About

We  moved into our house in July 2008.  Our home is 5.5 miles from downtown Sacramento and smack dab in the middle of suburbia.  Despite our location, our obvious lack of land, and our busy schedules (we both work full-time), we’re attempting to increase our self-sufficiency as best we can.

So if you, too, live in a suburban area and are interested in minimizing your impact on the earth (and your wallet), join us as we document both our successes and our failures!

11 thoughts on “About

  1. I love your quail hutch and plan to make one. I’m new to quail and don’t understand where they would lay their eggs in the hutch, and how you would collect them. Do I need built-ins specifically for this purpose?

    • Hey Schroeder! Our quails tend to lay their eggs in the closed area of the quail hutch. However, sometimes they’ll also just drop them on the wire. Unlike with chickens, there does not need to be a specific area for the quails to lay their eggs. Nor do the quails ever get broody, so they won’t sit on their eggs either. Let me know if you have any more questions, and feel free to email me! I’m happy to help!

  2. Hi There,
    I love your website!
    I too to grow summer veggies and have a few fruit trees/berry bushes. It’s amazing how productive a small garden can be!
    I found your website while doing a search on how to build quail cages. Thanks for the great pictures and design plan. Construction of my quail pens is almost under way.
    I have a batch of Coturnix that will (hopefully-first attempt at incubation) hatch about the 17th of this month. If my hatch is successfull and I end up with too many quail would you be interested in taking some? I just read you live in West Sac. Very cool. I live in Elk Grove.
    Also, can you tell me if your neighbors have been receptive to your quail? Are the hens noisy? I wasn’t going to tell anyone one about my quail for fear of being turned into the county. I too live in a subdivision and I am not zoned for poultry/gamebirds so I hope those hens don’t make too much noise. I was going to rehome the roosters as I understand they are louder.
    Thanks for the great blog!
    Katie

    • Hey Katie, sorry so long for the reply – I had a family emergency. I’d love to do some quail trading with you sometime! We can keep our flocks less genetically related that way. My neighbors don’t mind the quail. It helps if you bring them some eggs once in a while. I don’t think we’re zoned for poultry either, but these things are so small, I think of them more as pets.

      The hens are very, very quiet. They’ll make a cricket-like chirping sound when they’re scared, but other than that they only make little cooing sounds. I keep three roosters. They are definitely louder. With the proper ratio of hens to roosters, they crow maybe three times a day. And some roosters are louder than others. I try to keep the most quiet ones.

      Let me know if you have any more questions, and feel free to drop me a line! I’m always excited to meet others in the area who are keeping quails/chickens and vegetable gardening!

      • Hi there,
        I hope your family is doing well.
        I would love to trade some birds with you in the future. I actually have a few you can have if you want. I am keeping most of the hens, and only 2 of the 20 roo’s. The rest will be dinner (not sure how I feel about this). I purchased a mix of eggs from a wonderful breeder in Oregon. She said that the eggs where taken from various breeder cages, so I should be safe breeding the various breeds from this hatch. I have Italian, Tibetan, English or Texas A&M (they are white with a few brown dots on their heads and backs) and standard brown. These birds are 4.5 weeks old and they are ready to go, let me know if you want a few.
        Thanks for the info! I am sooo excited to get some eggs!
        Also, we are looking for homes for our soon to be born baby bunnies. Can you pass the word on to anyone you think might be interested. We thought we had 2 boys, and oops we had a girl and boy. They should be born within the next 2 weeks. By Easter they should be between 8 and 9 weeks old. The mom is a purebred Dutch, and dad is a Holland Lop. Both breeds mature to about 4-5 pounds, so they are not a large breed.
        Cheers
        Katie

  3. Hi…I talked with Schroeder over on BYC, and love yours and his Quail hutches. I am hatching some Chukar Partridge and Cortunix Quail within the next 20 days, and would LOVE to build your hutches. I can only find the link to Quail hutch part III on your site…can you point me to the beginning of your quail hutch build??

    Thank you so much

    Dan

  4. I was wondering if you still had the quail? If so how has it been with the neighbors? Are they messy or smell I am looking at getting some but have to keep them in the garage in the winter until spring (live in minnesota).

    • We do still have the quails! It has been fine with the neighbors. With the right ratio of males to females, we rarely notice them there. They crow maybe 3x a day tops, and it’s so exotic a sound, no one will probably even know what it’s from. If it becomes a problem, you can always cull the males and keep the females. The females only make little cheeping noises.

      Quails do three things well – eat, lay eggs, and poop. They do create a lot of poop. If you clean the poop boards regularly, I don’t think it should be a problem. Mostly smell comes from letting it accumulate for far too long, or from the poop getting moist. Then it is RANK. It is poop, after all. I don’t really notice an odor from ours unless it gets wet, but it is also outside.

  5. Nice Blog! I’m a year into a similar project in my South Florida yard, so I am reading everything I can on the subject. Thanks for taking the time to blog about your efforts.

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