To say this quail project has been slow going would be an understatement. There have been delays, first it was weather, not really sure what came second and third it was lack of time. Other things have been taking priority and it’s possible I’ve been lacking motivation, it happens…
Then came Wednesday, the sun was shining, I had burn piles outside to keep an eye on, the wood for the sanctuary was already here so I decided to take another step forward. I’m glad too because this project is finally taking shape.
Framing the Sanctuary
The posts were installed back in January when everything was doormat, that project can be found here.
Because I decided on a natural look this project so far has included the following materials.
- Tree Trunks – Installed with auger, shovel and Thor hammer.
- Three raised beds -built from scratch, installed and filled with soil.
- Eight ft. 2 x 4’s – also cut four pieces at 2 ft. for connecting.
- Eight ft. pine fence boards, cut two at 1 ft. for connecting.
- Cordless drill and deckmate screws to install.
The next step was to connect the top and bottom boards to those posts. So, with Robert’s help we did this by connecting three 2 x 4’s overlapping with 2 ft. 2 x 4’s, lifted, screwed in place and repeat to the opposite side. This was definitely a two-person job!
We’ll be using 10 ft. 2 x 4’s for the ends so I can hang planters from the overhang.
Closing in the Bottom Frame
Closing in the bottom of the frame was about half completed thanks to the raised beds. These have already been filled, stain and now ready for planting.
Just like previous quail projects I used pine fence boards to close in the bottom but decided with two high instead of one. This will keep little baby quail from escaping because I did run into an issue with a few slipping away when the bobwhites hatched their own eggs at the farm. Read More here...
These boards filled in the wall gaps and the front was left open because I still need to do frame work for the door entrance.
Filling in Significant Gaps
I knew after all the rain in February this space would need more soil to raise the ground and leveling, I just didn’t realize there would be a significant gap. This can be normal and shouldn’t be overlooked if you have dogs, predators and additional concerns when it comes to protecting quail.
I started filling in the sanctuary at the opposite end last month after the raised beds were installed. Somewhere my efforts were derailed; this is heavy duty work and hard on the arms but wow am I ever building up the arm muscles.
The next step is to fill in the ground so no gaps appear and replant new grass seed. Excited because even with all that needs to be done things are coming together as envisioned.
Remember this, never install a ground level quail sanctuary and leave gaps, it’s like welcoming future problems and always establish a quail sanctuary in a fenced area. Predators are ruthless and stray dogs love quail…
Finishing Up for the Day
After finishing for the day, I started taking an inventory for what needed to be done next. That list looks like a lot and honestly it is.
- Raise the ground and plant grass.
- Plant Raised Beds – This will be Fun!
- Remove more surround trees and Robert needs to cut top posts to match frame height.
- Frame in for the door and build door.
- Stain the wood.
- Install chicken wire for roof and walls.
- Add Quail.
My goal now is to focus on the end result and perhaps this weekend I can check off the first two items on that list, it’s looking good because the garden is getting planted Saturday.
We have a lot going on right now and I’m reminded sometimes less is more, which means I decided one Quail Sanctuary will be sufficient.