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Texas quails are raised by farmers who appreciate not only the benefits of eggs, but also the taste of dietary tender meat. Adult birds gain up to 800 grams of weight. Because of these properties, the breed received the unofficial name of the white giant. Bird care is simple. Even beginners can handle albino breeding. But you need to know some of the features of the content.
History of the breed
American breeders worked on the creation of the species. The breed was bred in the state of Texas, which was the reason to give the name to the snow-white birds. Quail colors were obtained from English ancestors. There are several black blotches among the plumage. In purebred individuals, a dark speck is located on the head. The presence of 3 marks is considered normal. The Texans inherited the large size from the Japanese breed. Today white giants are in demand all over the world. In Russia, quail was first bred to obtain eggs. But today meat is also popular in the consumer market.
The appearance and productivity of Texas quails
Texas quails have a number of distinctive external features:
- The body of the birds is large, with a thoracic part protruding forward and a straight back.
- The size of the head is small.
- The pink shade of the beak is not only a sign of the breed, but also a characteristic of the health of the bird.
- Dense white plumage with a black spot on the crown.
Texans are the largest representatives of quail. Albinos grow quickly. Table of weight that birds are gaining by week:
|Age, in weeks||Body weight, g|
|2||up to 150|
|4||up to 260|
|6||up to 390|
|8||400 and more|
Females are usually larger than their gentlemen. And representatives of other breeds of Texas quails are one and a half times larger. With good care, giants gain 700-800 grams of weight. Birds begin to rush when they reach almost 2 months. On average, egg production per year is 260 eggs, each weighing 16 grams, or 4 during a week.
Advantages and disadvantages
Texans compare favorably with other quails. But, along with advantages, birds also have disadvantages.
Rapid weight gain.
The meat yield after slaughter reaches 260 grams.
Earlier onset of the egg production period.
High quality products.
Undemanding to the conditions of detention.
Average egg production. The weight of the product is about 13 grams, sometimes up to 20. But eggs, the weight of which does not exceed 11 grams, are suitable for incubation.
Low sexual activity and, accordingly, a small percentage of fertilization. For 1 quail, no more than 2 females are usually purchased.
Weak offspring. The survival rate is rarely more than 70%. Young animals require increased attention and care.
Increased consumption of food.
The difficulty is also caused by the inability to distinguish between a male and a quail until a certain age. Sexual characteristics appear when it is time to lay eggs.
How to distinguish a female from a male?
Among young animals, the first 2 months of life, males and females look the same. Broiler breeds mature at the age of 50 days. To find out the sex of a Texas quail, you must:
- Take the bird in your hands and put it on its back.
- Carefully spread the plumage in the anal canal area.
- In females, the area around the passage is pink and smooth.
- The male genital organ looks like a small growth, when pressed on which a small amount of white foam comes out.
An indirect sign of the feminine gender is a more melodic chirping. Quails make sharp and abrupt sounds.
Features of maintenance and care
Calm and peaceful Texas quails are undemanding to care for. But that doesn't mean farmers don't have to stick to the rules when breeding.
When kept at home, they pay great attention to lighting issues. Texas quails don't like bright lights. It is preferable to choose a room with windows to the south or east. Cover openings with mesh or light fabric. But the early onset of darkness will be perceived negatively by birds. The livestock day lasts up to 18 hours. After sunset, several lamps with a power of 40, a maximum of 60 watts are turned on. Newborn birds need light around the clock.
The air in the quail pen must be fresh, so the room is ventilated and ventilation is monitored. For sluggish birds, walks in a spacious courtyard are useful. In crowded conditions, large broilers begin to show signs of anxiety. For protection from rats, dogs or cats, it is better to fence off the area with a mesh fence. The canopy will keep the Texas quail out of the bright sun.
When keeping birds in cages, a number of conditions are observed:
- For each individual, a compartment is allocated 35x45 centimeters in size and up to 40 centimeters in height.
- From the outside, feeders and water tanks are installed.
- Slide-out trays are installed to remove droppings.
Poultry farmers also advise to keep quails separate by sex. Laying cages are equipped with egg collectors to prevent crushing of fragile food.
The productivity of Texas quails is influenced by the temperature regime. The cold makes the birds huddle together. Tightness and nervousness often lead to injury. Excess heat has a negative effect on well-being. In the heat, the birds develop shortness of breath. A comfortable temperature is 20 ° C.
The health of birds is affected by moisture indicators. 60-70% are considered optimal. Excess dampness is harmful to Texas quail. Birds begin to lose weight, lay fewer eggs, and can get sick.
The white giants have excellent appetite. With a balanced diet, Texas quails recover quickly and achieve high productivity rates. Albinos eat up to 50 grams of food per day. Young animals almost immediately switch to the diet of adult birds, provided that the products are well chopped. Feeding rules:
- After being released from the shell, the quails need proteins. For the first 3 weeks, the chicks are given boiled eggs and dairy products.
- After 21 days, add greens, bread crumbs.
- Monthly chicks are already allowed to add compound feed, as well as bone meal, chalk or ground fish waste.
The diet of adult quails includes:
- Compound feed based on cereal crops.
- Boiled vegetables. Carrots and mashed potatoes are especially useful.
- Fresh grass.
- Fish oil and other mineral supplements.
- Salt and sea fish for layers.
Farmers make their own feed mixes or purchase ready-made kits, the composition of which is carefully balanced.
Slaughter and rejection
For growing Texas quails, specimens with signs of a pure breed are chosen. Usually these are white birds with rare dark spots. Individuals with a minimum amount of inclusions are considered the best. Small, small stature chicks that are lagging behind in development are not used for breeding. By the age of 5 months, Texas quails are suitable for slaughter. The productivity of hens decreases at the age of six months. It is impractical to grow white giants for more than 6 months.
The ability to incubate is possessed by 3% of Texas quail laying hens. Chicks of this breed are bred only in incubators. Breeding nuances:
- Eggs of 10-month-old females are chosen for growing. In adult quails, the percentage of fertilization is much lower.
- The products are harvested within a week, before laying they are stored at a temperature of 20 ° C.
- Eggs do not need to be turned in the incubator.
- Mass hatching of chicks occurs on the 17th day.
Babies are left to dry in the chamber for 2 hours. If newborn quails are immediately transferred to a brooder, the wet feathers will stick together and harden. This often becomes the cause of the death of babies.
Texas quails are more susceptible to disease than other breeds. Most health problems arise from an unbalanced diet, poor living conditions, or the spread of infection. Often, avitaminosis is observed in birds, cases of cannibalism and baldness have been recorded.
Farmers should call a veterinarian if the quail becomes anxious and plucks feathers. Other dangerous symptoms:
- Refusal to eat and sometimes drink.
- Tousled look.
- Lethargy and the desire to hide in a corner.
- The eyes are often half-closed.
- Elongated neck and head thrown back.
Quails with such characteristics are immediately separated from the general herd. After the diagnosis is established, treatment is started. But, in most cases, improvement occurs after adjusting the diet, eliminating drafts, dampness or other negative factors. It is useful to strengthen the body of quails with vitamin complexes from birth. They begin to be added to the feed of chicks from the third day of life.
Estimated cost and where to buy
There are 2 varieties of Texas quail on the market. When choosing birds, pay attention to productivity:
|Male and layer weight, g||360 and 450||250 and 300|
|Egg production per year, pcs.||200||220|
|Egg weight, g||15||18|
Texas quails are recommended to buy in large farms that are engaged in mass breeding of poultry, or from private owners with a good reputation.
For laying hens, they usually ask for up to 200 rubles for each individual. Young quails are even cheaper. The price for day-old chicks rarely exceeds 50 rubles. Sometimes there are offers for the sale of hatching eggs. The cost of such a product is low (15 rubles), and the risks are high. There is no guarantee that the raw materials were obtained from the Texans. The material may also be unfertilized. Texas quails are gaining more and more popularity. Farmers are not stopped by the difficulty of breeding chicks. Keeping a bird is not difficult. And the demand for products is only growing.