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The Ultimate Guide To Quail As Pets

The Ultimate Guide To #Quail As Pets

Quail are a hardy, versatile bird often raised for meat and eggs, especially in many Asian countries. However, their variety of bright colors and adorable, pear-shaped body make them hard to resist as pets. Their petite size makes them a great alternative to chickens for people who live in cities. They’re also fun to observe – a quail’s chirping is cheerful, yet not excessively noisy.

Here’s everything you need to know about raising quail as pets:

Are Quails Good Enough To Eat?

Some types of quail are raised for meat, but even the largest weigh in at just under a pound. Once prepared, they offer even less meat – and it takes 1-2 birds to make a decent meal for one person. So, while you can raise your pet quail for meat, it’ll take a lot of butchering, plucking and preparing just to make dinner. If you’re hoping to raise birds for meat, you’re better off raising chickens.

Your pet quails can, however, provide eggs daily once they reach just 6-10 weeks of age. It takes 5-6 large quail eggs to equal one chicken egg, but they taste very similar and are prepared in all of the same ways: scrambled, poached, boiled, and can even be used in baked goods. Many people who are intolerant of chicken eggs can eat quail eggs.

There’s even special quail egg scissors that make kitchen prep much easier.

Quail eggs and meat are nutritious for both humans and your other pets, including cats, ferrets, rats and dogs.

What Kind Of Quail Should You Raise As Pets?

Female quail lay eggs, but males are more beautiful. It’s ideal to start with 3-4 females and one male if you’d like to fertilize and incubate some of your eggs.

Button Quail (Chinese Painted Quail) are sometimes sold in pet stores. They’re not large enough to raise for meat, and their eggs are tiny, though edible. For the most part, Buttons are raised to be tamed and admired.

California Valley Quail are another small, ornamental species. Males are light blue with striped markings; both males and females have that distinct crown feather.

The most common type of quail that you could likely purchase from a local farm is the Coturnix Quail. These are large, dull brown in color, and weigh up to 1 pound at maturity, typically raised for their meat and eggs.

Northern Bobwhite Quail are very similar to Coturnix, large and raised for meat and eggs.

What To Feed Your Pet Quail

Quail need a high protein diet, most game bird foods or a Finch seed mix can make up the majority of their diet. You can top them off so there is always food available. They should also have access to dark, leafy greens like kale, spinach, and lettuce. When outdoors, they typically eat insects and worms. Mealworms and crickets are a good snack for indoor birds.

Egg-laying females need extra calcium to produce firm, healthy shells – crushed or ground egg shells will do.

Fresh water should always be provided. You can leave water out in a bowl, change at least twice weekly, more often if it’s no longer clean.

Where To Keep Quail As Pets

Premium Plus Bunny Barn – Rabbit Hutches.

It’s not unusual for the small, ornamental quail to be kept indoors as pets. It’s not uncommon for them to be kept in large fish tanks, however, care must be taken that their living space is well-ventilated to prevent ammonia buildup, which can be harmful to both you and your pets.

An outdoor hutch, like this Premium Plus Rabbit Hutch, is a good choice for keeping more than a few quail. The small varieties can have hatchlings as tiny as bumblebees, so you may need to add fine mesh to prevent escape. Outside, your quail can catch bugs and enjoy the fresh air, but they’re also vulnerable to wild predators. Even rats can be a danger to your tiny birds.

Bonding With Your Pet Quail

Quail are not the most intelligent animals. Even so, if an animal can eat, it can be trained using food rewards. If you’re familiar with the concept of clicker training for dogs, you can try capturing your quail’s behavior in the same way. Here is a video of quail clicker training in action on the Epic QuailBlog YouTube Channel:

Like most birds, quail immediately bond with their mothers – or the first warm, sentient being they see upon hatching. This is called imprinting, and it’s crucial if you want to raise your bird to instinctively stay close to you, and even seek out your warmth and your company.

Have you ever raised quail? Share your experiences with us!

14 thoughts on “The Ultimate Guide To Quail As Pets

  1. I’m trying to capture a stray (?) button quail outside, I’m assuming it escaped or was set loose. I want to keep it safe while I look for the owner. I live in a townhouse with a unit upstairs. Should I be concerned about noise from the quail becoming a problem?

  2. Are quails traumatissed at starting because I think he is scared he doesn’t move

  3. What is the correct way to take care of quail ?

  4. my quail just ran away. where should I look? i’m really worried.

    my mom said let it run away but I don’t want to let go of him. should I let him leave?

  5. My quail are a curious bunch. Love being fed weeds from the garden and any grubs I find.

  6. I just bought 3 Bobwhite pullets, & I am concerned about lice & mites. How do I know if they have them, & how can I get rid of them? If they do have them does that mean I should not touch them? I want them to become friendly toward me, & be my pets.

    1. you need to dust bathe them that means they have to bathe in sand

  7. my quail has the same problem with her feet but fortunately here vets know a lot about quails and they say you should use “oxytetracycline” 100 mg and it could cure almost everything about about quails it works on my quail hope it works on yours too.

  8. My quail is 7 or 8 years old. He is having trouble walking. He uses his wings to help his legs. His appetite is good and he is content to sit on a heating pad all day. Can I do anything for him or is he just getting old?
    He is a mascot so don’t tell me to make soup.

    1. 7 or 8 and your quail is still around; that’s amazing considering the fact that normally quails only live for 4-5 years. I think he is just getting old. You can take him to an ‘avian vet’ just to be sure he is not having any other problems besides old age. Keep us updated on what happens.

      1. I examined Bobby and I see his feet are stiff. My boss who raised quails says he thinks it’s arthritis. It’s as if his feet were dead. He can move his legs fine and he seems to not be in any pain. I have a heating pad that he likes to sit on but he also moves around using his wings to help. My boss seems to think I should just keep bobby comfortable. Bobby’s mate died last year. She had similar trouble with her legs and I took her to the vet and he didn’t have much to say about this. As long as bobby is content I’m okay with it. What do you think?

        1. Seems to me that you are an awesome caretaker. I think Bobby is very lucky to have you. And I totally agree, as long as Bobby is content, everything is great!

        2. I hope your quail bird gets better.

    2. I men hadps your qual nbird seen the Doug cartoon THE POWER OF THE QUAIL

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