Hello! I still exist! So an update. I have a new job that allegedly gives me a better work-life balance though tbh I have yet to balance the sleep-life balance. Much sleeping when not working. It’s a work in progress.
I lost one of the quails 🙁 Not the one that tried to decapitate herself on a feeder – she’s doing fine, didn’t even lose an eye, though she did damage the ligament between ociput and spine. However the brown one (“Brownie”) was found deceased suddenly. She was never right, had her feathers in a bit of disarray since I had her.
As a result the other three moved back indoors over winter, as although they are obviously hard working livestock, and not pets, they are also prone to killing themselves by walking 30 inches, so having them indoors means I keep a closer eye on them. They spent 4-5 months in the utility room quite happily trying to see who could throw poo up the wall highest (3 foot was the record), and have now moved into the kitchen in a larger cage that has high plastic walls to reduce their poo throwing success rate. I was worried that either this would prompt the cats into a frenzy, or cause the quails to have a heart attack about the cats. Reality? Absolutely no reaction from either party. All my animals fail – the carnivores don’t recognise food when it moves into their home, and the prey animals have no survival skills.
It’s working out though. Boy still thinks I am a giant terrifying beast he needs to protect his girls from (when he’s not busy abusing and neglecting them – he’s such a cock) but Heart and Speckle have realised that when I approach the cage, mealworms often fall from the sky.
Anyway, I am now a mad cat lady with house quails. Witness my breakfast today. Poached quail eggs and salmon, on Ryvita crackerbreads, which is the closest thing to bread in my house. With mayo instead of hollandaise. It was very filling (this was I think 14 eggs worth, and the picture is after I’ve already eaten a third of the plate…)
Now, of my two remaining girls, one is laying the most BEAUTIFUL marbled eggs. Smooth, strong and perfect, she’s a winner. The other however is laying the original blue and lumpy brown eggs that break if a quail walks over them (which they regularly do). I can’t show you a comparison as I have sadly eaten them all, so that will follow. Anyway, solution? Grind up the good egg shells and feed them to both girls (since I have no idea who lays what).
I knew the spice mill bit on my food processor would come in handy one day.
I put dried mealworms on top to encourage them to eat it.
We shall see if shell quality improves. Or if they just bathe in the egg dust. Note Boy on the back right, looking at me with suspicion… >.>