We've a group of Japanese quail; we've got a few in trios as well as in an aviary. We have a few diamond doves and bobwhite quail in the aviary as well; the bobwhite male seems to try to mate some of the girls; but that's it; there's no aggression. I know it's not him as we also have; as just mentioned previously; some in smaller cages in groups of 1 male per two females; and we've still had the same sort of thing happening; so it's not just the males baching each other up; but that seems to be the majority of it. We have about 10 girls to three males (down to two at the moment as the third got severely pecked) in the large aviary; so there's a proprtion more females than males.
They've plenty of water; have Laucke Mills Pullet grower pellets as well as plenty of greens (wheat grass, veggie greens from the garden, etc. etc.) so there shouldn't be any nutrient need or reason for doing in in regards to any lack of anything. They've perches they can get up onto if they want; though of course the Jap quails more stay on the ground. We've never seen them tearing into each other; but it's very obvious they do; and it's never groups of them; it's one that's been picked on; like everyone gangs up on that one; though they'd been absolutely fine with it for weeks and weeks up until that point.
What they're doing is mostly attacking the head. We've had four seperate birds have this happen now; three by males; one by two females. They are literally stripping the skin from the back of the head; ususally from just behind the eyes to the mid-lower neck. We'd had one that had a few smaller wounds around the mid back; too; but still had the head gotten; and one that had a few smaller wounds around the front of the neck; but again; the head had been done. It's horrible; absolutely disqusting; the poor little things must be in such pain - they always make it through with TLC and careful watching of the wounds; but I don't want them to have to go through it; I can't keep going into their run or to their cages and see it; it absolutely turnes the stomach; nearly broke down in tears this morning from this morning's victim; he's literally got his ear holes completly bare of skin; the back of his eye sockets; down to the base of the back of his neck. He seems alert enough still; feeding; drinking still; but it's absolutely horrible. We love our quail; they're such sweet, tame little things; when it comes to us; such cute little things; we just want to be able to have a couple; hatch out a few now and then; but we can't keep having them do this to each other! How do we stop it; WHY are they doing this to each other; I mean; yes; we've had chooks pick on each other now and then but it's generally short lived; or else we take away the main instigators of the pecking; then reintroduce them in a week or so and everything settles out strait away. Turkeys; again; no real agression at all, other than the odd peck at the feeding trough; and the ducks; not even that - why are our sweet little quail mauling each other like this? How do we prevent it, or stop it?
ANY and ALL suggestions would be humoungously appreciated