After arriving in New Zealand mid 2013, I immediately commenced with my hobbies, i.e. Coturnix Quail and Ancona Chicken breeding. I was a bit disappointed in the genetic material available and the absence of any controlled national breeding project for any of these animals.
I am an animal scientist with post graduate qualifications and have therefor engaged in a breeding project trying to re-establishing the phenotypical and production traits of the Coturnix coturnix Quail strains in New Zealand (I am doing the same for Ancona chickens, but more about that later). New Zealand Authorities do not allow the importation of new birds or poultry into the country and with a very small gene pool (gene puddle), uncontrolled “breeding” , inbreeding, etc, the variation between strains that is normally detected in other countries does not exist in New Zealand. Most birds, apart from color appear to have the same traits, are very inbred, with low production ability and fecundity.
I have initially limited the project to four strains, but after some breeding and further investigations, have unwillingly expanded it to six strains – the more strains I try to breed and improve successfully the slower my progress will be. After only eight months of breeding some performance results already been achieved and established, because of the short life cycle of these amazing little animals.
If there are any New Zealand Breeders who would like to participate in this project, you are most welcome to give me a call. I am specifically looking for that very special animal you may have bred, which we may like to breed with in this project, in exchange for some of the offspring.
Back Yard Farmer
Tel – +64 211 34 14 52
Dunedin – New Zealand