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Date Posted: 14:38:59 08/12/11 Fri
Author: Susanna
Author Host/IP:
Subject: Re: My silly pet button quail's hysterical new behavior
In reply to: Diane 's message, "Re: My silly pet button quail's hysterical new behavior" on 14:06:14 08/11/11 Thu

Yeah, he's such a riot! Even when he was a tiny chic, he had more personality than the norm and was cracking me up. In his little mind, I AM "his female" so I do get to witness a lot of funny "quail romance" directed towards me. He's always "tidbitting" various things for me...mosquitoes and moths he catches flying in mid air, his feed, fresh pieces of POOP (GAG!!) and sometimes nothing at all..he makes his chirp, chirp, chirp tidbitting call with nothing in his beak just so I go over to see him. I usually pretend to take and eat everything but the poop, I draw the line at that lol. And if he is offering a mealworm or cricket, I have to leave the room or he'll never eat it himself, he'll just keep offering the same bug over and over, no matter how many times I take it from him. Oh and if I'm talking on the phone to someone, it's like he becomes jealous and needy, and starts calling me over with tempting tidbits more than usual (I go, bc I'm totally whipped heh).
He's more bold and fearless than any other quail I've owned, new people don't phase him and he practically never "boinks" up. He's what I call a "full body cuddler" meaning he likes to ram his body against my lips and nose while I'm lying down in bed with him and be completely encircled by my hand; he'll sit there twitching his feathers in excitement and preening my face (and trying to preen my eyelashes which I hate) as I kiss and pet him.
I used to be really confused when he started demonstrating the same behavior that my old female quail did right before she'd lay an egg...making this pitiful whining noise, scratching his sand with his feet like he's making a nest, and just acting plain weird, where he wouldn't sit still long enough to let me touch him but he obviously wanted something from me (by that I mean he'd puff up his butt and raise himself up high on his legs, strutting around and making this sweet chirping noise). Well, I looked it up and apparently this is what is referred to as "the scratching ceremony" between a pair of button quail (where the male and/or female pretend to make nests when they're courting or when they're about to mate). Oh my. Makes me feel a little guilty and sorry for my poor Poot.
There was one peculiar incident that hasn't repeated itself and I'm curious to hear if anyone has ever witnessed it between a male and female b.q. One night, probably close to the time when Poot first started crowing, he was being especially weird and "flirty"...he wouldn't let me touch him (where normally he always wants to crawl into my cupped hand and be pet) and was frantically strutting and racing around with his butt puffed up, making these sweet peeps. I was in bed when I heard him making the softest, sweetest call (so quiet I had to listen hard to make sure it was coming from him). I started to mimic him and make it back to him. This went on for several minutes with us calling back and forth. Well, then it changed to where he started to make the soft whispering noise in perfect unison with me...he'd be completely quiet and the minute I'd make the noise, he'd do it at the exact same moment with perfect timing. At that time, I though "Hmm he must have reached sexual maturity. Wow, and now he totally wants to mate with me. Ew." There have been instances where we've called back and forth to each other, but nothing like that first time.
Sorry for the novel but obviously I am in love with my button quail!...well, we love each other :)

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