Female Chinese painted quail, US Red-breasted changing to male coloration

Another very interesting young female bird, born in my aviaries in 2021.
Firstly grown with normal coloration until adulthood this female has progressively changed to a male coloration.
Those pictures clearly show us the apparition of the typical “blue” male feathers and the bib drawing on remaining female background colors.

Because this rare phenomenon tends to be repeated on a very regular basis in my breeding for at least three years, I am busy looking for an explanation for it.

European quail, male (Coturnix coturnix) from breeding 2020.

European quail, male (2020)

The under-reported pictures show you a nice male of the European quail, born in my aviaries during the breeding season of 2020.
He is a little bit darker than most of the other breeding males I have, but we always have to keep in mind that variations exist, also in nature.
This species has indeed a very large repartition range from Europe to Asia, and already in Europe significant color differences are visible between our birds and those of Eastern Europe.
Because I don’t have enough females, he will be not paired and remain as a reservist.
It is a little bit sad this year because three other very nice-typed male birds also have no female for this new season…

Chinese painted quails males, ivory color-combination

Ivory males

I wanted to share with you on this Website a few pictures of the first “qualitative” ivory males bred in my aviaries. It was in 2013, from a bloodline obtained by a well-known breeder from ‘s Hertogenbosch, in the Netherlands.
We clearly notice the mix of both silver and brown recessive mutations producing this very delicate ground coloration.
A particularity of the ivory phenotype, only visible on males birds, is those darker anthracite patches on the breast.
The pictures below were taken on October 24th, 2013.

An old, intensive male of Chinese painted quail, US Red-Breasted mutation.

Intensive Red-breasted male

This intensive, short-feathered US Red-breasted male is now very old.
I took those pictures on February 13th, 2021. He is more than 5 years old…
Often very older males start to develop white feathers when they never had any before.
It starts with the cheeks (a bit like old dogs) and then white feathers appear a bit randomly on the body, more often on the back.
From him, I produced many sons of exceptional quality (and without any white spots of course!)
It is with such males, mated to brown females with soft feathers that I have built my best US Red-breasted strain.

Ps: I really liked this male at the time because of his red iris eyes.
Wild, genetically pure birds also display this characteristic.

Female Chinese painted quail, US Red-breasted brown possible ‘grey form’.

Chinese painted quail female

The bird I am now reporting some pictures below is a female and its coloring is quite exceptional insofar as I have never seen or produced similar before.
Initially, it was a rather pale brown US-Redbreasted bird.
As the most expert among us know it well: the palette of shades of brown is rather wide in the Chinese painted quail species.
This is undoubtedly less known, but there are also brown birds that are referred to as the ‘grey form’. This is reported by a well-known American specialist, but I can’t remember exactly if it is from Jody Mc Donald’s pen or that from Garrie J. Landry.

What I noticed, is that this bird has evolved after its first moult, and besides the development of red feathers at the base of the tail (which is generally an attribute specific to males) the coloring of its back has changed, turning to silver.
For now, I don’t know if this should be the expression of the ‘grey form’ of the brown on a US Red-breasted phenotype.
The impression I have is of an opal-bird like in the Common chaffinch,
or an ivory bird (brown + silver) where the hues would not have mixed together well but rather assembled.
We can see brown areas and gray areas, it does not look at all like a classic ivory female like those dozens I produce every year.

Personally, I find this aesthetically beautiful female.
I just hope that it is not (yet) a female that is changing color and that she will stay like that because this color change phenomenon occurs more and more frequently in my breeding!

How God creates wonders… Enjoy!

Male Chinese painted quail, US Red-Breasted brown.

US Red-breasted brown male

A breeding bird descended from a paternal line of animals having very intensely colored redbreasts.
I prefer using the term brown instead of “cinnamon” because those brown birds have recessive heredity. Real cinnamons, as far as I can get some of them because I know there exists … have pink eyes the 1st week of life and the mutation is sex-linked.

A female of Chinese painted quail, (golden) pearl Fallow combination.

Golden pearl Fallow Fallow female

The photos below are of a female (golden) pearl Fallow born in my aviaries in 2020.
She is a carrier of the US Red-Breasted mutation.
Ancestry:
Her father was a wild colored pearl, carrier of Fallow
Her mother was a US Red-breasted silver, carrier of Fallow.

I got two young Fallow birds from this mating, this one, and her sister, with identical phenotype. Both of them will be put into reproduction in 2021.