Two Button Quail and Two Turtle Doves

We are now the proud caretakers of a pair of Button Quail and a pair of Turtle Doves. Not on purpose, but it was really the only thing to do! See, the people that own the strip of land next to the area we rent don’t have a house there, but while they were moving from one place to another, they put most of their belongings there for storage for the time being. That happened on June 28th.

At the time, those belongings included a pen full of chickens and three ducks, as well as a coop with three doves and three quail. During the heat of the summer, when the neighbors, for whatever reason, didn’t make it back to feed and water the poor birds, we did it for them. They didn’t KNOW we were doing this, but they also didn’t seem surprised when they did finally come back and all the birds were all still alive – they seemed completely clueless. (We don’t know these people very well, but we don’t have a very high opinion of them either. Enough said.) After a while (at least a month) they finally came to take the chickens and ducks, which was a big relief as there were foxes and raccoons around that just LOVE chicken and duck.

A month goes by. We ask one of the neighbors (when they stop by to do something with their other belongings or something) when they are planning on moving the quail and doves. He says that the coop is heavy and he needs to get a few guys to help him lift it. (The coop is SORT OF big, but the birds themselves could be moved without the coop.) They don’t thank us for taking care of them or anything. Soon, all the bird seed they’d left there runs out and we start buying it ourselves. Also, one quail, and then a dove die when attacked by a raccoon and pulled through the chicken wire. (Not pretty.) John starts putting a tarp around them at night to help protect them.

Fast forward to today, over four months later, not having seen the neighbors look in on the birds even when they DO stop by the property, John just said screw it, and we took the birds inside our house. We had an old guinea pig cage that works well for the Button Quail (since they’re ground dwellers), and an old bird cage for the Turtle Doves. (We need to get a slightly larger cage for the doves, but this one will do until then.)

They adjusted MARVELOUSLY well, even after the traumatic event of being scooped from the coop in a fish net. We’re wondering if these birds were hand-raised or at least raised inside with lots of humans because they seem really at ease, not freaking out at all! And we’re not even sure if anyone’s going to notice the birds are completely GONE from out there, which is kind of sad, actually.

And here are a few photos of the boyds:

The Button Quail (short and round like feathery baseballs – LOL):

And the turtles doves (they might both technically be ring-neck turtle doves, although the white one has no ring):

All just in time for the holidays – all we really need is a pear tree and we’ll be set.

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