button quail incubating and set up

MaddieLivez

In the Brooder
Dec 8, 2019
12
32
33
hi, i’m going to be incubating button quail eggs (friends gave them to me but their most likely not fertile) and i would like to know about a set up, food, water etc. i heard they like baths, and would they need more ground space or height? also what set up should i use because i have 3 ten gallon fish tanks and a 20 long that are empty. ok thanks, and if you have them please comment pictures!!!!
 
Last edited:

Quailobsessed

Songster
Oct 12, 2019
486
851
171
Australia
Hi, welcome to BYC!

I have 13 king (button) quails, one is just a chick. I keep mine outside in rabbit hutches or parrot breeding cages as these are a good size for a pair of quails. I know a lot of people keep them inside in fish tank setups because it gets cold outside but I'm in Australia where it doesn't really get cold so they do fine outside (king quails are actually native to Australia). If it gets cold where you live, I would keep them inside in a fish tank. The space requirement is 1 square foot per bird, you can do more than this, I try to.

For a brooder, I use a fish tank with a heat lamp and put paper towel on the bottom for the first few days to a week as it's an even surface and you can monitor eating better. I then put straw in the bottom when they're older as it is easier to keep clean as you don't need to change it every hour! Make sure you have shallow water dishes because if they can drown, they will drown. For feed for the chicks, I use game bird starter with 28% protein (it doesn't have to be 28%, that's all that's available to me, they still need high protein though) until they are 6-8 weeks old, then I move to game bird finisher with 22% protein.

Quails are ground dwelling birds who need more ground space, however, if startled, they will fly, I've had two kings fly away, now my hutches are in aviaries for extra security.

They do like baths as in dust baths with dirt or sand where they'll roll around, on hot days, mine try to bathe in their water dishes though it's generally not a good idea to get them too wet as they can get sick.

Here is what I use for my adult water dishes.
IMG_20191122_082603 (1).jpg


And here's some cute pictures of mama quail with her babies, it's important for research :)
IMG_20190411_132959.jpg
IMG_20190416_102602.jpg


Hope I've answered some of your questions, if you want to know anything else, feel free to ask, we're happy to help!
 

MaddieLivez

In the Brooder
Dec 8, 2019
12
32
33
Hi, welcome to BYC!

I have 13 king (button) quails, one is just a chick. I keep mine outside in rabbit hutches or parrot breeding cages as these are a good size for a pair of quails. I know a lot of people keep them inside in fish tank setups because it gets cold outside but I'm in Australia where it doesn't really get cold so they do fine outside (king quails are actually native to Australia). If it gets cold where you live, I would keep them inside in a fish tank. The space requirement is 1 square foot per bird, you can do more than this, I try to.

For a brooder, I use a fish tank with a heat lamp and put paper towel on the bottom for the first few days to a week as it's an even surface and you can monitor eating better. I then put straw in the bottom when they're older as it is easier to keep clean as you don't need to change it every hour! Make sure you have shallow water dishes because if they can drown, they will drown. For feed for the chicks, I use game bird starter with 28% protein (it doesn't have to be 28%, that's all that's available to me, they still need high protein though) until they are 6-8 weeks old, then I move to game bird finisher with 22% protein.

Quails are ground dwelling birds who need more ground space, however, if startled, they will fly, I've had two kings fly away, now my hutches are in aviaries for extra security.

They do like baths as in dust baths with dirt or sand where they'll roll around, on hot days, mine try to bathe in their water dishes though it's generally not a good idea to get them too wet as they can get sick.

Here is what I use for my adult water dishes.
View attachment 1977830

And here's some cute pictures of mama quail with her babies, it's important for research :)
View attachment 1977831 View attachment 1977832

Hope I've answered some of your questions, if you want to know anything else, feel free to ask, we're happy to help!

Thanks so much! and your button quail are so adorable! this information was really helpful. i have a couple ten gallon fishtanks so i should proabably get something bigger. do you think i would be able to get them to drink out of a rodent water and put in a shallow dish for them to splash around in? ive had chickens that have drank from the rodent water-er thing. thanks for the info
 

Quailobsessed

Songster
Oct 12, 2019
486
851
171
Australia
Thanks so much! and your button quail are so adorable! this information was really helpful. i have a couple ten gallon fishtanks so i should proabably get something bigger. do you think i would be able to get them to drink out of a rodent water and put in a shallow dish for them to splash around in? ive had chickens that have drank from the rodent water-er thing. thanks for the info
You could try the rodent waterer, I'd make sure they have another dish of water just in case. What are the dimensions of the tanks, sorry I'm not great with gallons as I use metric. How many are you planning on getting? They generally do best in pairs in my experience.

So excited for you!!! I think you'll love them.
 

MaddieLivez

In the Brooder
Dec 8, 2019
12
32
33
quailobsessed, the usa is stupid because we dont use the metric system :). i have three 10 gallon tanks (i looked up a translator thing to liters and its about 37.8 liters), and i have a 20 gallon long (75.7 liters) also the eggs i got from friends might not have the best chance of hatching (i dont know how old they are but i started to incubate them yesterday and their due to hatch around the 25th.(if the eggs are even fertilized)
 

Quailobsessed

Songster
Oct 12, 2019
486
851
171
Australia
quailobsessed, the usa is stupid because we dont use the metric system :). i have three 10 gallon tanks (i looked up a translator thing to liters and its about 37.8 liters), and i have a 20 gallon long (75.7 liters) also the eggs i got from friends might not have the best chance of hatching (i dont know how old they are but i started to incubate them yesterday and their due to hatch around the 25th.(if the eggs are even fertilized)
The 20 gallon (75.7 litre) tank sounds like an ideal size for a pair of kings. If your eggs don't hatch, you can post here on BYC and ask someone near you for eggs or chicks or adults, whatever you'd want. unfortunately, I can't help you with that (shipping would be crazy!) :) . I do hope you can hatch them, and on Christmas, even better!
 

MaddieLivez

In the Brooder
Dec 8, 2019
12
32
33
The 20 gallon (75.7 litre) tank sounds like an ideal size for a pair of kings. If your eggs don't hatch, you can post here on BYC and ask someone near you for eggs or chicks or adults, whatever you'd want. unfortunately, I can't help you with that (shipping would be crazy!) :) . I do hope you can hatch them, and on Christmas, even better!
thanks : ) im really excited about these guys also i show my birds at a poultry show and it would be nice to have birds besides chickens, a turkey, and a couple of ducks. thanks for all the help so far and ill try to keep you updated.
 

muddy75

Free Ranging
Premium member
Aug 17, 2018
3,066
17,043
746
southern indiana
E1761457-1869-461B-9984-D25D2621190B.jpeg FE77820A-FE6F-4496-A9E7-DAB94E6F7459.jpeg I have 4 button hens in a cage with my finches.....they have a little less than 1 sq ft per bird in the current cage, but they are content and doing well. I just hatched a new batch on December 2nd hoping to get the girls at least one mate :fl I had issues with them escaping from previous brooders so my chicks are currently in a hamster cage and I purchased the small parakeet/finch waterers from amazon which i like really well so far! my adults and finches use a quail waterer.
 
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