. On day 9 I sadly pulled another 4 and they were the same as the first 4 with no growth. Air cells were intact. I now believe they are all infertile but I left the remaining 6 in the incubator with a small bit of hope.

I know that the hatch rate for shipped eggs can be low and with Seramas it tends to be even lower but to have all of them infertile is very frustrating since I paid $53.10 for 12 Serama eggs and got an extra 2 eggs which were Cochin eggs (the Cochins were coming up infertile too). I plan to email the seller and see if they will do something about it but I’m likely out of luck as shipped egg auctions always list they basically once they leave their hands it’s not their responsibility.

When I used to sell quail eggs for hatching I would always send replacements if they didn’t hatch and wouldn’t charge anything for the extra eggs but the buyer would pay shipping.

Since the Quail eggs are chocolate color with darker spots I can’t candle them but my hopes are that of the 16 some will hatch. Today is day 7 for the quail eggs.

I didn’t want to send another boring picture of eggs so I am sending a picture of blue Silky hen “Charlotte”. Until next time….


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